The authorities of Belgorod have made plans to purchase 400 firearms to be distributed among members of the regional defense forces, totaling nearly 3,000 individuals. This announcement was made by Oleg Mantulin, the security advisor to the governor, during a meeting on July 10.
The Belgorod authorities intend to establish an organization with a firearms license to address the issue of armament. According to Oleg Mantulin, the security advisor to the governor, these weapons are necessary for the "execution of special tasks." Suitable storage facilities for firearms have already been identified.
Mantulin revealed that the Belgorod self-defense structure consists of eight battalions with 2,900 personnel. However, the authorities have plans to expand them. A total of 400 million rubles ($4,404,000) has been allocated to equip the regional defense forces.
The Belgorod regional defense forces are primarily involved in maintaining public order, protecting settlements from "unlawful encroachments," monitoring critical facilities, and controlling the border.
In late 2022, the Belgorod authorities invested 10 billion rubles ($110,117,000) in constructing a defense line on the border with Ukraine. However, this defensive measure failed to prevent the Freedom of Russia* legion and the Russian Volunteer Corps from carrying out sabotage operations in the region. During one of their raids, a member of the regional defense forces named Yuri Gayevoy was killed. Governor Vyacheslav Gladkov confirmed that his death resulted from a direct gunshot wound to the head.
The "Freedom of Russia" legion is recognized as a terrorist organization in Russia.