Multiple launch rocket systems (MLRS) ‘Smerch’ crews of the Western Military District conducted combat operations in the military operation zone, footage published by Russia’s Defence Ministry on Friday showed.
The date and location were not specified; A video posted on Friday showed servicemen preparing a ‘Smerch’ launcher for combat.
“The Smerch MLRS divisions are tasked with destroying particularly important enemy military infrastructure in a distance of dozens of kilometers away. Rocket artillery crews are constantly on duty along the front line,” the ministry stated.
Moscow launched a military offensive in Ukraine in late February after recognising the independence of the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics (DPR and LPR), claiming that Kiev had failed to guarantee their special status under the 2014 Minsk Agreements.
Russian troops were sent in, allegedly to defend citizens from attacks by Kiev, as well as to ‘demilitarise’ and ‘denazify’ the region. Moscow also urged Ukraine to declare itself officially neutral and guarantee that it would never join NATO.
Kiev denounced the action as an invasion, denying allegations of tolerating Nazi organisations. President Volodymyr Zelensky imposed martial law, announcing a general mobilisation, while the EU and US imposed several rounds of sanctions on Moscow.