Using Open-Source Intelligence techniques, InformNapalm volunteers have gathered evidence proving the presence in the occupied part of Ukraine of a unit of the 25-th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade (25-th SMRB) of the Western Military District of the Russian Armed Forces.
The unit was deployed for alert missions (on a rotating basis) and reconnaissance of the designated area.
A new photo (archive photo) geotagged to Rozdolne, Ukraine, has been found in the photo album of Nikolay Anashkin, a Russian serviceman spotted by the InformNapalm OSINT experts monitoring social networks. According to satellite images of the area, there is some discrepancy between the geotagged location and the actual location. The actual shooting location (and, judging by the concentration of military equipment in the area, the base of the Russian troops) is on the premises of Vocational School No.150 which is located west of the geotagged spot: on the other bank of the river Kalmius, between Rozdolne and Vasylivka (Starobeshivsky district, Donetsk region, Ukraine); its exact coordinates are 47.610548, 38.012789.
It was also established that Nikolay Anashkin (archived social profile, photo album, profile friends) was born in Volgodonsk, is a career Russian serviceman serving at the 25-th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade (military unit No. 29760, Pskov region, Strugi Krasnye) of the Western Military District of the Russian Armed Forces. This is evidenced by the list of his profile friends and the photos of him and his fellow servicemen. Also worth noting are the photos of him and his “new friends” – local separatists and Russian mercenaries: Pozyvnoy Kuzbass, Evgeniy Ermakov, Vladimir Alexandrovich, Maxim Nakonechny, Kosta and others.
According to the information from Nikolay Anashkin’s photo album, the transfer of the 25-th SMRB’s tactical task force from Pskov region to the Ukrainian border began in late February 2016. As of April 2016, the Pskov task force was based in a temporary field camp set up in Rostov region near the Ukrainian border. All that time, the task force servicemen had been doing combat and unit training, preparing to act under the disguise of “miners”.
Note: Until now, the 25-th SMRB (military unit No. 29760) has not been featured in the InformNapalm investigations. Therefore, it has not, so far, been black-listed among Russian military units spotted on “Ukrainian missions”. See Professional Russian Army in Ukraine. Database and Visualisation and the “Units” tab in our database.
About the 25-th SMRB: The 25-th Guards Sevastopol Red Banner Latvian Riflemen Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade (military unit No. 29760, Pskov region , Strugi Krasnye) has been recently established from the former 42-nd Weapons and Equipment Storage Base. The brigade has the structure of a standard brigade of the reformed Russian Armed Forces: the Command, three battalions, a separate sniper company, a tank battalion, two self-propelled howitzer artillery battalions, a rocket artillery battalion, an antitank artillery battalion, an antiaircraft missile battalion and an antiaircraft artillery missile battalion, a reconnaissance battalion, a UAV company, an engineer battalion, an NBC protection company, a control (communication) battalion, an electronic warfare company, a control and artillery reconnaissance battery, a control and radar reconnaissance platoon, a control platoon, a recovery battalion, a logistics battalion, a headquarters company, a medical company, a military advisers platoon, a training simulator platoon, a training range and a brass band.
Military equipment used:
- 40 – T-72B main battle tanks (MBT) and 1 Т-72BKb MBT;
- 159 – MT-LB light multi-purpose armored towing vehicles;
- 18 – BM-21 “Grad” multiple rocket launchers;
- 36 – 2S1 “Gvozdika” 122mm self-propelled howitzers;
- 18 – 2S12 “Sani” 120mm heavy mortar systems;
- 12 – MT-12 “Rapira” 100mm anti-tank guns;
- 12 – 9P149 “Shturm-S” self-propelled anti-tank missile systems;
- 27 – 9K115 “Metis” anti-tank missile systems;
- 11 – BTR-80 armored personnel carriers;
- 4 – BRDM-2 amphibious armored patrol car;
- 12 – 9A33BM2(3) “Osa” armored vehicle surface-to-air missile systems;
- 6 – 9A34(35) “Strela-10” armored vehicle surface-to-air missile systems;
- 6 – 2S6M “Tunguska” self-propelled anti-aircraft guns;
- 27 – 9K38 “Igla” portable surface-to-air missiles.
This publication was prepared on the basis of an OSINT-investigation by the InformNapalm international volunteer group
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