Shoigu: training base of military higher educational institutions must meet all requirements

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Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu ordered to adjust the training facilities of military schools in the Russian Federation in accordance with modern requirements.

According to him, at present the system parameters correspond to the needs of the military education training.

“However, the training facilities of the universities do not fully meet modern requirements,” – said Shoigu at the board meeting.

According to the minister, the work in this area is already underway.

The plan also involves the comprehensive reconstruction of the Combined Arms Academy of the Armed Forces. By 2020, the university will have a helipad, hospitals, dormitories, laboratory training and fitness facilities will be reconstructed, as well as towns for firing drills and sports complexes. In addition, the Noginsk training center will have a combat vehicle fleet for practical training and a modern engineered landfill.

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Russia to Strengthen its Military Bases Abroad

1Russia is strengthening its military bases abroad as well as helping to boost the armed forces of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said.

6“In recent years, we have worked to strengthen the Russian military bases in Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan: we have increased the number of air defense units at the Kant airbase [in Kyrgyzstan], and the 201st base now has a divisional structure,” Shoigu said at a security conference in Moscow.

The International Security Conference began in Moscow Friday for the third time. The event is being attended by military experts and government officials from a number of countries, including China, Belarus, Iran, Egypt, Syria, Iraq and Serbia.

Defense ministers or deputy ministers from the member countries of the CSTO and SCO are also planning to attend the conference. Two panel discussions are expected: “The Search for Ways to Stabilize the Situation in the Middle East and North Africa” and “Afghanistan and Regional Security.”

European Union, US and NATO representatives, critical of Russia’s actions in Ukraine, refused to participate in the event.

2Previously Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said after his trip to four Latin American countries that Moscow had no plans of creating military bases in the region but might establish some sustainment centers for the Russian Navy there.

“There will be no bases – we don’t need them,” Lavrov said on Rossiya’s news show ‘Sergey Brilev’s News on Saturday,’ noting that in order for the Russian Navy to sail worldwide, it needs sustainment centers for refueling, maintenance of the vessels, and recreation of the crews.

3“We’re not after setting up such centers in every country,” the minister stressed. “We will consider the proposals and these centers will be set up wherever it would be best possible for our Navy to negotiate with the host countries,” Lavrov said.

5Back in March, there were reports that Russia may open naval bases overseas, with Argentina, Cuba, Nicaragua, and Venezuela named as possible locations. Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov then elaborated that Moscow had no intentions of setting up any military bases in Latin America and is only considering sustainment centers for Russian military ships in various ports across the globe.

At the moment, Russia has military bases in Azerbaijan, Armenia, Abkhazia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Syria, Tajikistan, and South Ossetia.

Surprise Drill Results to be Examined

V.Putin's working visit to Leningrad RegionFirst military units of Central and Western Military Districts involved in surprise military exercises came back to permanent deployment bases from the area of drills, the press service of the Defense Ministry told Itar-Tass.

5“Some part of formations from the Central Military District of motor rifle brigades of the 2nd Army and vanguard units of a separate engineering brigade and a brigade of radiation, chemical and biological security from the Western Military District came back to their bases,” the press service said. “Aircraft involved in surprise drills returned to their permanent airfields, warships of the Baltic Fleet and formations of coast guard forces came to a naval base from the maritime range,” the press service added.

Defense Minister General Sergey Shoigu set March 7 as the final date for return of military staff to their bases.

2“Trains are bringing tank units back to their bases. Several military units are on marches, military transport aviation has brought military units at a far distance back to their bases. Warships of the Northern Fleet are sailing to their anchorage site,” the press service reported.

Surprise military exercises have been held since February 26. The order to bring military units back to their bases was given by Commander-in-Chief Vladimir Putin.

Flaws and problems found during surprise military exercises of troops must be examined as quickly as possible. Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu gave the order to this effect to the chief of the Russian General Staff.

1“The chief of the General Staff must examine results of the surprise drills, flaws and problems found at the military exercises as quickly as possible. Upon results of check you must produce a report to me with concrete proposals to eliminate them,” he said at a telecom conference.

