NewsRussian military bases near Finland border nearly emptied amid Ukraine conflict

Russian military bases near Finland border nearly emptied amid Ukraine conflict

Russia has deployed equipment and soldiers. Empty spaces near the border.
Russia has deployed equipment and soldiers. Empty spaces near the border.
Images source: © MAXAR YLE
Violetta Baran

19 June 2024 18:23

Russian military bases near the border with Finland, despite Moscow's threats regarding the country's accession to NATO, are almost empty. Russia has moved personnel and equipment to Ukraine, reports the Finnish service yle.fi, citing intelligence sources and satellite images.

When Finland announced its intention to join NATO, then-Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu stated that Russia was taking "appropriate countermeasures." He also announced an increase in military presence near the border. Despite these threats, Finland became a member of the Alliance a year ago. Has more Russian military personnel and equipment appeared at the border?

The Finnish service yle.fi decided to investigate. It turned out that Russian military bases near the Finnish border had emptied. Equipment and soldiers were removed, and only instructors and recruits remained at the bases.

Russian bases emptied

"On average, 80 percent of the equipment and soldiers were sent to the war in Ukraine," a high-ranking officer from Finnish military intelligence told yle.fi.

According to him, Russia is "stripping" military equipment and personnel from its bases not only near the border with Finland but from all over Russia, except for the Moscow region.

Finnish intelligence reports are confirmed by satellite images from the yle.fi service. They show that military trucks, tanks, guns, and armoured vehicles have disappeared from the parking lots near the bases.

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