- Russia has stockpiled 800 missiles in Crimea in preparation for its second winter campaign.
- The Ukrainian Southern Military Command said, “the enemy is accumulating potential.”
- It is feared the missiles are intended for strikes on critical Ukrainian civilian infrastructure.
Ukraine is bracing itself for an aerial onslaught this winter, with reports suggesting Russia has stockpiled 800 missiles in Crimea to strike at Ukrainian civilian infrastructure.
Last winter, Russia adopted the same tactic it appears to be preparing for this year — targeting Ukrainian power and water infrastructure with missiles.
The Kremlin bombarded Ukrainian energy targets last year, cutting off electricity and heat to millions during the harsh winter conditions, and is now expected to pursue the same strategy.
An assessment by the International Rescue Committee found that 25% of respondents in Ukraine who reported not having access to sufficient heating face freezing conditions.
“We know that the enemy has a powerful hub of military resources deployed on the Crimean Peninsula,” Nataliya Humenyuk, spokeswoman for the Ukrainian Southern Military Command, told Ukrainian media, per The Kyiv Post.
“Kalibr-type missiles are concentrated there, and Onyx-type missiles are also launched from the Crimean Peninsula. The enemy is accumulating potential – this is obvious,” she added.
The “Kalibr” family of missiles, designated by NATO as the SS-N-30A includes anti-ship, anti-submarine, and land-attack models that can be launched from ships, subs, and aircraft. Kalibrs have a range of 1,000 to 1,500 miles and can conduct precision strikes using satellite navigation. They can carry a nearly 1,000-pound conventional high-explosive warhead.
“We are talking about the readiness of more than 800 missiles in total to be used by the enemy for the stage of energy terror,” said Humenyuk.
The Ministry of Energy had previously cautioned that Russia is aiming to undermine Ukraine’s energy facilities by launching significant strikes, per The Kyiv Post.
As the war in Ukraine heads into its second winter, territorial movement could be limited in the months ahead. Jack Watling, a land warfare expert, wrote that Ukraine must maintain its air-defense systems throughout winter to prevent devastating Russian strikes,
Ukraine is also seeks to take advantage of the winter conditions, which typically slow fighting, by cutting off Russian forces’ supply chains.
In a video address on November 12, President Volodymyr Zelensky said Ukraine needs to prepare for the likely Russian attacks on critical infrastructure this winter.
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