Espreso. Global

Air Force spokesman Ihnat explains which missiles cannot be shot down by Ukrainian air defense

16 March, 2023 Thursday

Air Force spokesman Yuriy Ihnat has explained which missiles Ukraine's Air Defense Forces cannot shoot down and why. The list includes Kh-22, Iskanders, and MLRS

In an interview with Channel 24, Ihnat said that the ability to shoot down certain missiles depends on the systems in service in Ukraine.

According to him, Ukraine is unable to shoot down ballistic missiles, including Iskander-M, which the enemy used extensively at the beginning of the war. Currently, the Russian forces have used up the entire strategic stock of Iskander missiles, so they are now using the more outdated Tochka-U systems. The spokesperson noted that air defense is also unable to intercept MLRS, such as Smerch. Ballistic missiles also include S-300, which Russians are actively using in frontline areas.

“All these missiles fly fast - along a ballistic trajectory and actually hit the target at a high speed. In order to shoot down something that is already falling, we need special anti-aircraft missile systems,” Ihnat explained. 

In addition, Ukrainian air defense is currently unable to shoot down Kh-22 missiles because “when approaching the target, it actually dives like a ballistic missile.” He also noted that it was such a missile that demolished a house in Dnipro.

Ihnat said that none of the more than 120 Kh-22 missiles that have been fired since the start of the full-scale aggression have been shot down.

“When a missile is flying at such a high speed and enters the kill zone of an anti-aircraft missile system, our S-300 combat crew, for example, has only up to 40 seconds to detect it with the observation radar, directly capture it with the subsurface radar and launch the missile. This time is physically insufficient for operators of the outdated Soviet system to successfully complete such a task,” the spokesman explained.

In addition, Ukrainian air defense cannot shoot down supersonic anti-ship cruise missiles of the R-800 Oniks coastal-based cruise missiles and hypersonic airborne missiles Kh-47 Kinzhal.

“The complexity of its (Kh-47 - ed.) destruction is several times higher than that of the same Kh-22 due to its much higher flight speed and even shorter response time for equipment and people,” the spokesman said.

He noted that the 'narrow-profile' Kh-31P airborne anti-radar missiles and similar shorter-range air-to-ground missiles can't also be shot down.

Ihnat explained that in order to shoot down all these missiles, Ukraine needs Patriot and FSAF SAMP/T systems. 

Currently, the main systems in service in Ukraine are Buk-M1 and S-300. These are anti-aircraft guided missiles that can shoot down both aircraft and cruise missiles. Thanks to them, the Ukrainian Armed Forces can destroy:

  • Kalibr (3M14) - sea-launched cruise missile;

  • Kh-101/Kh-555/Kh-55 - air-launched cruise missiles;

  • R-500 (9M728) - ground-launched cruise missile from the Iskander-K complex;

  • Kh-59 - air-to-ground guided missile;

  • Kh-35 - air-, sea-, or shore-based anti-ship missile.

The spokesman also explained that according to international standards, even 305 missiles shot down is considered a successful air defense operation.

  • Yuriy Ihnat, spokesman for the Ukrainian Air Force, said that Russia failed to destroy Ukraine's energy infrastructure in the winter, so now everything can be expected. 

Read also:
  • News
2023, Thursday
30 March
Russian nuclear weapons in Belarus will not change anything 
Russia is preparing to recruit 400 thousand additional ‘volunteers’ - British Intelligence
Russian offensive on Bakhmut’s outskirts slows to near standstill. Military expert Serhiy Zgurets
US transfer $1.25 billion grant to Ukraine’s state budget
Russia's state budget is starting to crack at seams - Ukraine's diplomat Ohryzko
Russia reduces number of ships in Black Sea due to storm, weather is critical for aviation and drones - Ukraine’s Defense Forces
They are looking for guerrilla fighters: Russians announce several objects and residential buildings in Melitopol are mined 
Price civilians pay for the war - Ukrainian photographer wins World Press Photo award for his Mariupol photos 
Germany to allocate additional €12 billion for long-term military assistance to Ukraine
General Milley: Russia, China, Iran will threaten global security for years to come  
Russian Volunteer Corps shared video of operation in Bryansk region on March 2
US intends to bring Russia back into compliance with nuclear weapons treaty - State Department
About 6,000 Wagner mercenaries fight in Bakhmut, Donetsk region — General Milley
Center for Countering Disinformation publishes Russia’s fakes for March 29 
US finds "no serious violations" related to aid for Ukraine
Ukrainian Armed Forces have killed at least 172.9 thousand Russian invaders since beginning of full-scale war
Ukrainian Defense Ministry tells about Ukrainian and Russian losses on the battlefield 
Russia launches 5 missile and 25 air strikes on Ukraine, FSB carries out humiliating filtration in Crimea - General Staff 
Victorious news of 399th day of war: trap for Russian bomber, explosion in Crimea, Mi-8 helicopters from Croatia
Yevhen Hulevych from Lviv: from intellectual projects to philosophy of trenches and death near Bakhmut
Russian propaganda launches new narrative of fighting ‘Satanism’ in Ukraine
Hungary will continue to block EU sanctions on Russian nuclear energy, expand cooperation with Russia – Szijjártó
The West is about pragmatism. Therefore, do not be overly optimistic
Russia called up over 500,000 troops last year – Bloomberg
Iranian foreign minister calls for diplomatic settlement of Ukraine war at meeting with Lavrov
China may start producing ammunition for Russia and sell it through DPRK – military expert Katkov
Peskov says West's ‘hybrid war against Russia’ will last long, Ukraine responds
Analysts refute Russian claim of Ukrainian refugees raising crime rate in Poland
2023, Wednesday
29 March
Pushing Pushkin
Ukrainian war correspondents speak against restrictions on some media to report from ‘red’ zones
Russian bread factory starts producing drones for Russian military – media
Russian troops dig trenches, build fortifications in Crimea; Ukrainian Armed Forces repel 48 attacks in a day – General Staff
Russia's deployment of nuclear weapons in Belarus challenges NATO – MEP Auštrevičius
Slovakia condemns Russian atrocities against women and children in Ukraine
Kvitka ‘Kasey’ Cisyk: 25 years without legendary voice of American-Ukrainian woman
US estimates Russian casualties in Ukraine at 220,000 killed and wounded 
Ukrainian guerrillas discover Russian troops, adjust fire on them
ICC to determine whether Russia's abduction of Ukrainian children is genocide – Ukrainian Ombudsman
Ukrainian marines target 8 Russian soldiers and mortar in one day
Albina Deriugina, the legend of rhythmic gymnastics, dies
More news