Russia to Strengthen Military Contingent in Baltic Region
16:41 24.04.2015(updated 19:17 24.04.2015)
Russia would consider ways to improve the strength of the Baltic Fleet and the structure of its combined-arms contingent, Russian Defense Minister said.
MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Russia must strengthen and optimize its military contingent in the Baltic region in light of the current military-political situation, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said Friday.
'Based on a comprehensive analysis of a number of military-political, social and historical factors that influence the situation in the region, we will consider ways to improve the strength of the Baltic Fleet and the structure of its combined-arms contingent.'
'It is necessary to take steps aimed at improving effectiveness and reliability of the entire command-and-control chain on the Kaliningrad theater of operations,' Shoigu said at a meeting with top military brass in Moscow.
Earlier this year, NATO announced it would set up six new command and control units near Russia, including in the Baltic states.
Russia has repeatedly expressed concern over NATO's activities near its borders, saying that this move could contribute to further deterioration of the alliance's relations with Moscow.
NATO suspended its cooperation with Moscow shortly after Crimea rejoined Russia in March 2014, limiting contact to ambassadorial and higher levels, despite the fact that the reunification came after an overwhelming 96 percent majority of the peninsula's voters supported the move through a referendum.
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