Russia accuses Ukraine of attacking a strategic bomber base, causing damage to Tu-22M3

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 The Russian Defense Ministry announced that Ukraine used unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to attack two military airports where Russia’s strategic bombers are stationed, calling this a “terrorist act.” Father”. Currently, Kiev has not commented on this information.

“On the morning of December 5, Kiev tried to use Soviet-made UAVs to attack the military airports of Dyagilevo (Ryazan province) and Engels (Saratov province) in order to neutralize Russian strategic bombers,” the Russian Defense Ministry said. 5/12 announcement.

Engels Air Base is home to the only squadron of Tu-160 strategic bombers, along with dozens of Tu-22M3 and Tu-95MS aircraft. The base is located about 14 km east of the city of Saratov, with a runway up to 3,500 meters long.

Dyagilevo Air Base is home to a squadron of Tu-2M32 and Tu-95MS bombers and Il-78 refueling aircraft.

The Dyagilevo base, located about 3 km northwest of the provincial capital Ryazan of the same name, has a 3,000-meter runway.

The agency said the Russian air defense shot down the UAVs when they flew at low altitudes. The wreckage of the UAV fell and exploded over Russian airports, causing minor damage to the hulls of two planes.

Three technicians were killed, and four servicemen were injured in the incident.

Russia’s Defense Ministry accused Ukraine of “trying to disrupt the combat operations of the Russian strategic air forces with terrorist acts”.

Images published by the media show that at least one Tu-22M3 strategic bomber was damaged in this incident.

It can be seen that the tail of the Tu-22M3 was destroyed by the impact of the explosion.

The Russian side confirmed that Kiev’s attacks were carried out at the same time as Moscow’s missile strikes on energy, military, and communications targets of Ukraine on the afternoon of December 5.

Moscow stated that the raids had achieved positive results when all “17 predetermined targets were destroyed”.

During the Cold War, the Tu-22 was an obsession for the US and NATO. Possessing fast flight and an unrivaled missile arsenal, the latest development Tu-22M3 is considered a nightmare for aircraft carriers.

Realizing the great features of this aircraft, China repeatedly offered to buy, but Russia shook its head and refused.

The Tu-22M3 has changed such as the air intakes similar to those of the MiG-25 and an upturned nose that houses the Leninets PN-AD radar.

This bomber had a crew of four; a length of 41.46 m; a wingspan of 23.3 m (closed at 65 degrees), 34.28 m (split at 20 degrees); a height of 11.05 m.

The aircraft is equipped with 2 Klimov NK-25 jet engines with a thrust of 245.2 kN; a maximum speed of Mach 1.88; a flight range of 7,000 km; flying ceiling of 13 km.

Tu-22M3’s empty mass is 58 tons, maximum take-off mass is up to 126.5 tons.

Although smaller than Tu-160 and Tu-95, this bomber can still carry nearly 24 tons of weapons.

The Tu-22M3 variant entered service in 1983, while the modernized version Tu-22M3M debuted in 2018.

The main weapons of the Tu-22M3 are three Kh-22 heavy anti-ship missiles with a range of 600 km or 10 Kh-15 anti-ship ballistic missiles capable of hitting targets from 300 km away.

While the Tu-22M3M variant can carry four Kh-47M2 “Kinzhal” hypersonic cruise missiles.

Currently, Tu-22M3/M3M is one of three strategic bombers of Russia besides Tu-95MS and Tu-160.

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