NewsVladimir Putin establishes new military districts in response to Sweden and Finland joining NATO

Vladimir Putin establishes new military districts in response to Sweden and Finland joining NATO

Putin's special decree. Russia is creating new military districts.
Putin's special decree. Russia is creating new military districts.
1:26 PM EST, February 26, 2024

A quick reminder: the Hungarian parliament ratified Sweden's NATO membership agreement on Monday. Hungary was the final alliance country to approve Sweden's membership, a moment Sweden had anticipated for 20 months.

In the interim, the Russian president has signed a decree to establish two new military districts—Moscow and Leningrad, as announced by the Kremlin's news agency RIA Novosti this Monday.

The newly-formed Leningrad Military District comprises St. Petersburg, Karelia, the Komi Republic, the Arkhangelsk Region, the Kaliningrad Region, the Leningrad Region, the Vologda Region, Murmansk Region, Novgorod Region, and Pskov Region, in conjunction with the Nenets Autonomous District. The Northern Fleet, with its previously independent status, has also been incorporated.

Concurrently, the Moscow district encompasses Moscow and the administrative regions of Belgorod, Bryansk, Vladimir, Voronezh, Ivanovo, Kaluga, Kostroma, Kursk, Lipetsk, Moscow, Nizhny Novgorod, Orel, Ryazan, Smolensk, Tambov, Tver, Tula, and Yaroslavl.

Moreover, the Russian leader has resolved to modify the Southern Military District, incorporating the self-proclaimed republics Donetsk and Lugansk and Ukrainian regions Zaporizhzhia and Kherson. Before this change, the Southern Military District included the Caucasus, Crimea, and Sevastopol.

Putin's latest decree: Russia's reaction to Finland and Sweden joining NATO

In 2010, the Leningrad and Moscow Military Districts were merged into the Western District. However, in December 2022, Moscow's Minister of Defence, Sergei Shoigu, announced that in response to NATO's perceived "expansion" along Russia's frontiers, the Leningrad and Moscow Military Districts "should be reactivated."

"Taking into consideration NATO's efforts to augment its military potential near Russia's borders, alongside its expansion to include Finland and Sweden, a strategic deployment of troops in north-western Russia is necessary," he justified at the time.

Source: RIA Novosti

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