Russian military pulling 60-year-old tanks from storage to stem losses

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Russia’s premier tank force is expected to be re-equipped with Soviet-made tanks first fielded in 1954 to make up for combat losses.

In its latest update the UK Ministry of Defence says there is a “realistic” possibility” that the 60-year-old tanks will be supplied to units including the 1st Guards Tank army, which had been expected to receive the next-generation T-14 Armata main battle tank from 2021.

The ministry said approximately 800 T-62s have been pulled from storage since 2022 and have been retrofit for use in the conflict but lack the modern explosive reactive armour needed to defend against contemporary tank platforms.

In Other Developments


* At least one person was wounded in the southern Russian region of Belgorod on Monday after Russian forces shot down three missiles, the governor of the region bordering Ukraine said.

* The head of Russia’s Wagner mercenary force warned that Russia’s position around the eastern Ukrainian city of Bakhmut was in peril unless his troops got ammunition, the latest sign of tension between the Kremlin and the private militia chief.

* A woman and two children were killed in Russian mortar shelling of a village in the southern Ukrainian region of Kherson, the head of Ukraine’s presidential office said.

* The Russian army hit a command centre of the Ukrainian forces’ Azov Regiment in southeastern Zaporizhzhia region, the Russian Defence Ministry said. The ministry did not elaborate on the attack. Reuters could not independently verify the account.

* The death toll from a Russian missile strike that hit an apartment block in the southern Ukrainian city of Zaporizhzhia rose to 11 on Saturday after a woman’s body was found in the debris, the state emergency service said.

* Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu has visited Mariupol, the defence ministry said, the city in Ukraine’s eastern Donetsk region captured by Russian forces last year after a months-long siege.


* Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said that Ankara is working hard to extend a U.N.-backed initiative that has enabled Ukraine to export grain from ports blockaded by Russia.

* Two Ukrainian pilots are in Arizona to fly flight simulators and be evaluated by the U.S. military, two U.S. officials said, as Washington remains mute on whether it will send fighter jets or sophisticated remotely piloted drones to Kyiv.

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