The defense minister noted that the latest surprise drills had improved noticeably as compared with previous drills. Shoigu ordered to bring back troops participating in the surprise drills to permanent bases before March 7. “I demand you must fulfil this task in an organized way, must not violate security requirements and must not put out of order weapons and military hardware,” the minister ordered, noting that only 18 pieces of military hardware turned for repair from around 3,000 pieces of military hardware involved in the surprise drills. “This is a good work for our formations to maintain technical order of weapons and military hardware,” Shoigu added.

4He recalled that around 150,000 servicemen, 90 warplanes, more than 120 helicopters, more than 880 tanks, around 1,200 pieces of military hardware and up to 80 warships and vessels were involved in the surprise exercises. Russia has fulfilled strictly provisions of the 2011 Vienna Document over numerical strength of the Ground Troops, Airborne Troops and marines involved in the military exercises.

Eight trains were used for delivery of military staff and military hardware, the minister said. A total of six multiservice firing ranges and five maritime firing grounds were used in the Barents Sea and the Baltic Sea. “Aviation was transferred to operational airfields with mid-air refuelling. A total of 47 warplanes and 43 helicopters were moved,” the defense minister noted.

Anti-terrorism measures had been taken at all military townships in the Western Military District, he added.

Practice of Surprise Military Drills Continues

5Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered an urgent military drill to test the combat readiness of the armed forces across western and central Russia. The drill included troops dealing with mock security and terrorist threats.

4“The drills are not connected with events in Ukraine at all,” Sergey Shoigu, Russia’s Defense Minister, told journalists Wednesday.

2As part of the test, several drills will be held on Russian borders with other countries, including with Ukraine. The main purpose of these drills is to check the combat readiness of the Russian armed forces, Shoigu said.

The surprise drill tested ground troops, Air Force, airborne troops and aerospace defense, according to Shoigu.

Putin ordered to “test combat readiness of troops in dealing with crisis situations that threaten the military security of the country, as well as with antiterrorist, sanitary and epidemiological, or technogenic situations,” Shoigu said.

Russian Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov said the exercises would be held in two stages – from February 27-28 and February 28 – March 3. More than 150,000 servicemen from various troop units will take part.

3Russia informed NATO of the military exercise thus fulfilling its obligations in the field of military transparency, NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen told journalists before a scheduled meeting of the alliance’s defense ministers.

“Yes, Russia has informed us about their military exercises,” Itar-tass reports, as Rasmussen stressed that Russia “lived up to all their obligations as regards transparency.”

1Moscow also notified the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) of the military exercise, according to a senior NATO official.

While Western media was quick to connect the drill to the situation in Ukraine, such exercises were proposed by Putin as early as last September and followed massive 2013 drills.

In February, the Russian Army staged a surprise ‘combat readiness’ drill in central Russia for the first time in 20 years, which was followed by a Black Sea drill in March.

1An exercise testing aerospace defense and Air Force then took place in May, involving thousands of troops with hundreds of aircraft and vehicles.

In July, a massive military drill took place in the Eastern Command. Up to 160,000 troops, 1,000 tanks and armored vehicles, 130 aircraft and 70 vessels took part in the drill.

Following the 2013 exercises, President Putin, in his capacity as Russia’s Supreme Commander-in-Chief, announced that the practice of surprise drills will continue. A comprehensive inspection of Interior Ministry troops was also ordered.

Russia to Adopt Ratnik Gear This Summer

4The Russian military will adopt domestically designed “future soldier” gear this summer, the Defense Ministry said Thursday.

1The adoption of the Ratnik gear into service has been repeatedly delayed due to uncertainty over the choice of small arms component, which is likely to include the new Kalashnikov AK-12 assault rifle. The equipment is currently in the final stages of field testing by Russian paratroopers.

5Developed as part of the soldier military equipment (BES) programme, Ratnik nicknamed “future soldier uniforms”comprises about 50 components, including firearms, body armor and optical, communication and navigation devices, as well as life support and power supply systems, and even knee and elbow pads.

Emphasis has been laid on the effective protection of a soldier on the battlefield, says the editor of the “Voyenno-Promyshlenny Kuryer”, or”Military-Industrial”, newspaper, member of the Public Council of the Russian Government’s Military-Industrial Commission, Mikhail Khodarenok. He added that “Ratnik” is better in every way than its predecessor, the battle suit “Barmitsa”, and obviously superior to its French analogue FELIN, which was originally to be considered as the main prototype. “Ratnik” is by far better in protecting servicemen from enemy small arms, as well as artillery shell and mine fragments.

