Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Key Russian generals resign

Russian Chief of Staff Army General Nikolai Makarov

Source: Press TV

Several senior Russian army generals have reportedly submitted their resignations to protest against military reforms implemented by the country's General Staff head.

The generals have not yet publically announced their reasons for resigning, but one senior officer said their departures were tied to their disagreement with Chief of Staff Army General Nikolai Makarov's advances towards military reforms, RIA Novosti reported.

According to the report, Chief of Main Directorate of Operations Lt. Gen. Andrei Tretyak, Chief of the Main Staff of Land Forces Lt. Gen. Sergei Skokov and Chief of General Staff's Radio-electronic Warfare Directorate Maj. Gen Oleg Ivanov are among those who have submitted their resignations.

The resignations have not yet been confirmed by the Russian defense ministry.

The Russian officer denied media reports that Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov is playing a role in the recent resignations, arguing that the minister had been "an effective manager" and supplied troops with new equipment.

Instead, the officer accused Makarov of bringing about a situation in which the Russian military is indefinitely running into a state of “temporary experimentation.”

The Russian government plans to rearm troops with up-to-date weaponry and cut the number of service personnel to 1 million, increasing the number of professional soldiers instead as part of efforts to transform the military into a modern fighting force, RIA Novosti reported.

On July 1, Serdyukov announced that Russia's current 180,000 contract soldiers would increase to 425,000 professional troops by 2017.

As a result of such reforms in the Russian army, President Dmitry Medvedev has expelled several generals in the past month.

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