A medium-range air defense missile system with a Belarusian-made missile is currently undergoing the final stage of its tests in Belarus, the chairman of the State Military-Industrial Committee (Gosvoenprom) of Belarus, Dmitry Pantus, said in a statement. interview with the STV channel: “It should be noted the launches of a medium-range air defense missile system. There were three stages of testing, and in the first quarter of 2022 we reached the final stage of testing, they will be carried out literally in a week, final tests with live firing, after which it will be possible to say with confidence in the development of an air defense missile system entirely made in Belarus, our own national missile,” said the chairman of the committee.
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New Belarusian 9A33-2B modernized version of the Russian-made OSA 9K33 air defense missile system. (Photo credit: Army Recognition)
According to Dmitry Pantus, “The missile is of paramount importance. We first talk about the economy and skills. Today is the top for us, the key area, to which we pay particular attention. Weapons development is one of our main tasks,” he explained. He went further by explaining that Belarusian defense contractors work in two key areas, in particular the development of air defense weapons and means of electronic warfare and electronic intelligence: “With regard to weapons , the upgrade of the Osa air defense missile system was completed recently. Today it is undergoing tests at the Ministry of Defense and special attention is also being given to it,” Pantus said. “Of course, there are the Belarusian-made medium-range air defense missile systems and our own missiles. I believe that we will complete this R&D work in 2022 and the delivery of items to our armed forces will begin under the state armament program,” the committee chairman added.
In August 2021, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko said Belarus was interested in Russian-made deliveries S-400 (NATO reporting name: SA-21 Growler) air defense missile systems, but the country did not have enough money to buy them. Belarusian air and air defense forces operate Tor-M2 (SA-15 Gauntlet) air defense missile systems purchased from Russia. Several Belarusian companies specialize in repairing and upgrading these weapon systems in addition to the Russian-made S-300 (SA-10 Grumble) and Bouk (SA-17 Grizzly).
On August 6, 2020, Army Recognition released information on the first tests of the Belarusian 9A33-2B modernized version of the 9K33 Osa air defense missile, reporting that the Belarusian defense industry has started a program to modernize its Soviet-made Osa 98K33 under the name of 9A33-2B. The new system was to be equipped with new radio-electronic equipment to increase the capabilities of the air defense system in terms of detection and tracking and to improve the missile guidance system.
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