Russia looks for thieves who hit Putin’s nuclear plane – National

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A Russian plane designed to survive a nuclear war was no match for a group of suspected thieves, who police say violated the plane and stole frames of military-grade communications equipment last week.
Russian police on Wednesday announced an investigation into the theft, following media reports of Friday’s break-in.

The top secret “Doomsday Plane” is specially designed to serve as a mobile command center for the Russian leader in the event of nuclear war. It is a modified Soviet airliner that dates back to the last days of the Cold War and is packed with the communications technology needed to operate the country from the air.

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Authorities say the theft occurred during maintenance work on the plane in Taganrog, a town in the southern Rostov region.

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The culprits appear to have entered through the cargo hatch before escaping with 39 electronic units, Russian media reported last Friday.

Authorities say the stolen equipment was worth around one million rubles (US $ 13,600). No suspect has been identified.

The incident has become a headache for Russian President Vladimir Putin, who recently spent large sums of money on overhauling the Russian military.

The Kremlin says it will ensure that such an incident does not happen again.

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The United States also has a Doomsday aircraft ready for nuclear war. The planes are more functional and more durable than the regular planes of the president, Air Force One.

Both countries are said to have four Doomsday planes, one of which is on standby at any time in the event of war.

With files from Reuters

© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.



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