"Yet somehow, these modifications of Russian MBT types made their way to the occupied territory of the Donbas. And the transfer of the hardware is carried out through non-controlled portions of the border of Ukraine with the Russian Federation in the areas of the Luhansk and Donetsk regions," the article reads.
Through open source intelligence, the authors of the investigation identified and confirmed the presence of a number of Russian MBT modifications in the occupied territories, which modifications could not have been captured from the Ukrainian army as they are not in service with the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
T-72B, MBT 1989
Modernized version of the T-72 equipped with new armament and fire control systems, Kontakt-5 explosive reactive armor (ERA), 9K120 Svir laser-guided antitank guided missile system (ATGM), B-84 engine, 1A40 fire control system and 2A46M smoothbore gun.
Never supplied to Ukraine, it has been identified in Luhansk, Debaltseve and Makiivka in numerous InformNapalm investigations. The 5th Armored Brigade of the Eastern Military District of Russia was identified as its operator.
investigation #1 investigation #2
T-72BA MBT 1999 model
A modernized modification of the T-72B, modernization is performed at the Uralvagonzavod factory within an overhaul. First tanks were delivered in 1999-2000. The modification included upgrading of 1A40-1 fire control system (initially to 1A40-1M, and as of 2005, to 1A40-M2), installation of a new 2E42-4 Jasmine gun stabilizer, enhanced anti-landmine bottom protection with an additional armor-plate under the driver seat, replacement of the chassis and the engine (initially, with B-84MS engine, as of 2003 - with B-92S2), and installation of Kontakt-5 ERA. The modified vehicle is set apart from the regular B model through treads, ERA and a distinctive wind sensor on the turret. Never supplied to Ukraine.
The destruction of Russian tanks of this modification was recorded near Starobesheve (the Donetsk region).Their operator was identified as the 21-th Motorized Rifle Brigade of the Russian Army.
T-72B3 MBT 2011 model
The upgraded version of the T-72. Supplied to the Russian Army since 2012. The tank is fitted with the latest fire control system, Kontakt-5 ERA, B-84-1 engine with 840 hp rated power, Sosna-U thermal imaging scope, a wind sensor, enhanced communication equipment, an advanced gun stabilizer and a protection system from weapons of mass destruction. It also received improved automatic gun loader for new munitions, and enhanced chassis with parallel hinge track chains. Never supplied to Ukraine.
It has been identified in Luhansk, Ilovaisk and Debaltseve in numerous InformNapalm investigations. An MBT of this modification was destroyed in the area Debaltseve. In service with 6th Armored Brigade of the Russian Armed Forces.
investigation #1 investigation #2
T-90A, MBT 2006 model
Modification of the T-90. It was fitted with up-to-date second-generation ESSA thermal imaging scope, stabilized in two planes and integrated with the main scope and its range-finding channel. This enhanced the night vision range from 1,800 to 4,000 m. Never supplied to Ukraine.
Identified by InformNapalm in the Luhansk region. In service with the 136th Motorized Rifle Brigade of the Russian Armed Forces.
T-72S1, MBT model
The export version of the T-72B1 was supplied by Russia to Iran and Venezuela in 2011-2012. The main external difference from the T-72B is the TPN-3-49 night sight and the DVE-BS wind sensor. It was introduced in the Russian army in 1993, after the cancellation of a number of export sales. Never supplied to Ukraine. Identified by InformNapalm at a factory in Bile village (the Luhansk region) not far from the M04 motorway, 3 km west of Zbirna railway station.
While testing new types of weaponry in the Donbas, the military and political leadership of the Russian Federation is also flooding the occupied territory of Ukraine with the legacy Soviet-style weapons, such as:
- T-64 MBT;
- T-72B MBT, 1989 model;
- BM-21 Grad multiple rocket launcher;
- 2S1 Gvozdika 122mm self-propelled howitzer;
- Strela-10 anti-aircraft missile system;
- BMP-1 and BMP-2 infantry fighting vehicles;
- MT-LB light multi-purpose armored towing vehicle;
- D-30 122 mm towed howitzer;
- 2A65 Msta-B 152 mm howitzer;
- MT-12 Rapira 100mm anti-tank gun.
For more evidence deliveries of Russian weapons to the Donbas see the InformNapalm report presented at the PACE fall session.
"Thus, another unfounded claim leaves Dmitry Peskov, the press secretary of the Russian president, with some egg on the face once again. Chasing some positive press trying to deny the obvious Russian invasion of Ukraine, he only embarrasses his bosses. For his every word, we have specific facts and evidence. And it all will be used not only in the media, but also in the international war crime tribunal," Ukrainian investigating volunteers wrote.