Units of the Russian Armed Forces Which Have Been Deployed to Fight in Eastern Ukraine

Last updated: October 13, 2014 20:07 UTC

Since August 2014 I have been reviewing information on Russian military forces that are concentrated on the eastern border of Ukraine. So far we have identified approximately 50 different units deployed for the invasion. Many of these units have already crossed into eastern Ukraine and have participated in combat against the Ukrainian Armed Forces. This article aims to summarize the available information as currently known. The article presents the information as per available sources, but obviously will not reflect the full picture of Russian military intervention in Ukraine.

Russian forces on border with Ukraine

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The Tour of Duty of the 200th Special Purpose Separate Motor Rifle Brigade of the Northern Fleet of the Russian Navy in Rostov Region and in Ukraine.

Shelling of Ukrainian territory by Russian artillery was discussed several times in the past. There is much evidence of it on the Web. We were able to identify multiple Russian army units which performed bombardments of military convoys and bases of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in the territories adjacent to the Russian border, fired from both Russian territory and within Ukraine.

In an effort to gather evidence of the direct involvement of Russian Armed Forces in an undeclared war against Ukraine, we found fresh photos and videos showing  “wandering raids” of a rocket artillery unit of a battalion tactical group of 200th Separate Motor Rifle Brigade of the Northern Fleet of the Russian Navy.

According to the existing documents, day and night bombardments were performed from locations in Rostov region close to Ukrainian border (presumably from the areas near the villages of Uglerodovsky, Anikin, and Gukovo) and directly from Ukrainian territory, near Krasnodon. See the photo attachement of 26 slides, and videos:

— As Luhansk People Republic.  A volley of a “Grad” battery, July 2014; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dww-9LUtCRU&feature=youtu.be

– A night volley of a “Grad” battery; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hTyAewgr_UA&feature=youtu.be

– A lot of fun in Gukovo. An MLRS volley to Ukrainian territory. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XtH9ZpfmaMw&feature=youtu.be

The first batch of photographs show the units artillery detachments



This 2nd batch of photographs below show the combat and transport vehicles of the combined unit. The vehicles lack license plates, but they have instead affectionate names of mothers and loved ones like “Antonina Ivanovna,” “Nafisa,” “Kristina,” or Soviet symbols and slogans such as «Death to the fascists,» «For Stalin,» «Death to Aydar,» and other nonsense.

Photos and videos were obtained from servicemen of 200th Brigade of the Northern Fleet.


4-t-72-za-stalina-1024x6885-sau-akaciy-1024x6466-btr-80-sssr-1024x6808-antonina-grad-1024x73610-grad-kristina-1024x690See also other texts on this subject:

200th Separate Motor Rifle Brigade of the Northern Fleet of the Russian Navy in Ukraine;                                                                                             


— 291st artillery brigade’s “Tour of duty” from Crimea to Donbass; https://burkonews.info/291st-artillery-brigades-tour-duty-crimea-donbass/
– About flying ”Grad” MLRS https://www.facebook.com/irakli.komaxidze/posts/626503984129518

– Identification of the Russian invasion forces. The units and their losses in Ukrainian territory.


– Identification of Military Units and the Armament of Artillery Elements of the Russian Invasion Forces;

Author: Irakly Komaxidze

(с) This information was gathered exclusively for the project InformNapalm. Copying and use of the materials are allowed provided that a reference to the author and a link to our website are given.
Russian original:



Translated by: Maria Holubeva

Edited by: Max Alginin

News of Deployment the 5th Tank Brigade of the Russian Eastern Military District to the Ukrainian border.

That is not for the first time that I write about the re-deployment of Russian troops from Eastern Siberia and the Far East to the Ukrainian border, but we haven’t yet seen much data to confirm all the information. However this information gradually becomes more concrete over time.  Here we present evidence of the deployment of the 5th Tank Brigade of the 36th Army of the Eastern Military Command, military unit 46108, place of permanent deployment – Buryatia, Ulan-Ude town, Street Devisionnaya.na-kiev-bmp-1024x844 na-fone-bmp

Based on the acquired photo materials and information, a detachment of the 5th Tank Brigade was redeployed to Rostov region at the end of October. According to available information we can estimate the deployment strength of a battalion tactical group (BTG), which comprises tanks (T-72), artillery (self-propelled howitzers “Akatsiya”) and infantry fighting vehicles (BMP).  The vehicles are mainly manned by contract soldiers from Tuva and Buryatia. Currently the BTG has been deployed as a field camp between Matveyevo-Kurgansk and Myasnikovsky area of Rostov region. From a strategic point of view this is a convenient site for further deployment to Mariupol and Donetsk.

