More VDV to Kyrgyzstan

Escalating violence in southern Kyzgyzstan has prompted Moscow to dispatch more VDV to protect Russian servicemen and their dependents, according to Kremlin and Defense Ministry representatives.

ITAR-TASS reports President Medvedev’s press secretary indicated Medvedev decided to send extra sub-units to reinforce the contingent already located there.  The Defense Ministry said a reduced strength battalion of the VDV’s Ulyanovsk-based 31st Independent Airborne-Assault Brigade arrived in Kyrgyzstan today. 

It will reinforce the security and defense of Russian military facilities there.  Its arrival is also connected with the rotation of other 31st Brigade sub-units out of the country.

ITAR-TASS sources in Russia’s power structures say two reinforced companies numbering more than 300 men have been sent into Kyrgyzstan.  The current contingent of Russians numbered about 160.

The introduction of additional Russian troops comes on the heels of weekend violence in Jalal-Abad, where crowds broke into military units and stole weapons.

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