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British secret services confirm: “Terminator” is in Ukraine. What are the Russians’ relentless war machines?

The armored vehicle is equipped with two cannons, four guided-missile launchers with a laser guidance system, two grenade launchers, and a machine gun.

Amateur videos had already appeared on social media and the Russian state agency RIA Novosti had assured that the Russian exterminators were on their way to Donbass, the main focus of the battle in Ukraine, invaded 88 days ago by Russia. Independent confirmation arrives this Sunday through the UK Ministry of Defense: the Russian BMPT tank is being sent to the Severodonetsk area, Lugansk oblast, one of the two regions that make up the Donbass.

However, in its daily report, the Ministry of Defense argues that armored vehicles will be of little use. “With a maximum of ten Terminators, they are unlikely to have a significant impact on the campaign,” the report reads. In fact, no one knows for sure how many exterminators Russia has.

In their message, posted on Twitter, the British also say that Severodonetsk, capital of Lugansk province since 2014, remains a tactical priority for the Kremlin.

This war vehicle, already used by Russia in the conflict in Syria, is produced by the Russian company Uralvagonzavod, being officially nicknamed the Terminator, as it is heavily armored (and armed) and was designed to be used in urban combat. To date, as far as is known, only Algeria and Kazakhstan have purchased these tanks from Russia.

How strong is the Terminator?

It was during the war with Afghanistan (1979–1989) that the still Soviet Union realized that it needed its own vehicle to operate in tight urban areas. Later, after the collapse of the USSR, the need was again felt when the Russians fought in the first Chechen war (1994-1996).

In Grozny, while fighting for control of the capital, the Russians realized that their tanks were an easy target: opponents were capable of throwing grenades from the windows of buildings, damaging them. The armored vehicles lacked the ability to fire up and down.

Uralvagonzavod — one of Russia’s largest scientific and industrial complexes and the world’s largest manufacturer of war tanks — conceived several prototypes until it reached the BMPT, which has two versions. The main difference is grenade launchers: one version has it, the other doesn’t. In Ukraine, the exterminators that have been sighted are the ones with that weaponry. They also have five crew seats instead of three.

Thus, the armored fighting vehicle is equipped with two cannons (2A42), four missile launchers (9M120 Ataka) guided with laser guidance system, two automatic grenade launchers (AG-17D) and a machine gun (PKTM 7. 62 mm). The main objective was thus achieved: a war machine with immense firepower.

The 9M120 missile is designed to defeat tanks with composite armor and explosive reactive armor and has a range of up to 6 kilometers. Grenade launchers provide infantry fire support, from short to medium range, and are used especially to fire directly at enemy soldiers and unarmored vehicles.

The machine gun is an automatic weapon that uses conventional ammunition, piercing incendiary (when the collision occurs, the incendiary material ignites at the tip and the detonation takes place), tracer (the pyrotechnic composition is ignited by the flaming gunpowder, it burns very intensely, leaving a trail of the projectile) and improved penetration.

Defensively, the Terminator is equipped with reactive armor that explodes outward (if hit the vehicle) which neutralizes some anti-tank grenades.

Source: With Agencies

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