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Russia Test-Fires Tsirkon Hypersonic Missile in Arctic

Russian Defense Ministry

Russia has fired its Tsirkon hypersonic cruise missile from a warship in the north of the country, the military said Thursday.

The Admiral Gorshkov frigate has test-launched the Tsirkon several times in recent years.

President Vladimir Putin has dubbed the Tsirkon and other cutting-edge weapons “invincible” as Moscow hopes to gain an edge in any arms race with the United States amid growing tensions.

Hypersonic weapons are much harder to track and intercept than traditional projectiles because they can travel more than five times the speed of sound and maneuver in mid-flight.

The latest launch hit a target in the White Sea, the state-run TASS news agency cited the Russian Defense Ministry as saying.

“The target was struck with a direct hit,” the Defense Ministry said.

“Northern Fleet surface ships and naval aviation helped ensure the firing and the area’s closure,” it added.

According to TASS, Russia plans to test-fire five Tsirkon missiles.

The Tsirkon will join Avangard glide vehicles and the air-launched Kinzhal (Dagger) missiles in Russia’s hypersonic arsenal.

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