Pay attention to the vehicles including the first picture of the BMP bearing  a “ Towards Kiev” inscription on it

Related references to this unit include:

  • Identification of RF military invasion forces and their losses on the territory of Ukraine;


  • Subdivision of the 7th armored brigade of the Central military command as part of the invasion forces (the list of military units, redeployed to Rostov region from northern parts of RF)


  • Return of the 28th motorized rifle brigade from Yekaterinburg in Rostov region;


  • Russian armored column near the Ukrainian border – November the 14th (presumably the artillery of the above mentioned military unit).


  • Units deployed from the Far East which comprise troops from Buryatia.


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Author: Irakly Komakhidze

Translator: Roman Vlasof

Buryat community against the war in Ukraine

For several days now we have been witnessing the saga of the deployment of military troops from the Eastern Military Distinct of Russia to the Ukrainian border. Buryat servicemen from Ulan Ude and Kyakhta are deployed to the Rostov area under the pretense of military exercises. Upon arrival, contracted servicemen are instructed that they could be engaged in the “humanitarian” operation in the territory of Ukraine, and they are made to sign non-disclosure agreements.

russia-zabaykalsky (buratya)

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Unit of 79th Rocket Artillery Brigade, Western Military District, among the group of Russian Invasion forces.

In our efforts to detect and identify the military units and weapons of the Rostov group of the Russian invasion forces we found evidence of the presence of a new, never before observed unit of rocket artillery of the 79th Rocket Artillery Brigade, military unit 53956, Western Military District, permanently based in Tver.




79_279_3Judging from the available information and photos, the unit of the rocket brigade was transferred to Rostov Region toward the end of September 2014. At this time, it’s stationed near Millerovo airfield (the main camp of the Rostov group of the invasion forces).

We have no data about the composition of the unit. We can only assume that it consists of one battalion of 300-mm multiple rocket launch systems «Smerch» (four launch vehicles). The personnel deployed to Rostov region is rotated periodically and consists of contract servicemen.

Brief note: 79th Guards Rocket Artillery Novozybkov Orders of Red Flag, Suvorov, and Alexander Nevskiy Brigade m/u 53956 of the Western Military District is based in Tver. It’s equipped with 12 300-mm MRL «Smerch» (9A52) and consists of 3 rocket artillery battalions (four launch vehicles each). As of 2013, the brigade commander was colonel M. Oskolkov (this is like magic, even the commander’s last name means “shrapnel”.)

More details and photos regarding this military unit is available here: http://jury-tver.livejournal.com/147820.html and http://jury-tver.livejournal.com/175208.html.

More on this subject:

Author: Irakly Komaxidze

Translated by Eugenia Zlamanuk

Edited by Max Alginin


291st artillery brigade’s “Tour of duty” from Crimea to Donbass

Currently some howitzer and rocket artillery units from 291st Brigade, 58th Army, Southern Military District (military unit 64670, stationed in Troitskaya, Ingushetia) are being observed again in Rostov region on the Ukrainian border (along Sea of Azov). Continue reading

Show Must Go On, or The Foreplay

According to our observations, as well as the information and the materials by the “InformNapalm” team, the Russian side is preparing large scale provocations in several directions. We observe the activity of Russian troops in the occupied Crimea near the administrative border with Kherson region, as well as in the vicinity of Novoazovsk. At the same time, Russian military has become more active in Rostov region (Russian Federation). In particular, sabotage and reconnaissance groups of the Main Intelligence Directorate (GRU) have been pulled up towards the border; we also observe paratroopers of the 331st Guards Airborne Regiment of the 98th Guards Airborne Division (Kostroma, Pskov) and other units. Continue reading

The unit of the 7th Tank Brigade, Central Military District, among the invading forces in Eastern Ukraine

In the course of identification of Russian invasion forces and weapons, we found evidence of the presence of a unit of the 7th Tank Brigade, Central Military District, military unit 89547 (city of Chebarkul, Chelyabinsk region).

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A unit from this brigade was previously observed in September. Troops were apparently rotated in October. At this time, a combined unit of T-72 tank crews (presumably, a company), artillery equipped with  2S3 “Akatsiya” (a battery), and motorised infantry (a company) belonging to the 7th Brigade is present in Kamensk district of Rostov region. Some of the personnel are contract soldiers that were given a refresher course for their specialties in the 473th district training centre in Elansk (Sverdlovsk region).

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Many have noted that my recent articles largely refer to units from the northern regions of Russia. The reason is clear: the winter is coming. Apparently, Russian military command has decided to replace the southerners with Siberians and Northerners, who are better adapted and equipped for winter conditions. Here is a list of military units from the northern regions of the Russian Federation deployed towards the Ukrainian border:

– 61st Marine Brigade of the Northern Fleet from Murmansk region.
– 74th Motorized Brigade of the Central Military District from Kemerov region.

