Since 2016, Russia has created more than 70 new military units in its Western Military District, including two divisions and three brigades, Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoygu said at a Defense Ministry board session.
The “situation unfolding in the western strategic direction” requires Russia to constantly improve the troops and their base systems, the defense minister explained.
According to Shoygu, new infrastructure is being created to accommodate the new units. More than 350 facilities are scheduled to be put into operation by the end of the year.
Furthermore, the district’s forces have been sent roughly 5000 units of new and modernized weapons and equipment, which will “increase the rate of equipment with modern weapons from 39% to 54%”.
On July 11, the news outlet Defense One reported based on satellite photographs that Russia is rapidly upgrading its military infrastructure in the Kaliningrad province, which borders on Poland. According to an analyst from 3Gimbals, a company specializing in machine analysis, the images are evidence of possible reinforcement of the structures in the region. The process is similar to the construction of “reinforced bunkers for explosive substances using earthen walls for safety”.
Signs of the construction of a new railway line can also be seen in the satellite images, the expert claims. Defense One points out that similar activity was documented in Abkhazia before the 2008 conflict.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has also drawn attention to Russia’s activity in the Kaliningrad province. He told RBC news agency in an interview that over the last few years Alliance representatives have noted that “Russia is militarizing the Kaliningrad province”, deploying modern weaponry there.