Military authorities in Ukraine believe the number of Russian troops within and close to its borders has risen to more than 50,000, raising fears of a substantial escalation in the conflict raging in Ukraine’s eastern regions.
Almost 9,000 Russian Federation Armed Forces personnel are believed to be based inside Ukraine, according to reports from the country’s National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) seen by The Independent on Sunday. The rest are based in the neighbouring Rostov region of Russia, including mechanised assault units and communications command systems.
This is in addition to 33,400 so-called “illegal armed formations” of Russian-backed separatist soldiers inside eastern Ukraine, with 400 main battle tanks and close to 2,000 armoured troop carriers reported to be at “full combat readiness”. ∞∞∞∞∞ MORE »»»»