49th Combined Arms Army

Russian Ground Forces formation
  • Ivan Zakharkin
  • Ivan Grishin
Military unit

The 49th Combined Arms Army (Russian: 49-я общевойсковая армия) is a combined arms (field) army (CAA) of the Russian Ground Forces, formed in 2010 and headquartered in Stavropol. Military Unit в/ч 35181.

Part of the Southern Military District, the army traces its heritage back to the Soviet Red Army's 49th Army, formed in 1941 after the German invasion of the Soviet Union in World War II. The 49th Army served through the entire war and was disbanded postwar in the summer of 1945.


Red Army

On 6 August 1941, a Stavka directive ordered the formation of the 49th Army. One day later the army was formed as part of the Reserve Front, based on the 35th Rifle Corps, commanded by Lieutenant General Ivan Zakharkin. The army initially comprised 194th Mountain Rifle Division, 220th, 248th, 298th Rifle Divisions, the 4th People's Militia Division, 396th Corps Artillery Regiment, and other units. By 17 August 1941 the army was deployed in the rear of the Western Front, concentrated in the Dorogobuzh area with the task of manning the reserve defensive line of the front. On 1 October, the army was transferred to the direct subordination of Stavka and renamed the "49th Reserve Army," but was moved back to the Reserve Front on 7 October.[1]

The Rzhev salient, between 1941 and 1942

On 12 October 1941, the 49th Army was placed on the Mozhaisk defense line in the Kaluga area, after giving up its sector to the 32nd Army. The Mozhaisk line was credited for slowing down the German approach toward Moscow.[2] A day later, the army was transferred to the Western Front and saw its first combat in the Mozhaisk-Maloyaroslavets Defensive Operation, which lasted until 30 October. In fierce fighting from 14 to 20 November, the 49th Army was able to weaken the advancing German XIII Army Corps, finally stopping it in early December on the line west of Serpukhov and Sukhodol, 20 kilometers southeast of Aleksin. During the Soviet counteroffensive at Moscow, the army fought in the Tula Offensive between 6 and 16 December, and the Kaluga Offensive between 17 December and 5 January 1942.[1]

On 8 January, the 49th Army began fighting in the Rzhev-Vyazma Strategic Offensive, which aimed to eliminate the heavily fortified Rzhev salient, which threatened Moscow. On 5 March, troops of the army recaptured Yukhnov, and by 20 April reached the Ugra and the Ressa Rivers, both west of Yukhnov. The 49th Army held the same positions until March 1943. Between 2 and 31 March 1943, the army fought in the Rzhev–Vyazma Offensive, which attempted to stop Operation Büffel, the German phased withdrawal from the Rzhev salient. In June, Lieutenant General Ivan Grishin, who would command the army until the end of the war, took command.[1]

From 7 August to 2 October, the 49th Army participated in the Smolensk Operation, advancing towards Spas-Demensk, Stodolishche, and Khislavichi in its first phase, the Spas-Demensk Offensive. Operating in conjunction with the 33rd Army, the army recaptured Spas-Demensk on 13 August. Overcoming fierce German resistance, the army reached the line of Tsirkovschina and Zimtsy. Resuming the attack in the Yelnia-Dorogobuzh Offensive on 28 August, the army advanced through the forests south of Yelnya and crossed the Desna River and the Sozh River. On 28 September the army recaptured Mstsislaw, and in early October reached the Pronya River in the Drybin Raion, 35 kilometers north of Chavusy, where it went on the defensive.[1]

49th Army troops during the liberation of Mogilev, 28 June 1944

From 24 April 1944 to the end of the war, the 49th Army was subordinated to the 2nd Belorussian Front. From late June, the army fought in Operation Bagration, the Soviet strategic offensive in Belorussia and eastern Poland. During the Mogilev Offensive from 23 to 28 June, the 49th broke through German lines, crossed the Basya River, the Rasta River, and the Dnieper before storming Mogilev alongside the 50th Army on 28 June. Subsequently, the army fought in the Minsk Offensive between 29 June and 4 July. At the beginning of the second half of July, the army was regrouped southwest of Navahrudak. During the Belostock Offensive between 5 and 27 July, the 49th Army helped break stubborn German resistance between Grodno and Svislach. On 24 July, the army captured Sokółka, and by the end of 27 July reached the area north and west of the city. During August and early September the army fought in the Lublin–Brest Offensive, and by 15 September reached the Narew in the Łomża area, where it transitioned to defense.[1]

