The Strategic Rocket Forces will change its structure in the next few years. General Nikolai Solovtsov, the commander of the Rocket Forces announced today that by 2016 his service will liquidate one of the three armies and three of its twelve missile divisions (not four, as it was reported earlier).

Although Solovtsov did not say it, the missile army that will be liquidated is probably the 33rd Missile Army with headquarters in Omsk - this move was planned a long time ago. The three missile divisions that will be liquidated are most likely one of the six divisions with Topol/SS-25 missiles. My estimate is that in 2015 the Rocket Forces will still have about 60-70 missiles of this kind - enough to keep three divisions in service.

According to Solovtsov, in addition to the armies and their divisions, the Rocket Forces now have the following support units: the 4th State Central Interservice Test Range [in Kapustin Yar], the 4th Central Scientific Research Institute of the Ministry of Defense, the 43th Separate Scientific Testing Station [the Kura test range], three arsenals [Surovatikha, Khrizolitovyy, Piban'shur]. It also includes a military academy, three military institutes, and four training centers. By January 2016 the Rocket Forces will lose one of the three arsenals, the academy, and one training center.

UPDATE 12/01/08: In an interview to Interfax General Solovtsov said that four of the nine divisions the Rocket Forces will keep in 2016 will include silo-based missiles and five - mobile missiles. This means that none of the four divisions with silo-based missiles - Tatishchevo, Kozelsk, Uzhur, and Dombarovsky - will be disbanded.

UPDATE 12/05/08: Apparently, after some protests from the military, the minister of defense promised that the Rocket Forces will keep the Peter the Great Academy, although it would probably have to move from its current location to somewhere else in Mocsow.

UPDATE 12/12/08: According to Russian media reports, the Omsk army will not be liquidated. If this is the case, it is the Orenburg Army that will be disbanded.