Russia: US PMCs preparing chemical attack in Ukraine
Russia's Defense Minister Sergei Shoygu discusses the presence of US paramilitary troops in Ukraine, ship deployment in the Pacific, US military presence near Russia's borders, and his country's bases in the Arctic.
Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoygu spoke on Tuesday at an extended meeting of the Russian Defense Ministry, attended by Russian President Vladimir Putin, on a number of issues concerning rising tensions in the region, highlighting that US private military contractors (PMCs) are currently planning on staging false-flag attacks in Ukraine.
These US PMCs, which are currently located in Ukraine's Donetsk region, are preparing a provocation with chemical components in eastern Ukraine, he said.
"Tanks with unidentified chemical components have been delivered to the cities of Avdeevka and Krasny Liman to commit provocations," adding that there are about 120 employees of US PMCs training Ukrainian special forces in Donetsk.
8,000 US troops dispatched near Russian borders
Shoygu also touched on the subject of the US military presence near Russia's borders, saying the United States has already dispatched about 8,000 troops in Eastern Europe.
"The aggravation of the military-political situation in the world continues to evolve ... Tensions continue to rise on the western and eastern frontiers of Russia. The US continues to build up an advanced military presence close to the Russian borders. American military units with a total number of about 8,000 servicemen are dispatched on a rotational basis to Eastern Europe," Shoygu said.
He also noted that the military potential of the Russian army increased by 12.8% in the last year and added that he ordered the armed forces to conduct strategic military exercises "Vostok" (East) and "Grom" (Thunder) in 2022.
Russia conducts first covert deployment of ships in Pacific Ocean
Moreover, the Russian Navy, in a first, conducted a covert deployment of ships in a remote region of the Pacific Ocean during its exercises, the Defense Minister said.
Russia has also worked to secure its borders in the Arctic from foreign attacks by constructing military bases in the Arctic, also deploying missile and air defense systems.
Shoygu said that Russia completed construction on two military bases, deploying air defense units and coastal missile systems. Five airfields are also currently being reconstructed, such that Russia will be able to cover its Arctic borders against military attacks.
Russian submarine fires Kalibr missile from Sea of Japan at coastal target
Russia has launched a Kalibr cruise missile from the Sea of Japan at a coastal target 1000 kilometers away, its Pacific Fleet said on Tuesday. The missile was fired from Russia's diesel-electric submarine Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky.
"The newest diesel-electric submarine Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky launched" a Kalibr cruise missile "at a ground target from a submerged position in the Sea of Japan. At the estimated time, the missile hit the coastal target position on the tactical field of Surkum [in the Khabarovsk region]. The firing range exceeded 1,000 kilometers," the fleet's statement said.