Rail guerrillas in Russia bomb railway section to Belarus

The sabotaged piece of rail between Novozybkov and Zlinka.Tim White / @TWMCLtd / Twitter

A railway section near Novozybkov, close to the Russian borders with Belarus and Ukraine, was damaged by an explosive device this week. The attack was claimed by Russian anti-war movement Stop The Wagons on Telegram and was later confirmed the governor of Russia’s Belgorod region, the UK Ministry of Defence wrote on Twitter on Wednesday.

The damaged tracks are part of an important line connecting Bryansk, in Russia, with Gomel, in Belarus. According to the UK Ministry of Defence, about 15 kilometres of tracks was damaged. “The results of this small explosive sabotage will have to be fixed with a complete reinstallation of the tracks. And that’s great,” Stop The Wagons said on Telegram. According to the Brits, this is their sixth attack on Russian rail infrastructure since June. As a result, the Ministry of Defence writes, Moskou has been clamping down on the group’s online presence.

The Stop The Wagons movement specialises in strategic attacks on the Russian rail infrastructure to prevent the transport of equipment, fuel, ammunition  and other war supplies. The movement has taken responsibility for various incidents so far, including the one in the Amur Oblast on the Trans-Siberian Railway in June.

“The Russia military primarily relies on rail transport for deploying forces to Ukraine, but with a network extending to over 33,000km, largely transiting isolated areas, the system is extremely challenging to secure against physical threats”, the Brits conclude.

Rail sabotage has been a key feature of the conflict, particularly in the first two months following the invasion.

This piece was first published on RailFreight.com.

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Author: Marco Raimondi and Nick Augusteijn

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