From 13 January to 25 April 1945, the 49th Army fought in the East Prussian Offensive. Between 10 February and 4 April, it participated in the East Pomeranian Offensive. The army captured Czersk on 21 February and Berent on 8 March. The army continued its advance towards Danzig, which was taken on 30 March alongside the 2nd Shock Army, the 65th Army, and the 70th Army. The army's last operation was the Berlin Offensive, from 16 April to 8 May, during which it advanced in the main shock group of the front. At the end of the war, the 49th Army reached the Elbe in the Ludwigslust area, where it met troops of the British Second Army. It ended the war as part of the 2nd Belorussian Front, with the 42nd Rifle Division being among its units.[3] The army became part of the Group of Soviet Occupation Forces in Germany when it was formed on 9 June, with headquarters at Wittenburg.[4] Between July and August 1945, the army was relocated to Gorky Oblast and disbanded there in August. Its headquarters was used to form the headquarters of the Gorky Military District.[1]

Russian Ground Forces

In 1990, there were three army corps in the North Caucasus Military District. Among them was the 12th Army Corps at Krasnodar, commanding the 9th Motor Rifle Division. 12th Army Corps had been formed by redesignation of 12th Rifle Corps in 1957.[5] In May 1992, the 12th Army Corps became the 49th Army.[6][7] 49th Army was then later redesignated 67th Army Corps on 1 October 1994.[5]

After the 2008 Russian military reforms, 49CAA was formed in 2010 as part of the Southern Military District, headquartered at Stavropol.[8] Its headquarters was established in the former Stavropol Institute of Communications of the Strategic Rocket Forces.[9] Major General Sergey Kuralenko was appointed commander by a decree of January 9, 2011, with Major General Viktor Astapov as first deputy commander.[10]

According to warfare.ru, 49CAA (listed at Stavropol/Maikop) had under control in late 2011 the 4th Guards and 7th Military Bases (South Ossetia and Abkhazia) and the 8th (former Taman Guards Motor Rifle Division), 33rd and 34th separate Mountain Motor Rifle Brigades (Borzoi, Chechnya, Maikop, and Storozhevaya-2), as well as the 66th Communications Brigade.[11] In May 2012, Army deputy commander Viktor Astapov became the commander of the 49th Army.[12] On 30 December 2013, Army deputy commander Major General Sergey Sevryukov became commander of the 49th Army.[13]

As of 2015[update], milkavkaz identified the following as part of the army:[14]

In 2023 49 CAA was identified with:[16]

Involvement in 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine

According to Forbes, the 49CAA was (as of 29 July 2022) "the main Russian force in southern Ukraine’s Kherson Oblast" and numbers as many as 10,000 troops.[17]

It was claimed on 25 March 2022 by Oleksiy Arestovych that Ukrainian forces liquidated the commander of the 49CAA, Yakov Rezantsev, in action during the 2022 Chornobaivka attacks of the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine.[18][19] Ukraine however, in February 2023, list him as alive in the war criminals database.

As of June 2023 Colonel Sergey Vasilyevich Leonov was acting army commander.[20]


World War II

During World War II, the 49th Army was commanded by the following officers:[1]

  • Lieutenant General Ivan Zakharkin (August 1941 – June 1943)
  • Lieutenant General (promoted to Colonel General March 1945) Ivan Grishin (June 1943 – June 1945)

21st Century

Since 2010, the 49CAA has had the following commanders:

  • Major General Sergey Kuralenko (January 2011 – May 2012)[10]
  • Major General Viktor Astapov (May 2012 – December 2013)[12]
  • Major General Sergey Sevryukov (December 2013 – July 2019)[13]
  • Major General Mikhail Zusko (July 2019 – August 2020)[21]
  • Lieutenant General Yakov Rezantsev (August 2020 – unknown)