3The multilayer hat can resist the hit of a bullet, fired from a distance of 5 meters to 10 meters. The overalls of the “Alutex” reinforced-fiber composite effectively protects against shell and grenade splinters, while the body armor vest, reinforced by ceramic and hybrid inserts, is effective against small arms, including armor-piercing weapons.

Available in summer and winter variants, the lightweight gear can be used by regular infantry, rocket launcher operators, machine gunners, drivers and scouts, and is claimed to provide protection against environmental threats from weapons of mass destruction and non-lethal weapons.

2The system is expected to feature at least ten modules for adaptability to varied combat environments, the news agency has earlier reported citing Russian Military-Industrial Commission first deputy chair, Yury Borisov.

New combat outfits for the armies of the world are not just updated outfits with elements of protection. These are real navigation systems that allow improving the interaction of the soldiers inside the unit thanks to communication systems and mapping. They also provide direct communication between the field and a tactical and even operational (brigade, division) level of command.

1Many other nations have similar future soldier equipment programs in progress, including the US Land Warrior, Germany’s IdZ, Britain’s FIST, Spain’s COMFUT, Sweden’s IMESS and France’s FELIN.

The Ratnik gear has been successfully tested by the Russian military.

According to Russian military sources, the “Ratnik” is better in every way than its predecessor, the battle suit “Barmitsa”, and obviously superior to its French analogue FELIN, which was originally to be considered as the main prototype.

 “Ratnik” weighs 20 kilograms, or 6 kilos less than its French analogue FELIN, and is fit for action in all conditions any time of the day.

Almost Half of Russians are for Conscript Soldiers

2Russians are divided about the use of conscript soldiers in the army, according to a survey published Tuesday.

1A total of 48 percent of Russians believe the military draft should remain a key source of manpower for the army, while 40 percent think only professional contract soldiers should serve, the poll by the independent Levada Center found.

In November 2013  Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said that the Russian army would never be fully contract: according to him, the large size of Russian Armed Forces will not allow the country to switch completely to such a system.

3Also according to the survey, more than half of respondents ( 54%) would prefer to see their family member served a year at the call , and 31% were in favor of two years service contract. In addition, almost half of Russians (48 percent) would like their children to serve in the army, while 33 percent would prefer to help their relatives dodge military service.

“Two-thirds of respondents (61 %) did not doubt the ability of the Russian army to protect the population in the event of a real threat ,” said the communiqué. While 24 % believe that the army can not now protect Russia in the case of a military threat, while another 15 % were undecided on this issue.

The poll of 1,603 respondents across 45 Russian regions was conducted on January 24-27 and has a margin of error of less than 3.4 percent.

4Russia is reforming its armed forces by shifting away from a largely inefficient body of conscripted soldiers toward a smaller professional army.

5Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said last year that Russia’s military will have 500,000 soldiers serving on professional contracts within a decade. But he acknowledged that the armed forces will continue to rely on a mix of conscripts and contracted recruits for the foreseeable future.

The country has struggled in recent years to fulfil quotas for conscripts due to widespread draft dodging and a scarcity of eligible young men, following a collapse in the birth rate during the turbulent 1990s.

1The military needs to enroll about 300,000 men during each draft to keep the number of army personnel at the required level of 1 million.

According to official data, the current strength of the Russian Armed Forces is estimated at 774,500 personnel, including 220,000 officers and about 200,000 contracted soldiers.

All Russian men between the ages of 18 and 27 are obliged by law to perform one year of military service. The shortest term of a military service contract is two years.

Russian Army Boosts Olympic Spirit

5Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu changed schedule for soldiers in all military districts of the country for the military men were able to watch broadcasts of the Olympic Games in Sochi.

2The Russian army announced that it was giving some troops an extra four hours off per day to watch television during the Olympic Games so they can root for the athletes.

“There have been changes made to the soldiers’ daily schedule to give them the opportunity to follow the Winter Olympic Games,” a statement on the Russian defence ministry’s website said.

For a month, soldiers based in the southern military district, which includes the Sochi region, will have an extra four hours per day to watch sports broadcasts on flat-screen televisions, it said.