Units recorded earlier:
– 138th  Motorized Brigade of  the Western Military District from Leningrad region;
– 385th Artillery Brigade of  the Central Military District from Orenburg region;
– 35th  Motorized Brigade of  the Central Military District from Altai Krai;
– 32nd  Motorized Brigade of  the Central Military District  from Novosibirsk region;
– 37th (presumably) Motorized Brigade of  the Central Military District from Buryat Republic;
– 200th Motorized Rifle Brigade of the Northern Fleet from Murmansk region.

As well as troops from brigades of Main Intelligence Directorate (GRU) of the General Staff of the Armed Forces:

— Airborne Intelligence Group, 24th Separate Spetsnaz Brigade from Novosibirsk region

— 14th Separate Spetsnaz Brigade from Khabarovsk region

Short note: the 7th Independent Tank Brigade was formed on the basis of the former 34-th Motorized Rifle Division. The Brigade includes three tank battalions, a motorized infantry battalion, reconnaisance company, anti-aircraft and surface-to-air missile battalions, a combat support battalion, a self-propelled howitzer battalion, a multiple launcher rocket system battalion, a maintenance battalion, a sapper-engineer company, and other support units (more information here : http://cossac-awards.narod.ru/Sovrem_chasti_files/7_kaz_tank_brigada.html)

Recommended reading: https://burkonews.info/new-siberian-guests-border-ukraine-14th-brigade-special-forces-main-intelligence-department/

Author: Irakli Komakhidze

Confirmation of the 439th Guards Rocket Artillery Brigade deployed as part of the Russian invasion forces

The presence of a detachment from the 439th Guards Rocket Artillery Brigade was first reported in September 2014. (See link below for a summary of Russian artillery units operating on the border or in Ukraine)  Now with new evidence, the presence of a BM-30 `Smerch’ equipped multiple rocket launcher system (MRLS) detachment from the 439th Guards Rocket Artillery Brigade of the Southern Defense Command (SDC) can be confirmed. The Brigades has its home base in the Astrakhan region. 4391 Continue reading

A Detachment of Self Propelled Artillery “Akatsiya” of the 138th Motorized Rifle Brigade Located on the Ukrainian Border

We have obtained evidence of the presence of another artillery detachment of the Russian Armed Forces on the Ukrainian border, this time from the 138 Motorized Rifle Brigade (MRB), Military Unit 02511, Western Military District. The Brigade’s place of permanent deployment is Kamenka, Vyborgsky District, Leningrad Oblast. 138-y-sau

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67th Air-Defense Missile Brigade from Russia has been in Ukraine.

In the course of the identification the Russian invasion forces and weapons, we found evidence of the presence of a new (not previously idenfied) air-defense missile unit. This unit is the 67th Air-Defense Missile Brigade (ADMB), Military Unit 32383 of the Russian Southern Defense Command (SMC). Soldiers with Ukr name-plate


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‘Truckers’ from ‘Rublevka’ — 147th Automotive Logistic Support Battalion

We had many discussions before about the transfer of Russian military equipment, including tanks, from different parts of the Russian Federation to Rostov region and then further to Donbas in Ukraine.

I was recently able to identify the automotive unit, which along with other logistic support units, was actively involved in the process of transferring weapons and equipment to Ukraine from June to September 2014. The 147th Automotive Logistic Support Battalion of the General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces (military unit 83466) which based at 68 Rublevskoe Shosse in Moscow.

Truckers 6 Continue reading

Russian T-90 Tanks of the 136th Motorized Rifle Brigade in Luhansk region

It is far from being a new subject, that of the Russian Federation military taking part in battles in Ukrainian Donbas. This has been reported in the Ukrainian media many times. But to all skeptics, both local and international, definite visual prove of these facts is always needed.

The presence of Russian tanks, particularly the newest “T-90”, has also been raised over the July-September period, but there was no trophy or photo-fact to prove it. Now we can know for sure that Russian T-90 tanks took part in battles near the Luhansk airport.

second photo

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“Tankman”: Russian Officer of the 17th Independent Motor-Rifle Brigade Who Participated in Armed Hostilities in Donbas

In the course of the identification of Russian units participating in the undeclared war against Ukraine, we identified a tank detachment and one of its officers within the 17th Guards Independent Motor-Rifle Brigade (military unit 23132) of the Southern Military District (garrisoned in Shali, Chechnya). Continue reading

2nd Separate Spetsnaz Brigade in Ukraine

In the course of the detection and identification of the units of the Russian invasion forces, we acquired additional confirmation that groups of the 2nd Separate Spetsnaz Brigade are present among the diversionary reconnaissance groups in the Eastern Ukraine.

The 2nd Spetsnaz Brigade is a special forces brigade of the Main Intelligence Directorate (GRU) of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation (military unit 64044) within the Western Military District. Continue reading