Today, the Russian armed forces struck Kyiv with Kh-101 cruise missile that was manufactured in the fourth quarter of 2023. This was reported by the Defense Express journal after examination of a photo of the missile's remains.

The article noted that prior to January 2023 the ten-digit serial number applied to each missile and its components identified where and when it had been manufactured. In particular it was possible to easily identify the country of origin of the missile’s components

Since the beginning of last year, Russia has been attempting to disguise this information, initially by using a grinder to remove the number.

The latest missiles are now marked with up to thirteen apparently randomly generated incomprehensible numbers. The photo of the missile downed on Jan. 2 has the serial number - 3152639830011.

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According to Defense Express, "315" - is the beginning of the serial numbers for missiles manufactured around 2023, and "263" is the beginning of the serial numbers manufactured after 2020.

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"The indication of the 4th quarter of 2023 as the time of production of the downed X-101 is "sewn" in the number 9 (in other words, "5" should be subtracted from the seventh digit in the serial number, and this will give the number of the quarter in which the missile was manufactured)," the publication explains.

The Kremlin uses this disguise of missile serial numbers to conceal the possible origin of the missile components as much as possible.

The authors add that Russia's use of a missile manufactured last quarter does not mean that Russia's missile arsenal is now running out.

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Also, the rate of missile production will affect the intervals between possible future strikes on Ukraine.

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