"On December 26, 2017, a combat team of the Strategic Missile Force test-fired an RS-12M Topol intercontinental ballistic missile from the Kapustin Yar state central combined arms training range in the Astrakhan Region," Russia’s Defense Ministry said Tuesday, Defense World reported citing TASS.
"The launch was aimed at testing perspective armament for intercontinental ballistic missiles," the ministry said.
The RS-12M Topol (SS-25 Sickle) is a single-warhead intercontinental ballistic missile, which entered service in 1985. It has a maximum range of 10,000 km (6,125 miles) and can carry a nuclear warhead with a yield of up to 550 kilotonnes.
The launch was seen in the Russian-occupied Donbas, according to a Germany’s Bild journalist Julian Roepke.
#NEWS#Russia test fired an RS-12M Topol intercontinental ballistic missile this morning to "develope effective means of overcoming anti-ballistic missile defense".— Julian Röpcke (@JulianRoepcke) December 26, 2017
The launch was visible in Russian-occupied eastern #Ukraine. pic.twitter.com/4TrlGCDLeJ
Meanwhile, some social media users believed traces in the night sky were a UFO sighting.