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Militarization of Crimea: Bastion and BAL Coastal Defense Missile Systems

Bastion Coastal Defense Missile System

On August 8, 2016, Russian occupying authorities in Crimea relocated Bastion coastal defense missile systems [1]to Starokrymsky Training Range in the east of the peninsula.
A video showing the relocation of Russian military equipment was posted on YouTube by Alim Aydamak. The video captured a convoy of Russian military vehicles, including at least five Bastions, moving to Starokrymsky Training Range.

Bastion mobile coastal defense missile system (GRAU index 3K55, NATO classification SSC-5 Stooge) was developed by the Russian engineering agency NPO Mashinostroyeniya and adopted by the Russian Armed Forces in 2010. The weapon is designed to destroy various surface ships, convoys and landing craft, aircraft carrier battle groups, single ships and surface targets under intense fire and electronic countermeasures.

BAL mobile coastal missile system

Let us remind you that in February 2016, the international volunteer community InformNapalm in course of OSINT investigation gathered intelligence about the exact location of another Russian coastal missile system – BAL. They belonged to the newly formed 15th Missile Brigade of Coastal defense. Weapons and equipment for this Brigade were transferred to Crimea from Dagestan. For the detailed investigation see:  Russian Officer Disclosed Secrets of ‘BAL’ Surface-to-Ship Missile Complex in Crimea. [2]

Thus, we witness continuing militarization of the peninsula and its transformation into a “floating aircraft carrier”. These activities aim to threaten the world security, in particular, in the Black Sea region.

Translated by Andrii Gryganskyi

Edited by Sveta Kemblowski

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