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Digital Archive International History Declassified

March 26, 1955

STATEMENT BY THE CENTRAL COMMITTEE OF THE COMMUNIST PARTY OF THE SOVIET UNION AND THE COUNCIL OF MINISTERS OF THE USSR ON THE TRANSFER OF THE 72ND ENGINEER BRIGADE TO EAST GERMANY

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    Transfer of Soviet troops and missiles to various Eastern European countries.
    "Statement by the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union and the Council of Ministers of the USSR on the Transfer of the 72nd Engineer Brigade to East Germany," March 26, 1955, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, Archive of the President of the Russian Federation (AP FR), Moscow, Register 93 (Documents with Decisions of the Council of Ministers of the USSR for the Year 1955) as printed in Pervoe raketnoe soedinenie vooruzennych sil strany: Voenno-istoriceskij ocerk (Moscow: CIPK, 1996), pp. 208-209. Translated from Russian for the CWIHP by Matthias Uhl https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/111614
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Top Secret
Return to Group Number 1 of the Special Division of the Administrative Section of the Council of Ministers of the Soviet Union within 24 hours required

Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union and Council of Ministers of the USSR

Decision of 26 March 1955
Top Secret
Moscow, The Kremlin

About Measures to Increase the Battle-Readiness of the Engineer Brigades of the Supreme Command Reserve Units.

With the goal of increasing the battle-readiness of the engineer brigades of the Supreme Command's Reserve Units, the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union and the Council of Ministers of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics have decided that:

The Defense Ministry of the Soviet Union (Comrade Zhukov) is assigned with carrying out the following measures:

1. From 1955 to 1956, four engineer brigades of the Supreme Command Reserve Units are to be transferred to areas that correspond with the plans for their battle deployment:

A. The 72nd RVGK [Rezerv Verchovnogo Glavnokomandovanija—Reserve of the High Command] Engineer Brigade is to be transferred to the territory of the GDR and is to be incorporated into the troops of the Soviet military forces in Germany;

B. The 73rd RVGK Engineer Brigade is to be transferred to the territory of the People's Republic of Bulgaria, and the Foreign Ministry of the USSR (Comrade Molotov) is to gain the agreement of the Bulgarian government to this stationing;[1]

C. The 90th RVGK Engineer Brigade is to be transferred to the territory of the Trans-Caucasian Military Zone;

D. The 85th RVGK Engineer Brigade is to be transferred to the Far Eastern Military Zone

2. The 72nd, 73rd, 85th, 90th and 233rd Engineer Brigades of the RVGK are to be brought up to full strength and are to be fully staffed, and armed with the necessary special weaponry and technology.

3. The 80th RVGK Engineer Brigade is to be transformed into a training unit for engineer brigades RVGK, and will be responsible for training the new non-commissioned officers and soldiers for all engineer brigades, as a substitute for those released to the reserves.

It is to be guaranteed that the training unit for RVGK engineer brigades can be transformed into battle-ready engineer brigades RVGK. In this instance, the specialists necessary for training the replacements coming from the reserves are to be left out of the transformation process. The training unit for RVGK engineer brigades is to be stationed on the territory of the Central State Artillery Range.[2]

4. The size of the Soviet Army is to be increased by 5,500 men in order to guarantee that the measures listed in points 2 and 3 are carried out.

5. In the period 1955-56, the Ministry of Defense of the USSR is allowed to use 30 R-1 and 18 R-2 missiles that have passed their maximum guaranteed storage life in the reserve of the Ministry of Defense to improve the battle training of the 7 engineer brigades.

The Secretary of the Central Committee
The Chairman of the of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, Council of Ministers of the USSR,

N. Khrushchev
N. Bulganin

[1] The Bulgarians may have refused to grant their permission, because there are no references to a stationing of the 73rd Engineer Brigade RVGK in Bulgaria.

[2] The Central State Artillery Grounds were established on 13 May 1946 and located in Kapustin Yar.