Deputy Minister of Defense of Great Britain Anabel Goldie
readiness to provide Ukraine with highly effective ammunition .
Even earlier, Russia declared that the transfer of shells with depleted uranium would be considered as providing Ukraine with nuclear weapons.
However, according to Goldie, these munitions have nothing to do with nuclear weapons and are highly effective against modern tanks and armored vehicles.
Depleted uranium: what is it and what kind of projectiles are we talking about
Shells with depleted uranium / Photo: defense24.pl
On the Polish portal Defence24, an entire article
to which projectiles we could be talking about.
Most likely, we are talking about APFSDS ammunition, which is manufactured in Great Britain and the USA.
The main feature of these shells is that the depleted uranium in them is used only in the core.
What is depleted uranium?
Natural uranium is known to consist of 99.27% of the isotope U-238, 0.72% of the isotope U-235, and 0.0055% of the isotope U-234.
Only the U-235 isotope is used in nuclear weapons and nuclear installations.
For this purpose, during the production of nuclear fuel, natural uranium is enriched by dividing isotopes by mass.
Depleted uranium is a by-product of this enrichment.
Most of the radioactive isotopes (U-235 and U-234) are extracted during the enrichment stage, so depleted uranium is considered even less radioactive than uranium ore.
The dose of external radiation from depleted uranium is only 60% of that given by natural uranium of the same mass.
Another feature of depleted uranium is its high hardness and density.
It is precisely because of these qualities that it is widely used in the production of military armor (for example, in M1 Abrams tanks) and ammunition (most often in projectile cores).
Although depleted uranium has little radioactivity, it is still considered carcinogenic and toxic.
But no more than ordinary arsenic.
Its main problem is that a person can inhale the dust that is formed after the destruction of shells.
However, in all cases when such ammunition was used, no harmful effects on the human body or the environment were confirmed.
For example, according to the results of a study of the impact of depleted uranium on veterans of the war in Iraq, they did not have any health problems.
In the Italian press after the war in Yugoslavia, there were some local reports about the consequences of using shells with depleted uranium.
However, the UNEP investigation proved that the use of such munitions did not affect the population, combatants or the environment.
The issue was investigated by Italian scientists, who confirmed only a slightly increased content of uranium in the soil, but its amount did not exceed permissible standards.
Secretary of the Parliamentary Committee on National Security, Defense and Intelligence, Roman Kostenko, also said
that shells with depleted uranium do not pose a radiation threat.
According to him, these are simply ammunition with a core, which is characterized by a high penetration capability of all armor.
He also added that it is quite cynical to hear statements from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation about their alleged "concerns for the health of Ukrainians", because they launch rocket attacks and hit civilian objects almost every day.
The Kremlin's reaction to the supply of shells with depleted uranium to Ukraine
It was expected that Russia would react almost instantly to the information about the provision of shells with depleted uranium to Ukraine.
At a briefing after talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping, Vladimir Putin traditionally threatened Kyiv if the intention of the Ukrainian allies is implemented.
He once again emphasized that "the West has really decided to fight with Russia to the last Ukrainian, not in words. But if all this happens, then Russia will be forced to react accordingly."
There was also a reaction from the Minister of Defense of the Russian Federation, Sergei Shoigu, who hinted that Ukraine could once again violate the "red lines".
And the representative of the Russian Foreign Ministry, Maria Zakharova, called the new idea of Great Britain "apocalyptic" and created according to the "Yugoslav scenario".
She reported that shells with depleted uranium contaminate the earth and cause oncology in the people who live on it.
Margarita Simonyan, the top propagandist of the Russian Federation, also issued her tirade about new ammunition, who again wants to "liberate Ukrainian lands from Ukrainians."
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