Russia continuing to send military hardware to Ukrainian border, says open-source intelligence team
Russia has started to send military equipment and hardware from Russia’s 1st Guards Tank Army to the border with Ukraine, an independent Russian open-source intelligence group, Conflict Intelligence Team or CIT, reported on messaging site Telegram on Feb. 13.
CIT noted that they had recently obtained footage that revealed the loading of military hardware at the Maslovka station in the suburbs of the Russian city of Voronezh in southwestern Russia.
In their analyses, CIT points out that military equipment was spotted near the railway tracks on one of their recently analyzed videos, and an echelon of Msta-S self-propelled howitzers and T-80U tanks, which are in service with Russia’s 4th Guards Tank Division, were loaded up on the tracks.
The footage also shows an empty tank transporter leaving the platform.
CIT said this means that the military equipment is being brought to the station, but not taken away.
“T-80U (tanks) of the 4th Guards Tank Division were also spotted on trains in (the city of) Belgorod and in (the village of) Vesyolaya Lopan of Belgorod Oblast, 15 kilometers from the border with Ukraine,” CIT added.
“At first we assumed that they had arrived there from Voronezh, but after checking the railway databases, it turned out that the trains were coming from the Selyatino and Kubinka-2 railway stations in Moscow Oblast, in the home base area of the 4th Guards Tank Division,” the message reads.
CIT stressed that this “indicates the transfer to the border of additional military equipment of the 1st Guards Tank Army, in addition to the one that had already been deployed at the training ground near Voronezh.”
“In addition, a train was spotted in (the town of) Alexeyevka of Belgorod Oblast that departed from the Krasny Bor railway station in Smolensk Oblast, a home base of the 49th Anti-Aircraft Missile Brigade of the 1st Guards Tank Army,” the report says.
The intelligence team added that such transfer of military equipment to the border “raises particular concern amid U.S. intelligence warnings about an alleged operation against Ukraine next week and the evacuation of foreign embassies from (the capital city of) Kyiv.”
On Feb. 11, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said that the U.S. government “continue to see very troubling signs of Russian escalation, including new forces arriving at the Ukrainian border.”
He warned that Russia could launch an invasion at any time, including during the Winter Olympics in Beijing.
On Feb. 11, the U.S.-based Politico political media outlet also reported that U.S. President Joe Biden told Western leaders that Russia would start a physical assault on Ukraine as soon as Feb. 16.
The U.S.-based Bloomberg news agency also reported that fresh Russian aggression against Ukraine could renew on Feb. 15. Russia in turn accused the Western media of a “large-scale disinformation campaign.”
Russia has deployed about 140,000 troops and equipment on the border with Ukraine.
Russia has officially denied its intention to carry out a large-scale invasion of Ukraine, while continuing to provide military assistance to its proxy groups in non-government controlled regions of Donetsk and Luhansk Oblasts.
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