MOSCOW, May 8 (Xinhua) -- Russia's strategic forces conducted planned exercises Thursday in the country under the supervision of President Vladimir Putin, the Interfax news agency reported.
During the war games, a TU-95MC strategic bomber launched six air-to-ground cruise missiles, which successfully hit their targets in the Western military district.
In the North, the strategic missile forces launched a Topol RS-12M inter-continental ballistic missile (ICBM) from the sub-polar site of Plesetsk. The ICBM hit its target in the Far Eastern Kamchatka Peninsula, the Defense Ministry was quoted as saying in a statement.
Two more ICBMs were launched from submarines of the Northern and Pacific Fleets, the statement said.
In the Central military district, missile systems Uragan and Grad conducted firing exercises, while in the Southern military district tactic Iskander-M and Smerch missiles were used.
At an exercise range in Kazakhstan, Russia's air space forces and anti-aircraft forces successfully intercepted a simulated nuclear strike with the Amur intercepting system.
Meanwhile, a TOS-1 multiple rocket launcher and thermobaric weapon system failed to operate properly during drills in the Central military district. Putin has ordered the district's commander to investigate the cause of the failure.
In televised comments, the president stressed that the drills were planned in November, implying that they were not directly linked to the ongoing Ukraine crisis.
But he told the visiting heads of state from Belarus, Armenia, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan, who came to Moscow for an informal summit, that his country's nuclear defense capabilities remained strong and on constant alert.
"We have all had a chance to see the high readiness and concerted action of our country's strategic offensive and defensive forces. We are going to conduct planned and snap drills in the future," Putin said.
According to Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, the number of Russian high-precision strategic missiles Yars and Bulava will be increased four-fold by 2021.