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Russia to set up 3 divisions to counteract NATO — defense minister

May 04, 14:03 UTC+3
Two new divisions will be set up in the Western Military District while one division will be set up in the Southern Military District
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Sergey Shoigu

Sergey Shoigu

© Stanislav Krasilnikov/TASS

MOSCOW, May 4. /TASS/. Russia will set up two new divisions in its Western Military District and one division in its Southern Military District to counteract NATO buildup near its borders, Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said on Wednesday.

"The Defense Ministry is taking a number of measures to counteract the buildup of NATO forces in the immediate vicinity of Russian borders. Two new divisions will be set up in the Western Military District and one division in the Southern Military District until the end of the year," Shoigu said at a conference call.

Work is already under way to create necessary infrastructure at the places of the new divisions’ deployment, the defense minister said.

"I have given instructions to use the most advanced construction solutions to build the facilities. Specifically, block-modular structures will be used. The flow-line production technology and the delivery of modules allows erecting buildings within three or four weeks at the longest," the defense minister said.

If necessary, the structures can be promptly disassembled and moved to another place. The entire utility supply system, including boiler houses, is assembled in the same prompt manner, Shoigu said.

The Russian defense minister announced the formation of three new divisions in the western direction back in January. Later it was reported that a new motor rifle unit would be set up near Rostov-on-Don and two more such formations in the Smolensk and Voronezh Regions.

Each of the new divisions was reported to have 10,000 personnel.

Last autumn Shoigu said that since the beginning of 2015 about 30 units and forces had been created in the Western Military District. And at the end of November he declared that fifteen units had been created in the Southern Military District and the establishment of two more units was in the final phase.

According to earlier reports, the Western Military District had been reinforced with a newly-formed 1st tank army, headquartered near Moscow. A senior source in the General Staff told TASS the 20th general purpose army in the district had to be created from scratch, as most of its original forces had been handed over to the 1st tank army. The 20th army is to be stationed in five regions in the west of Russia. Its headquarters are Voronezh.

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