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Russia claims first destruction of SAMP/T, France denies

Russia claims first destruction of SAMP/T, France denies Russia claims to have destroyed SAMP/T systems for the first time, France denies it (Photo:

The French Ministry of Defense has declared another disinformation attack by Russia, specifically refuting Russian media claims about the supposed "destruction" of the SAMP/T air defense system in Ukraine, according to Le Monde.

French mercenaries

Russia claimed that on January 16, it targeted a building in Kharkiv where, allegedly, French "mercenaries" fighting against Russian terrorists on the side of Ukraine were located. However, no evidence was provided to support this claim.

The French Ministry of Defense emphasized that there are no French mercenaries in Ukraine or elsewhere. Sebastien Lecornu, the Minister of the Armed Forces of France, stated that, unlike other countries, France does not use mercenaries. He condemned and increased monitoring of such manipulations, anticipating that Russia's disinformation maneuvers would continue in light of the increased French military assistance to Ukraine.

Destruction of SAMP/T

The Russian media's claim about the "destruction" of the Franco-Italian SAMP/T air defense system delivered to Ukraine was also dismissed by France. The French authorities could not confirm this information and warned about Russia's attempts to spread fakes.


The SAMP/T system is an anti-missile system designed to protect the battlefield and critical objects from cruise missiles, piloted and unmanned aerial vehicles, and tactical ballistic missiles. Developed by the European consortium Eurosam, SAMP-T can destroy aerodynamic targets up to 150 kilometers away at an altitude of up to 25 kilometers. It can counter ballistic missiles at a range of up to 25 kilometers.

More details on the systems covering the Ukrainian sky and why achieving 100% protection is unrealistic - in the RBC-Ukraine material.