Russian troops arriving in Ukraine without training, weapons: U.K. military officials

Russia has deployed several thousand newly mobilized reservists to Ukraine, but some have arrived on the front line without weapons, British military intelligence officials said Monday.

In many cases, even those Russian troops who have brought weapons with them are poorly equipped. They are typically armed with AKM rifles, first developed in 1959. Many are in “barely usable” conditions following poor storage, according to a Twitter post from British military officials. 

Issuing AKMs to the newly arrived reservists also is causing logistics headaches for Russia’s military leaders in Ukraine. The AKM fires 7.62mm ammunition, but Russia’s regular combat units are mostly armed with AK-74M or AK-12 rifles that use 5.45mm ammo.

“The integration of reservists with contract soldiers and combat veterans in Ukraine will mean Russian logisticians will have to push two types of small arms ammunition to front line positions, rather than one,” British defense intelligence officials tweeted. “This will likely further complicate Russia’s already strained logistics systems.”

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