The Russian military placed an extremely long train (or several trains) on a railway line located not far from the front line in the occupied Donetsk region. Presumably, this is part of the defense line in the event of a breakthrough by Ukrainian troops. This is reported by the Ukrainian analytical project DeepState, the American Institute for the Study of War (ISW) also drew attention to the so-called “tsar-train”.
According to DeepState, which refers to satellite images, the train contains more than 2,100 railway cars, presumably seized on the territory of Ukraine after the Russian invasion. Its length is 30 kilometers – from the railway station in Elenovka to Volnovakha.
DeepState calls the “tsar-train” a “very specific engineering design”, the effectiveness of which is difficult to assess. Such a composition, of course, is not capable of moving a single locomotive from its place, so the “train” is most likely intended to serve as a barrier, since “it will damage, destroy or undermine a 30-kilometer-long mass of metal very hard.”
ISW also compared satellite images from May 2023 and February 2024 and came to the conclusion that the construction of the “tsar-train” lasted about 9 months.
Russian railway blogger Sergey Sygachev, who also analyzed the pictures, claims that it is not about one 30-kilometer-long train, but about three (also extremely long) trains, between which there are small gaps. “That is, not a 30-km continuous “snake”, but three snakes,” Sygachev notes.
At the same time, even during the summer counteroffensive, Ukrainian troops did not try to advance on this section of the front. Now the Russian military is trying to advance here in the Novomykhaylovka area.