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Military intelligence: Russia plans to produce 2.7 million shells this year

by Dinara Khalilova and The Kyiv Independent news desk February 26, 2024 1:52 PM 3 min read
Deputy Head Of Chief Of Defence Intelligence Of Ukraine Vadym Skibitskyi gives an interview with Ukrainian news media on Jan. 8, 2024 in Kyiv, Ukraine. (Vitalii Nosach/Global Images Ukraine via Getty Images)
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Russia plans to produce 2.7 million shells in 2024, an increase from around 2 million 122 and 152 mm shells manufactured by the country last year, Vadym Skibitskyi, the deputy head of Ukraine's military intelligence agency (HUR), told Interfax Ukraine.

Russia has a significant advantage in the number of ammunition on Ukraine's front lines, firing around three times more shells per day than Ukrainian forces, according to a document prepared by Defense Minister Rustem Umerov and seen by Bloomberg.

Kyiv is being confronted with critical shortages of ammunition, as $61 billion in funding from the U.S. remains stuck in Congress, causing defense aid deliveries to run dry. Reports suggest Ukraine could face a catastrophic deficit of ammunition and air defenses within weeks.

Russia's goal to produce 2.7 million shells "requires, first of all, modernization of production, putting back (inactive facilities) in operation or creation of new lines (of production)," Skibitskyi said in an interview with Interfax Ukraine the HUR shared on Feb. 26.

"That is why we are asking our partners that the sanctions should be aimed at machines, at components for electronic chips, microcircuits, and so on."

‘Our reserves will run out:’ Ukrainian artillery sounds alarm on Western shell shortage
Hiding beneath sparse winter cover in a crude, muddy ditch, a great steel monster lies in wait for an opportunity to attack. Adorned on either side with painted plus signs, the gun’s huge barrel looks up at the sky over the Bakhmut front line, across which thousands

As well as producing new ammunition, Russia refurbishes Soviet stocks of artillery ammunition, bringing the amount available to "3-4 million units in 2023," Estonia's Foreign Intelligence Service said in a report published on Feb. 13.

Russia is simultaneously "preparing for a prolonged conflict with Ukraine, necessitating additional armies and army corps" while planning to reorganize its troops on the border with NATO countries, according to the Estonian intelligence agency.

Russia is also receiving new supplies of ammunition from abroad, with North Korea reportedly becoming Russia's largest arms supplier.

Russia has so far received 1.5 million 122 mm and 152 mm shells from North Korea, Skibitskyi said. "These shells are 70-80 years old, and half of them do not work," he added.

Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said in an interview with RedaktionsNetzwerk Deutschland (RND) published on Feb. 26 that Europe should suspend ammunition exports to third countries other than Ukraine in light of the shortages faced by the Ukrainian military.

The EU aims to deliver over 1 million shells to Ukraine by the end of 2024.

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“Words, words, just words,” sighed one VIP attendee at the Munich Security Conference as representatives of three European Union member states discussed security cooperation. “China will get the message: ‘No need to worry about us here,’” said another about the signals being sent from Bavar…


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