MOSCOW, August 6 (Itar-Tass) —— Russia’s Railway Troops are marking the 160th jubilee on Saturday, August 6.
Their history goes back to August 6, 1851, when Tsar Nicholas the First signed a decree establishing the St. Petersburg-Moscow Railway. Under the decree, fourteen brigades, two guard and one ‘telegraph’ companies were set up to ensure security of the new railway service.
“As of now, the country’s Railway Troops number 24,500 men, including 1,870 officers and 3,332 contract sergeants. The troops employ 2,500 of civilian personnel,” Major General Oleg Kosenkov, the commander of the Railway Troops, told the Ekho Moskvy radio station.
The Railway Troops were integrated into the Russian Defence Ministry in 2005 and are tasked to ensure safety of the country’s railway network and to build new roads in order to secure combat readiness of the Russian armed forces. Servicemen of the Railway Troops take part in clean-up operations at railways after natural calamities, and also are involved in international missions under Russia’s agreements with foreign countries.