Conflict Intelligence Team (CIT) reported on the transfer of Iskander missile launchers from the Far East to the west of Russia. Journalists drew attention to published on Twitter on January 11, a video taken from TikTok. The video was filmed in the Far East and shows the 9K720 Iskander-M operational-tactical missile system covered with a tarpaulin, loaded onto railway platforms.
The same, only less neatly covered vehicles of the missile system, are visible on another video, filmed in the Sverdlovsk region and uploaded on January 13. It also depicts road trains with KamAZ-44108 truck tractors and flatbed semi-trailers. Apparently, they are used to transport long (about 7 m) missiles of the complex.
On another A video released on January 11 shows the same road trains loaded with containers likely to contain Iskander missiles, CIT believes.
According to indirect information from open databases, trains with this military cargo left the Divisional station in Ulan-Ude and from the Birobidzhan-2 station, near which the 103rd and 107th missile brigades are deployed, respectively. These formations, armed with Iskanders, are part of the 36th and 35th combined arms armies, whose units began advancing westward earlier.
In the spring of 2021, Iskanders were spotted in the Voronezh region, allegedly belonging to the 119th missile brigade from the 41st combined arms army. Then she was transferred to the Pogonovo training ground south of Voronezh. Such a missile brigade is an army-level tool designed to suppress enemy air defense and missile defense systems. This means that, most likely, not individual battalion-tactical groups are being transferred from the Eastern Military District, but significant forces of the armies stationed there.
The Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation previously stated that the transfer of units and formations of the Air Defense Forces is associated with a “sudden check” of combat readiness. At the same time, it is known that there are still 8 months left before the major exercises in the Vostok-2022 district. In addition, in 2014, the transfer of Russian regular units was also carried out under the pretext of preparing for the exercises, but in the end they took part in the aggression on the territory of Ukraine.
Earlier, CIT reported on the transfer of tanks, infantry fighting vehicles, Grad and Uragan multiple launch rocket systems to the western regions of the Russian Federation, SAM “Buk”. In recent months, experts have raised fears that such a military build-up near the borders with Ukraine could mean preparing for invasion.
The Russian authorities insist that they do not hatch any aggressive plans. On January 14, the Ministry of Defense announced the start of a check of the combat readiness of troops in the Eastern Military District, in which part of the formations and military units “will make marches in a combined way to unfamiliar training grounds located at a considerable distance from the points of permanent deployment, to perform combat training tasks.”
Abroad, these statements are not trusted. January 14 at the White House and the Pentagon reportedthat the US authorities have information that Russia is preparing a “false flag” provocation to justify the invasion of Ukraine. The Kremlin called these reports “unfounded.”