Russia delays Bulava missile test launch

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Russia's test launch of its new Bulava intercontinental missile was delayed due to a malfunction on the nuclear submarine supposed to fire it, an official said on Sunday.

"The launch from (nuclear submarine) Yury Dolgoruky was set for Saturday but it did not take place due to a malfunction in the submarine energy systems," the official from the Sevmash navy base in Severodvinsk told Interfax.

The submarine was in the arctic White Sea at the time of the incident and was forced to return to base without completing the mission, the official said.

A total of 15 Bulava missile tests have been carried out since 2005, but only seven of them have been considered a success.

The missile's incorporation into the armed forces is part of a wide-ranging military reform aimed at updating the armed forces' Soviet-era structures and equipment to bring them in line with the demands of modern warfare.

© 2011 AFP

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