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    Russia to deploy 11 new Topol-M ICBMs in 2008

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    Russia's Strategic Missile Forces (SMF) will deploy 11 new silo and mobile-launched Topol-M intercontinental ballistic missiles in 2008, the SMF commander said on Wednesday.

    MOSCOW, February 27 (RIA Novosti) - Russia's Strategic Missile Forces (SMF) will deploy 11 new silo and mobile-launched Topol-M intercontinental ballistic missiles in 2008, the SMF commander said on Wednesday.

    Gen. Nikolai Solovtsov said the weapons would be deployed in the European part of Russia adding, "the SMF will receive 11 up-to-date Topol-M ICBMs in two versions [silo and mobile-launched]."

    The missile (NATO reporting name SS-27), with a range of about 7,000 miles (11,000 kms), is said to be immune to any current and future U.S. ABM defense. It is capable of making evasive maneuvers to avoid a kill using terminal phase interceptors, and carries targeting countermeasures and decoys.

    It is also shielded against radiation, electromagnetic pulse, nuclear blasts, and is designed to survive a hit from any form of laser technology.

    Gen. Solovtsov earlier said that Topol-M systems would be equipped with multiple independently targetable reentry vehicles (MIRV) in the next two or three years.

    Russia, which now operates around 50 Topol-Ms, resumed strategic bomber patrol flights over the Pacific, Atlantic, and Arctic oceans last August, following an order signed by President Putin.

    In a speech on February 8, Putin blamed the West for unleashing a new international arms race.

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