08:10 GMT31 October 2020
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    Russian intelligence officers have raided the offices of two missile development facilities of the Roscosmos Corporation in search of the person who leaked classified information on hypersonic missiles to Western intelligence agencies.

    Russia's Federal Security Service (FSB), a domestic intelligence agency, searched the premises of two Roscosmos facilities involved with the hypersonic missile project: the Central Research Institute of Machine Building (TSNIIMASH) and the United Rocket and Space Corporation (URSC), Friday morning.

    A source with knowledge of the probe told the Kommersant newspaper, "Many heads will roll, it won't be limited to people being dismissed," underscoring the seriousness of the investigation. He said "it was established that the leak came from TSNIIMASH employees who were in touch with Paison." Dmitry Paison, who is in charge at the URSC building, had his office separately raided.

    Russian President Vladimir Putin revealed the hypersonic weapons during a March speech, calling the Avangard, which is designed to be mounted on an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), "invincible." The other missile is the Kinzhal (dagger), which is said to be capable of destroying an aircraft carrier, Sputnik News reported.

    Some of the hypersonic weapons are reportedly in service already. In May, the US business outlet CNBC published a report in which a source they spoke to with knowledge of US intelligence report said Russia will have a weapon the US can't defend against ready for war by 2020. 

    Sputnik News reported that on July 12 that Pentagon Undersecretary of Defense for Research and Engineering Michael Griffin told reporters that hypersonic weapons are "not an advantage that we can concede to people who wish to be our adversaries."

    Now the Department of Defense is seeking some $20 million from Congress to pay for the development of their own hypersonic weapons.


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    hypersonic missiles, spy, leak, Russia’s Federal Security Service, Roscosmos, Russia
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