NATO's Russian Military Buildup Photos Were Taken Last Year, Official Says

Apr. 11 2014 — 11:10

NATO's Russian Military Buildup Photos Were Taken Last Year, Official Says

Apr. 11 2014 — 11:10
A satellite image shows Russian Su-27/30 Flankers and Su-24 Fencers at a military base in Buturlinovka, southern Russia.

An official in the Russian military general staff has said that NATO satellite photographs purporting to show Russian forces concentrated near the Ukrainian border were taken in August 2013, a news report has said.

The report came hours after NATO on Thursday unveiled photographs it said showed Russian deployments of some 40,000 troops, along with tanks, armored vehicles, artillery and aircraft. It said the pictures were taken between March 22 and April 2.

"These photographs that were distributed by NATO depict units of Russian forces of the Southern Military District which conducted various exercises last summer, some of them near the border with Ukraine," the official said, RIA Novosti reported.

President Vladimir Putin secured permission for his parliament last month to send Russian armed forces into Ukraine to protect compatriots there if necessary, prompting Western concerns that Russia could invade the east after annexing the Black Sea peninsula of Crimea from Ukraine last month.

Moscow seized Crimea after Ukraine's pro-Russian president was toppled by protesters seeking closer ties with Europe.

Russia's Southern Military District includes territory bordering southeastern Ukraine. Russia last month announced military exercises in the Southern Military District and areas bordering Ukraine further north, and has dismissed U.S. and European concerns about the troop numbers.

Russia Wins Gold at Rio Olympics
The flame for the 2016 Summer Olympics was extinguished in Brazil's Rio de Janeiro on Sunday, symbolizing the end of the Games. Russia finished fourth ...
Hang in There: With No Money to Index Pensions, Russian Leaders Look to Make One-Time Payment
The government will issue pensioners with one-time payment instead of indexing pensions for a second time this year, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has ...
Hang in There: With No Money to Index Pensions, Russian Leaders Look to Make One-Time Payment
The government will issue pensioners with one-time payment instead of ...
Prepare to be Dazzled at VDNKh's Festival of Music and Light
If you're on the hunt for a midweek pick-me-up look no further than the festival of music and ...