Accessibility links

Breaking News

Kremlin Creating New Military Divisions To Counter 'NATO Buildup'

Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu
Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu

Russia's Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said on May 4 that Moscow will set up three new military divisions in the west and south of the country by the end of 2016 in response to what he called “the buildup of NATO forces in close proximity to Russia's borders."

Russia's military first announced the creation of the new divisions in January, saying the move was a "response to intensified exercises of NATO countries."

Shoigu’s statement came a day after U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter urged Russia to stop"going backwards" towards the Cold War era with "saber-rattling" and aggressive actions that have put NATO on high alert.

Carter was speaking in Germany at an inauguration ceremony for NATO’s new European commander, U.S. Army General Curtis Scaparrotti.

Carter cited Russia's intervention in eastern Ukraine, its illegal annexation of Crimea in 2014, and efforts by Moscow to intimidate its Baltic neighbors.

Based on reporting by Reuters, AFP, Interfax, and TASS

RFE/RL has been declared an "undesirable organization" by the Russian government.

If you are in Russia or the Russia-controlled parts of Ukraine and hold a Russian passport or are a stateless person residing permanently in Russia or the Russia-controlled parts of Ukraine, please note that you could face fines or imprisonment for sharing, liking, commenting on, or saving our content, or for contacting us.

To find out more, click here.