Baku. 2 October. REPORT.AZ/ International monitors say they have spotted a new kind of Russian weapons system in rebel-held Ukraine this week, possible evidence of Moscow's continued interest in Ukraine even as it focuses on Syria, Report informs referring to Reuters.
The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, which is monitoring a ceasefire in eastern Ukraine, reported that its monitors had seen a mobile TOS-1 'Buratino' weapons system for the first time.
The Buratino is equipped with thermobaric warheads which spread a flammable liquid around a target and then ignite it. It can destroy several city blocks in one strike and cause indiscriminate damage.
Only Russia produces the system and it was not exported to Ukraine before the conflict broke out, according to IHS Jane's Group and the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, which track arms exports.
The OSCE's findings are embarrassing for the Kremlin, which has turned down its rhetoric on Ukraine and shifted attention to Syria, where it has begun air strikes. The report comes before President Vladimir Putin holds talks in Paris on Friday with the leaders of Germany, France and Ukraine on the peace process.
The Russian defence ministry did not reply to written questions from Reuters about whether Ukrainian rebels were supplied with the weapon or where it had been exported.