Because of the costsof the Chechen war and of the government’s failure to fund thedefense budget, the Russian army has been forced to dip into itswinter food reserves and will soon be unable to feed the troops,Duma Defense Committee chairman Sergei Yushenkov told InterfaxJuly 17. In a related development, the defense ministry announcedthat it was now 865 billion rubles behind in its payments to servicemenand civilian staff. The head of the ministry’s budget department,Gen. Vladimir Osadchy, said that this figure would increase another800-900 billion in July and that the army’s failure to pay itspeople "may negatively affect the combat efficiency of thetroops, and may cause social tensions."
12 Million Russians Not Receiving Their Paychecks.