Russian President Vladimir Putin has pledged that his navy would soon be armed with destructive hypersonic “Zircon” missiles as tensions with the West rise and the conflict in Ukraine rages on. While speaking on Russia’s Navy Day onboard a ship in St. Petersburg, Putin lauded Russian Tsar Peter the Great for creating Russia a great sea power and further boasted about the special capabilities of the hypersonic weaponry, Daily Mail reported.
The deployment of the Zircon cruise missiles, according to the President, will take place in the next months and would enable the Russian Navy to respond to threats promptly.
On the occasion, Putin said, “The delivery of these (missiles) to the Russian armed forces will start in the coming months”, Newsweek reported. He added, “The Admiral Gorshkov frigate will be the first to go on combat duty with these formidable weapons on board.”
The Russian President even noted, “The key thing here is the capability of the Russian navy… It is able to respond with lightning speed to all who decide to infringe on our sovereignty and freedom.
It is pertinent to mention that Russia has performed several test launches of the Zircon hypersonic missile from warships and submarines over the last year. Hypersonic missiles are capable of travelling at nine times the speed of sound.
According to a Newsweek report, in January 2020, Russia conducted the Zircon’s initial test, claiming it could travel at speeds of up to 6,600 mph and hit targets at a distance of 1,000 kilometres
Furthermore, in his speech, Russian President Putin avoided mentioning Ukraine but emphasised that the missiles will be deployed wherever Russia’s interests lie.