MOSCOW, October 27. /TASS/. The Russian Defense Ministry is neutralizing the challenges and threats along the country’s western borders by improving the combat strength of Western Military District troops, Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said.
"In these circumstances, we are implementing a series of measures to neutralize the evolving challenges and threats. In accordance with the plan of work, we are improving the combat strength of Western Military District troops and their deployment," Shoigu said at a meeting of the Russian Defense Ministry’s board.
According to the minister, more than 20 organizational events aimed at boosting the military district’s combat potential were held in 2017.
The military and political situation at Russia’s western border remains tense and tends to aggravate, according to Shoigu.
"First of all, I want to note that the military and political situation at our western borders remains tense and tends to aggravate," the defense minister said at the ministry’s board meeting.
Four NATO multinational battalion-level tactical groups with a total strength of up to 5,000 servicemen have been deployed in the Baltic states and Poland. Besides, an armored brigade and a combat aviation brigade of the US Army are stationed in Poland and Germany. Work is under way in Eastern European countries to deploy US missile shield elements, the Russian defense minister said.
"The intensity and the scope of operational and combat training of the armed forces of the alliance’s member states near our borders are growing. In the past three months alone, over 30 exercises have been held on the territory of Eastern Europe and the Baltic states," Shoigu said.
The Western Military District’s armed forces will receive more than 1,800 pieces of new modernized equipment before the end of 2017, Shoigu said.
"Great attention is being paid to supplying the army with modern arms, military and special equipment. By the end of the year, it will receive more than 1,800 pieces of new and modernized equipment, the supplies of which coincide with construction of infrastructure for its storage and service," he said.
Special attention is being paid to improvement of the qualification level of servicemen and military authorities, the minister said.