Air defense forces from Russia and Serbia successfully coped with the tasks of their interoperability during the Slavic Shield 2021 joint drills that ended at the Batajnica airfield in the Balkan country. A ceremony was held at the Batajnica airbase in Serbia to close the Slavic Shield 2021 joint air defense exercise. The drills brought together units of the armed forces of Russia and Serbia armed with Pantsyr surface-to-air missile/gun systems. The personnel of both countries successfully practiced interoperability and the joint combat employment of air defense troops.
The joint Russian-Serbian military contingent coped with combat alert tasks to provide air defense for Belgrade, the Batajnica airbase and the Serbian central industrial region. In the course of their joint combat alert, the units of the air defense taskforce operating in a difficult jamming environment repelled a notional enemy’s massive air strike, eliminating all the aerial targets with electronic launches of surface-to-air missile systems. The crews of combat vehicles of Pantsyr anti-aircraft missile/gun systems conducted a 170km march to a new positioning area and performed live-firing against aerial and ground targets at the Pasulyanske-Levade training ground.
The Pantsir (Carapace) missile system is a family of self-propelled, medium-range surface-to-air missile and anti-aircraft artillery systems. The system is a further development of 2K22 Tunguska (NATO reporting name: SA-19/SA-N-11) and uses phased array radars for both target acquisition and tracking. The Pantsir-S1 was designed to provide point air defence of military, industrial and administrative installations against aircraft, helicopters, precision munitions, cruise missiles and UAVs; and to provide additional protection to air defence units against enemy air attacks employing precision munitions, especially at low to extremely low altitudes.
Serbia operates one battery (six units) of the Pantsir-S1, delivered in February–March 2020. Two more batteries on order. Pantsir-S1M is on order. The Pantsir-S1 were delivered by the Russian An-124 Ruslan airplane. It looks like the vehicles came from the stock as the contract itself was signed recently and was announced on January, 2020. Serbia was severely bombed in March-June 1999 by the NATO combat aircraft and seems to look forward to extend its air defense capability to be independent from the West. In October, 2019 during the Slavonic Shield joint Russian-Serbian exercises the Republic Serbia President Alexander Vucic stressed his interest to obtain the Russian long-range ADS Triumph as well.