The combat capability of the Russian armed forces is "increasing day by day" and Russia will certainly step up this process, President Vladimir Putin said. "Today, our goal is to implement the entire scope of necessary measures to achieve a qualitative renewal and improvement of the armed forces," Putin added on Wednesday at an expanded meeting of the Russian Defence Ministry Board.
He ordered the military to maintain and improve the combat readiness of the nuclear triad, which is "the main guarantee that our sovereignty and territorial integrity, strategic parity and the general balance of forces in the world are preserved".
The level of modern armaments in Russia's strategic nuclear forces has exceeded 91 per cent and "we will carry out all of our plans" to equip the strategic forces with the latest weapon systems, he said.
Putin also stressed the importance of increasing the numbers of fighters and bombers operating in the zone covered by modern air defence systems, and called it "a pressing task" to upgrade drones, Xinhua news agency reported.
While delivering a report at the meeting, Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu proposed to increase the number of the Russian armed forces to 1.5 million servicemen, including 695,000 contract soldiers.