Russian Defence Ministry Board Holds Offsite Meeting in Sevastopol
(Source: Russian Ministry of Defence; issued June 20, 2018)
Today, Russian Minister of Defence General of the Army Sergei Shoigu chaired an offsite meeting of the Russian Defence Ministry Board in Sevastopol.

Before speaking on the agenda of the session, the Russian Defence Minister emphasized that it was the first time as such event took place in the Crimea.

The unique joint force grouping is being reinforced on the peninsula on a regular basis. A potential adversary will not stand a chance against Russian hi-tech modern armaments in service with the force grouping.

“It is obvious that global situation remains strained. The new U.S. Nuclear Strategy considers Russia to be the main adversary”, Sergei Shoigu stated, adding that in light of this, the Pentagon modernizes tactical nuclear weapons and storage facilities in Europe, and involves pilots from non-nuclear NATO-members in trainings.

According to the Russian Minister of Defence, the U.S. missile defence complexes deployed in Romania in 2016, and those to be deployed in Poland, undermine regional stability.

“Since 2015 the strength of the NATO contingent in Baltic States, Poland, Romania and Bulgaria has increased from 2,000 to 15,000 troops amid hysteria of Baltic and Poland’s leadership on alleged aggression prepared by Russia. Besides, during drills, the strength of NATO contingent reaches 40,000-60,000 troops”, Sergei Shoigu reminded.

Sergei Shoigu also stressed that the NATO Council session of June 8, 2018, mad decision on establishing two new commands responsible for sea lance defence in the North Atlantic, and for operational deployment from the United States mainland to the European theatre.

Russian Defence Minister also emphasized that transport infrastructure is being constantly modernized for deployment of troops in the Eastern Europe. Border crossing procedures simplify for troops.

The NATO plans to keep 30 battalions, 30 air squadrons and 30 warships ready for deployment in 30 days from 2020.

At the same time, Russia does not build up military presence at borders with the Baltics.

Russia develops its Armed Forces only on its territory by modernizing control systems and organizational structures within current military strength.

Its combat potential is being increased due to intensifying combat training and rearmament programme.

Therefore, Sergei Shoigu offered to start discussing results of tendering the State Defence Order and suggestions on any amendments to it.

The Russian Defence Minister stated that by the end of last year, standby troops have been armed with modern weapons by 59.5%. This year it is planned to achieve 62% in this sphere.

The head of the military department stressed that armed forces are being rearmed in accordance with the State Armaments Programme for 2018-2027.

At present, troops have already received more than 300 pieces of military hardware, some 400 overhauled means. Besides, more than 1,200 pieces of military equipment have undergone scheduled maintenance.

Over 2,800 state contracts have already been inked which is 93% of the Stated Defence Order for 2018.

According to Sergei Shoigu, it is important to ensure efficient using of budget savings achieved through tendering process. These funds will be involved in addressing priority areas of developing the Russian Armed Forces.

First and foremost, it refers to complex development of the Strategic Nuclear Forces, general-purpose forces and C2 system.

The second issue on the agenda concerned unified domestic hardware and software platforms used by the Ministry of Defence.

Innovative infrastructure will ensure development and implementation of domestic hardware and software platforms.

As the head of the Russian Defence Ministry said, they will be implemented on the basis of the Era military innovation technopolis which is to be open in September this year.

Its territory will include scientific and laboratory complex, with more than 800 units of unique laboratory and experimental equipment, as well as design centres, robotics, experimental sites. More than 1,000 apartments are to be provided for young scientists.

It is planned to carry out complex applied and exploratory researches, as well as advanced developments in eight priority areas - artificial intelligence, IT-systems, robotics and others.

The participants of the meeting considered how the plan of activities of the Southern Military District is being implemented.

Minister of Defence reminded that 13 large-scale drills have been held since the beginning of the year in the southwest strategic area, which involved about 40,000 troops, 2,000 pieces of military hardware.

"It forces us to take symmetrical measures to neutralize emerging threats, and combine strategic deterrence measures with increasing combat capabilities of the troops of the Southern Military District," Sergei Shoigu said.

The Minister of Defenсe noted that the April comprehensive inspection of the military district, which included about 1,500 control drills, confirmed the high level of operational and combat training.

The head of the military department proposed to discuss the course of measures to neutralize military menaces in this strategic direction.

Sergei Shoigu also introduced a new member of the board - Deputy Minister of Defenсe Alexey Krivoruchko.

Defence Minister explained that Alexey Krivoruchko will be responsible for organizing military support of the troops and implementation of the State Armament Program in the interests of the Defenсe Ministry.

The leadership of the Armed Forces, Sergey Aksenov, the head of the Republic of Crimea, Dmitry Ovsyannikov, the Governor of Sevastopol, representatives of public authorities, military-industrial complex and public organizations took part in the board meeting.

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