Don’t mess with Donbass: Massive Russian military drills send warning to Ukraine

Friday, August 26, 2016
By Paul Martin

By Eduard Popov
Fort-Russ.com
August 26, 2016

On August 25th, a sudden check of Russia’s armed forces was launched. Troops of the Southern as well as part of the forces and equipment of the Western and Central Military districts, the Northern Fleet, air forces, and airborne command were put on full alert and combat readiness. The drill will last from August 25th to the 31st. Simultaneously, active preparation for the “Caucasus-2016” strategic exercise is underway in the Southern Military District.

The ongoing drill is the largest one that the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation have held in a year and a half. Attention should be drawn to the fact that the center of military exercises has shifted to the South. In June-early July of this year, basic exercises were held in North-West Russia in response to NATO military activity in the Baltic countries.

It’s difficult not to see a foreign policy motivation in the choice of these districts for a sudden armed forces check. The Southern and Western Military Districts of Russia border with Ukraine. Meanwhile, on the border with Russian Crimea, Ukrainian troops are in full combat readiness. What’s more, the intensity of UAF shellings of the republics of Donbass (including the use of volley fire systems) is growing. According to reports from the DPR’s military leadership, Ukraine has deployed 140 additional units of military vehicles to the contact line.

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