A Russian battalion is offering a bounty of more than Rp 2.5 billion for the seizure of any operational Leopard, Abrams or Challenger tanks that are sent to Ukraine. Photo/REUTERS
MOSCOW – A battalion Russia offered a reward for seizing Western-made operational tanks if they were deployed to Ukraine. Each tank that can still be operational gets a prize of 12 million rubles or more than IDR 2.5 billion.
The tanks being contested were the Leopard made in Germany, the Abrams made in the United States (US), and the Challenger made in England.
The announcement for the contest was made by the Pavel Sudoplatov Battalion, an international volunteer unit created in September 2022 in Zaporizhzhia, the territory that broke away from Ukraine and joined Russia in a referendum last year.
Also read: Kremlin Supports Contest to Seize NATO Tanks with Prizes of IDR 1 Billion
The battalion was named after a Soviet-era spy chief famous for his operations against Ukrainian nationalists.
The battalion wrote on Telegram: “Officially declared to pay 12 million rubles for each serviceable Leopard, Abrams or Challenger tank.”
The announcement, as quoted by Russia Today, Sunday (5/2/2023), is part of a trend whereby Russian business entities and officials have rewarded Western confiscation and destruction if deployed to Ukraine.
Late last month, Aleksandr Osipov, governor of the Zabaikalsky Region, eastern Russia, signed an order offering local soldiers fighting in Ukraine 3 million rubles for the seizure of an operational Leopard 2 tank, or 1 million rubles for destroying it.
The governor promised 1.5 million rubles for confiscation and 500,000 rubles for the destruction of the American M1 Abrams tank.
These and similar initiatives received the thumbs up from the Kremlin. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said it served as proof of the “unity and desire of all to contribute directly or indirectly” to the goals of Russia’s military operation in Ukraine.