Russia has deployed an advanced S-400 surface-to-air missile battery to the Crimean Peninsula amid escalating tensions there, according to Russian newsreports. The missile system, once operational, would be able to target aircraft deep into Ukrainian airspace.
The deployment of the road-mobile missile system has been planned at least since July, but its arrival in Crimea coincides with a flurry of military activity and rhetoric following claims from the Kremlin that two Russians were killed on the Crimean-Ukrainian border last week.
The S-400 can hit targets well over 150 miles from its launch site when paired with the appropriate radar array and is billed as one of Russia’s most advanced surface-to-air defense systems. The Crimean Peninsula is currently home to the older S-300 Russian surface-to-air missiles that will probably be replaced by the arrival of the newer S-400s.