Ukrainian strike on Russia’s Engels-2 airbase to complicate mass missiles strikes against Ukraine, reports New York Times

28 December 2022, 11:35 AM
Airport in Engels (Photo:Satellite image 2022 Maxar Technologies/Handout via REUTERS)

Airport in Engels (Photo:Satellite image 2022 Maxar Technologies/Handout via REUTERS)

A recent Ukrainian strike against Russia’s Engels-2 military airbase may complicate Russia’s campaign of mass missile against Ukrainian energy infrastructure, the New York Times reported on Dec. 27.

The newspaper noted that the strikes have forced Russia to relocate its aircraft, "potentially complicating Moscow’s campaign of aiming cruise missile strikes at Ukraine’s energy grid."

The NYT also noted that cruise missiles are sometimes fired from ground-based launchers at the airfield — meaning that Ukrainian attacks against Russian airfields may damage those as well.

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Ukrainian military intelligence chief Kyrylo Budanov has previously said that Russia has missiles remaining for only two or three mass strikes. He noted that Russia is attempting to preserve their hypersonic “Kinzhal” missiles, as they lack the capability of manufacturing new missiles.

According to Budanov, Russia had 47 Kinzhal missiles at the beginning of the full-scale war against Ukraine.

A large explosion was recorded at the Engels-2 airbase in Russia’s Saratov Oblast, about 700km from the Ukrainian border, overnight on Dec. 26-27. The airbase is a prime launch point for Russian aerial bombers and other aircraft. The Russian Ministry of Defense claimed that the blast was caused by pieces of debris from an intercepted Ukrainian drone on their way to the base. While no damage to aircraft has been confirmed, Russian authorities did acknowledge that three servicemembers were killed in the attack.

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