There are fears of an escalation of Russian President Vladimir Putin's war in Ukraine as his country test launched a new Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM).

The Sarmat missile, also known as Satan 2, will make his enemies "think twice," said Putin. It will also provide "food for thought for those who try to threaten Russia," he said, as reported by Daily Mail.

On Wednesday, the first launch was carried out from an underground silo at the Plesetsk spaceport in Russia. This happened at a moment of heightened tensions after Putin threatened the use of nuclear weapons in response to perceived provocation from the West.

The 16,000 miles per hour missile, which has been in development for long, could carry 12 nuclear warheads, destroy the UK and hit any target on earth, claimed the Kremlin. Putin has called it "invincible," and it is among Russia's next-generation missiles.

The Russian Defense Ministry said Wednesday that "a Sarmat fixed-based ICBM was successfully launched from a silo launcher." It further added that the launch tasks had been completed in full, and that design characteristics had been "confirmed at all stages of its flight," according to The EurAsian Times.

Last month Reuters reported that Russia did not unveil a new missile this year that could destroy all living things in one strike. It was claimed by social media users that the RS-28 Sarmat, an ICBM dubbed Satan 2 by analysts in the West, was revealed in the days after Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine in late February.

One Facebook post on Feb. 25 said that Russia unveiled "Satan 2 liquid fueled nuclear missile capable of destroying everything breathing in the world." It was claimed that the weapon was developed in case America, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the West “interferes.” But this suggestion was not accurate.

According to Russian news agency TASS, the missile has been in development since the 2000s, and is due to replace older missiles developed in the 1970s.

According to one expert, the claim that Satan 2 can destroy all living things is missing context. Professor Malcolm Chalmers from the Royal United Services Institute, said that claims that a "large nuclear attack would kill" all living beings are sometimes made as a result of wider climate-changing consequences like "a nuclear winter." He noted that this should "not be ruled out, but would at a minimum require hundreds of warheads," and not just one missile.

Vladimir Putin
Russia's President Vladimir Putin visits the Vostochny cosmodrome, some 180 km north of Blagoveschensk, Amur region, on April 12, 2022. Photo by Mikhail Klimentyev/Sputnik/AFP via Getty Images

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