4Even fighters who are not in the barracks can watch the competitions. “For soldiers in isolation from places of permanent deployment, automobile clubs PAC- 07, equipped with satellite TV sets will be organized”, the Defense Ministry reported.

There was a section devoted to the Olympics on the official website of the defense department. The calendar of competitions is published there, as well as information about all the athletes-soldiers.

There are 60 of them at the Olympic Games in Sochi: 33 soldiers , 28 of which are from sport troops, and 27 representatives of civil personnel of the Defense Ministry.

1Communal viewing of Olympic events during free time in the evening and after lunch is part of a month-long campaign with the slogan “Support our own!”

The idea is to “form a healthy community” and “strengthen camaraderie” among soldiers, the ministry said.

3The Russian army is one of the largest in the world and its ground forces consist of mainly young conscripts. The military has struggled for years to overcome an unappealing image of rife corruption, hazing, and outdated equipment.

1The opening ceremony for the Winter Olympics last night in Sochi, Russia had quite a number of memorable moments. But one of the most-talked about performances came from members of the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs choir and their rendition of Daft Punk’s “Get Lucky.” This is not the first time this choir has tackled this song, they posted a video of themselves singing the incredibly popular tune back in November. The world clearly needed a repeat performance, but sadly, this technically happened before the opening ceremony and was cut from the NBC live broadcast. Regardless, sing it loud and sing it proud (although half of these singers look as though they resent life), because this Grammy-winning track deserves all the love it can get.

The interior ministry has its own military troops, including conscripts.

International Anti-Mine Center to be Created in Russia

5An international anti-mine center will appear in Russia in 2014. Specialists in combating explosive devices, including improvised ones, will be trained there. Countries of the North Atlantic Alliance will participate in creating the new educational structure. It is expected that combat engineers trained at the Russian centre will be in demand in many regions of the world.

1The idea of creating an international combat engineers’ training center was put forward by Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu. The head of the Russian Defense Ministry proposed to establish a teaching center, which will train relevant specialists from different countries, and locate it in Russia. NATO representatives supported the initiative, editor-in-chief of the Arsenal Otechestva Victor Murakhovsky says.

“Russian specialists command significant respect and have years of experience in detecting and eliminating landmines and improvised explosive devices. Russian designers and manufacturers produce special technical means that not only meet the international standards, but surpass them in some areas. NATO has less experience in this field. Secondly, it is necessary to agree on common working methodologies in carrying out activities for destroying mines and other explosive devices.”

3“Of course, these are subject matter specialists. They will mainly work for security services. It will be dangerous, if the knowledge that they will receive falls into wrong hands. Mine clearance specialists are in demand in many regions where conflicts have ended, but minefields have remained. They are appropriately paid and bring great profit to states. Many countries are now engaged in training such specialists. And the creation of such a single center where different teachers could share their experiences and transfer best practices, is a very interesting initiative of Russia, which was enthusiastically embraced by all states”, expert of the Center of Political Studies of Russia Vadim Kozyulin says.

The anti-mine centre will be opened in Russia this year. This was announced by head of the Engineering Troops of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, General-Lieutenant Yuri Stavitsky. Afghans will be its first students. The teaching will be conducted in their native language. Special attention will be paid to practical training. It is assumed that not only Russian but foreign specialists as well will share their knowledge.

2It is worth noting that there is long established cooperation between the engineering services of Russia and the United States. US combat engineers have crossed the ocean many times to exchange experience with their Russian colleagues. Moreover, Russia has a constantly updated data bank on different types of explosive devices, including homemade ones, and all incidents connected with explosions are being recorded in-detail as well. The Russian military is ready to share this information with its Western partners. Against the background of a terrorist threat, which is relevant to the majority of states today, such information could be vital at a critical moment.

Russian Army Expects Less Number of Conscripts

2Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu confirmed that an increase in the number of contract soldiers in the Army will result in reduction of conscripts annually. However, generals do not plan to completely abandon conscripts recruitment. Armed Forces need professionals now and in the foreseeable future. This role is destined to military professionals. Their service and responsibilities will be easier, for example, conscripts will replace them in the protection and enforcement divisions.

