Russia's Yars mobile missile launchers will manoeuvre across Siberia for military exercises, engaging over 3,000 servicemen and 300 units of military equipment, the defence ministry says.
The Russian military has conducted drills of its strategic missile forces, deploying mobile launchers in Siberia in a show of the country's massive nuclear capability amid the fighting in Ukraine.
As part of the drills, the Yars mobile missile launchers will manoeuvre across three regions of Siberia, Russia's Defence Ministry said on Wednesday.
The movements will involve measures to conceal the deployment from foreign intelligence assets, the ministry added but did not mention plans for any practice launches.
The Yars is a nuclear-tipped intercontinental ballistic missile with a range of about 11,000 kilometres (over 6,800 miles). It forms the backbone of Russia's strategic missile forces.
The Defence Ministry released a video showing massive trucks carrying the missiles driving out from a base to go on patrol. The manoeuvres involve about 300 vehicles and 3,000 troops in eastern Siberia, according to the ministry.
The massive exercise took place days after Russian President Vladimir Putin announced a plan to deploy tactical nuclear weapons to Belarus, Russia's neighbour and ally.
READ MORE: Putin says Russia will station tactical nuclear weapons in Belarus
Moscow to use 'all means'
Tactical nuclear weapons are intended for use on the battlefield and have a relatively short range and a much lower yield compared to the long-range strategic missiles fitted with nuclear warheads that are capable of obliterating whole cities.
Putin’s decision to put the tactical weapons in Belarus followed his repeated warnings that Moscow was ready to use “all available means” — a reference to its nuclear arsenal — to fend off attacks on Russian territory.
Russian officials have issued a barrage of statements since their troops entered Ukraine, warning that the continuing Western support for Ukraine raised the threat of a nuclear conflict.
In remarks published on Tuesday, Nikolai Patrushev, the secretary of Russia's Security Council, which Putin chairs, warned the United States and its allies against harbouring hopes for Russia's defeat in Ukraine.
Patrushev alleged that some American politicians believe the US could launch a preventative missile strike on Russia to which Moscow would be unable to respond, a purported belief that he described as “short-sighted stupidity, which is very dangerous.”
“Russia is patient and isn’t trying to scare anyone with its military superiority, but it has unique modern weapons capable of destroying any adversary, including the United States, in case of a threat to its existence,” Patrushev said.
READ MORE: EU warns Belarus of more sanctions if Russia nuclear weapons plan proceeds
During exercises, Yars mobile systems will conduct manoeuvres in three Russian regions, Russia's defence ministry says. Dasha Chernyshova has more pic.twitter.com/cYOSPytMXj— TRT World Now (@TRTWorldNow) March 29, 2023