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Putin’s Hypersonic Nuclear Missile Stirs Fears of Arms Race

  • Russia is beating U.S. on defense-evading weapons, Putin said
  • Last U.S.-Russia strategic arms-control pact expires in 2021
An Avangard missile launcher.
An Avangard missile launcher.Source: TASS via Getty Images
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A new hypersonic nuclear missile that Russia says it has deployed is fueling concerns of a new arms race with the U.S. as the clock ticks down on the expiry of the last treaty limiting the strategic arsenals of the two former Cold War foes.

Russia’s first regiment of Avangard missiles was commissioned in the Urals region of Orenberg, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said Dec. 27, days after President Vladimir Putin boasted that the new weapon could penetrate any defensive shield.