Êóðñàíòû 212-ãî îêðóæíîãî ó÷åáíîãî öåíòðà ÑèáÂÎ â ×èòåProfessionalization parameters of our troops are already known. By 2017, there must be 425,000 contract soldiers, five years later their number will be nearly half a million. Given officers and warrant officers the situation at that time will be the following: about three-quarters of the army will be professional soldiers, the rest – conscripts.

GEORGIA-RUSSIA-CONFLICT-ANNUALBut how do they get as many specialists for the Army? This question has already been discussed in the Defence Ministry. There are three sources to supplement the professional part of the Army. The first one is reserve soldiers and sergeants.

After increasing military pay and the introduction of educational, housing and social benefits for the contractors, many are ready to return to the army.

Military enlistment offices and special offices are conducting their recruitment. The second source is recruits who decided to become professional soldiers after compulsory military service. As for the third source, generals have yet to develop it. It is about young people who already master or just going to get army profession in a civil university.

5To encourage people to a long and good service, the Defence Ministry think of the introduction of new financial incentives for military personnel. In particular, it is now preparing a government decree on the official ratios. The more a man will serve in the Army, the higher will be the size of the housing subsidy for him to buy an accommodation. “We would like to create such conditions in which it will be improper not to serve in the Army, and to serve their will be prestigious. We do our best for this, but it is much left to work on”, the head of the Defence Ministry said.

4We need professional soldiers to work on sophisticated weaponry and technology. The maximum use of domestic developments is the key rule of the military. We will purchase Army and Navy vehicles abroad only in the case when there are no Russian analogues.

What arsenal does the army need today ? According to Shoigu, one of the priorities is the development of long-range precision-guided weapons systems and update of the Strategic Missile Forces. “Most part of our power – both financial and organizational – is sent there”, the Minister said, adding that in the near future armed forces will be on the 100-percent level of new technology in these units.

Outsourcing Army Kitchens Canceled

1Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu canceled outsourcing method at Army kitchens. Beginning from the new year soldiers will be feed by staff cooks, however the food supply will be engaged by the military units themselves. The press service of the Defence Ministry informed about it. There are no commercial firms with the necessary equipment for cooking at testing areas, military men have still to purchase food during drills.

PICT0028The Ministry did not renew agreements with contractors for 2014 and beginning from January military cooks will prepare meals during trainings. Now civilians firms will work only with stationary canteens of cantonments and garrisons, where they will organize “buffets” for fighters.

DSC02082In this case, unlike stationary canteens, perishables will not be used at testing areas. Instead of fresh meat they will cook using stew and canned products will replace fruit, vegetables and salads.

“Perishables are very difficult to store under field conditions. To eliminate the risk of intestinal disorders and poisoning it was decided to abandon them. The quantitative norm is fully preserved,” said the press service officer Vladimir Drobyshevskiy who is in charge of army logistics.

Ministry of Defence will update equipment and utensils which costs almost 1 billion rubles. New kitchen trailers, mobile breadmakers, vans for food transportation, as well as more than 40 million units of disposable tableware will be procured.

???????????????????????????????The Defence Ministry claimed that during the reform years soldiers do not forgot how to cook edible food. “The equipment has not disappeared anywhere, everything is in good condition. Cooking courses are also preserved as well as cooking technology in the field conditions. So there are no problems for returning to independent feeding of soldiers”, assured Vladimir Drobyshevskiy.

2He added that the new kitchen trailers and vans for food transportation which will be purchased in 2014 are only the beginning of a large-scale rearmament of the army cooking appliances in combat conditions. Until 2020 it is planned to upgrade 70 % of the equipment of mobile canteens. Now the Russian army operates about 10 thousand field kitchens.

PICT0106Executive secretary of the Russian Union of Committees of Soldiers ‘ Mothers Valentina Melnikova is sure that field kitchens should be serviced only by contractors, otherwise mess duty will reappear in the Army, and recruits will be forced to wash boilers.

“What the outsourcing was introduced for? To rid the soldiers of functions not related to the military service. Now if everything comes back as it was, the officers again will have a reason to blackmail soldiers with mess duty, injustice and conflicts will arise. Besides inexperienced fighters can get a bunch of injuries and who knows what they will cook. We stand for professionalism in the army – in everything, including food,” Melnikova said.