Russian coastal missile systems Bal will be armed with a new missile that will double the firing range of the complex, TASS reports with reference to a source in the military-industrial sector.
In addition, the new ammunition will be able to strike not only sea-based, but also ground targets. Currently, the Bal system uses X-35 missiles with a range of 120 kilometers, as well as X-35U with a range of 260 kilometers.
"The tests of the new Bal missile have confirmed that its flight range exceeded 500 km, and owing to the new guidance system, it can now hit ground targets," the source said.
The new missile thus upgrades the performance of the Bal complex to the level of the Bastion coastal missile system, which uses the Onyx supersonic missiles.
In December 2020, The Izvestia newspaper, citing sources in the Defence Ministry, announced the formation of a coast guard brigade on Sakhalin Island. The unit was armed with Bal and Bastion complexes to ensure the protection of the coastline from landing operations and warships armed with cruise missiles.
According to the military expert Igor Korotchenko, after the end of the battle for Donbass, the third stage of the military special operation will begin.