Get Ready, NATO: Russia's S-500 Is Coming Soon to a Battlefield Near You

Mark Episkopos

Mark Episkopos

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Get Ready, NATO: Russia's S-500 Is Coming Soon to a Battlefield Near You

Following months of radio silence and scattered leaks by anonymous sources, top Russian defense industry officials are finally going on record about Russia’s upcoming S-500 missile defense system—and it may be coming sooner than expected.

Sergei Chemezov, CEO of Russian defense conglomerate Rostec, kicked off a new round of speculation when he recently told Russian media that the S-500 will enter service “very soon”: "New state-of-the-art weapons are being developed. So, once we can already sell S-400 systems, we now begin to manufacture S-500 systems. These are more updated systems. I’d prefer not to tell [you] about them now, they are not yet operational. I think they will enter service very soon."

Russian Minister of Industry and Trade Denis Manturov went even farther than Chemezov in asserting the S-500’s readiness: “development of the Prometheus S-500 missile defense system is in its final stage. The S-500 has completed state trials, and is now undergoing systems refinement. The missile system’s primary specifications were verified during the course of the tests, and the system is ready for serial production. On the whole, development is proceeding according to plan, and the first S-500 units will be delivered to the Russian armed forces within the timetable set by the state armament programme 2027,” Chemezov said to the Russian Interfaks news agency.

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