With fierce fighting in Ukraine, Russia may be running out of missiles

Russia may not have enough missiles left to carry out large-scale attacks on Ukraine over the next three months, an Estonian intelligence official said.

Estonian television station ERR reported on January 27, Estonian Intelligence Director Margo Grosberg said that, based on Russia’s current production capacity of precision-guided weapons, the country can continue to conduct strikes. missile strikes on Ukraine in 3-4 months, and this is the “most optimistic” outlook on how long the Russian raids can continue.

How long the raids last depends on how many precision-guided weapons Russia has before the start of the military operation in February 2022, estimated at 2,500 missiles, Grosberg said Russia’s continued missile production.

Mr. Grosberg is not the only official to predict the possibility that Russia will have to stop the raids due to limited missile supplies. Secretary of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council Oleksiy Danilov told Ukraine’s Pravda news agency last month that Russia only has enough missiles to carry out three or four more attacks.

The head of Ukraine’s defense intelligence agency, Kyrylo Budanov, said on January 1 that Russia only had enough missiles for two more large-scale raids. According to him, Russia has recently begun to reduce the number of missiles in each raid, from more than 100 to 50-60 each time, to maintain the frequency of attacks.

Russia began a large-scale missile attack on energy infrastructure across Ukraine in October 2022. A report by the British defense intelligence agency said that since then, Russia has formed a tactic to conduct a large raid every 7-10 days.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky estimates that Russia has carried out more than 4,500 missile strikes on Ukraine since the start of the military campaign. According to Kyiv, Moscow’s tactic is to turn Ukraine’s major cities into “unlivable” places, forcing Ukraine to agree to sit at the negotiating table on Russian terms.

The British Ministry of Defense predicts that Russia may conduct some more large-scale attacks in the coming days. However, they believe that it is difficult for Russia to maintain this trend for a long time because its arsenal is exhausted.

Mr. Budanov said that Moscow could face a serious shortage of weapons around March. Meanwhile, restoring the missile stockpile, in Russia will take several months.

Ukraine’s Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov said earlier this month that Russian forces had only 90 drones left to use in attacks in Ukraine. On the Russian side, the country’s officials rejected the assessment of Ukraine and the West about the risk of running out of weapons. 

At the end of December last year, the Russian Defense Ministry announced that the country would “never” run out of Kalibr cruise missiles. Russian President Vladimir Putin late last month urged defense industry leaders to speed up production to deliver equipment to the army as quickly as possible. Deputy Chairman of the Russian National Security Council Dmitry Medvedev also confirmed that Russia is increasing the speed of weapons production and the arsenal will be significantly improved. 

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