  1. ^ a b c d e f g "49-я АРМИЯ" [49th Army]. bdsa.ru (in Russian). Retrieved 11 April 2017.
  2. ^ The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970–1979).
  3. ^ Robert G. Poirier and Albert Z. Conner, The Red Army Order of Battle in the Great Patriotic War, Novato: Presidio Press, 1985. ISBN 0-89141-237-9.
  4. ^ Feskov et al 2013, p. 380.
  5. ^ a b Holm, Michael. "12th Army Corps". ww2.dk. Retrieved 11 April 2017.
  6. ^ Feskov et al 2013, p. 522.
  7. ^ Andrew Duncan, 'Russian Forces in Decline – Part 4', Jane's Intelligence Review, December 1996
  8. ^ "49-я общевойсковая армия" [49th Combined Arms Army] (in Russian). Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation. Archived from the original on 9 August 2017. Retrieved 11 April 2017.
  9. ^ Ilyinov, Igor (20 October 2010). "Штаб армии вместо вуза" [Army headquarters replaces university]. Stavropolskaya Pravda (in Russian). Retrieved 25 September 2018.
  10. ^ a b "Кадровые изменения в Вооружённых Силах" [Armed Forces Personnel changes]. kremlin.ru (in Russian). President of Russia. 9 January 2011.
  11. ^ "Southern Military District - OSC South". warfare.ru. Archived from the original on 27 September 2011. Retrieved 9 September 2011.
  12. ^ a b "Назначен новый командующий 49 общевойсковой армией Южного военного округа" [New commander of the 49th Army appointed in the Southern Military District]. Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation (in Russian). 21 May 2012. Retrieved 11 April 2017.
  13. ^ a b Ilyinov, Igor (9 January 2014). "Сергей Севрюков принял штандарт командующего 49-й общевойсковой армией" [Sergey Sevryukov accepts flag of the commander of the 49th Army]. Stavropol Pravda (in Russian). Archived from the original on 25 February 2016. Retrieved 25 February 2016.
  14. ^ "Южный военный округ — ЮВО". Milkavkaz (in Russian). 23 December 2015. Archived from the original on 2017-04-19. Retrieved 2017-06-25.
  15. ^ "Russian Military Forces: Interactive Map".
  17. ^ Axe, David (29 July 2022). "In Southern Ukraine, Kyiv's Artillery Drops Bridges And Isolates A Whole Russian Army". Forbes.
  18. ^ "Sodan nopeaa päätöstä luvanneen kenraalin sanotaan kuolleen" (in Finnish). Verkkouutiset. 25 March 2022.
  19. ^ "Ukrainian troops killed commander of Russia's 49th Combined Arms Army - Arestovych". Ukrinform. 25 March 2022.
  20. ^ "В добрый путь: торжественный выпуск кадет состоялся в Ставропольском ПКУ". www.stpku.ru. Retrieved 2023-07-14.
  21. ^ "В 49-й общевойсковой армии ЮВО состоялась церемония вручения штандарта новому командующему объединением" (in Russian). Ministry of Defence. 22 July 2019. Retrieved 21 January 2020.


  • Feskov, V.I.; Golikov, V.I.; Kalashnikov, K.A.; Slugin, S.A. (2013). Вооруженные силы СССР после Второй Мировой войны: от Красной Армии к Советской [The Armed Forces of the USSR after World War II: From the Red Army to the Soviet: Part 1 Land Forces] (in Russian). Tomsk: Scientific and Technical Literature Publishing. ISBN 9785895035306.

Further reading

  • Bykov, Mikhail; Anokhin, Vladimir (2014). Все истребительные авиаполки Сталина. Первая полная энциклопедия [All Fighter Aviation Regiments of Stalin. The First Complete Encyclopedia] (in Russian). Yauza. ISBN 9785457567276.
  • Mikheyenkov, Sergey (2011). Серпухов. Последний рубеж. 49-я армия в битве за Москву. 1941 [Serpukhov: The Last Defensive Line: 49th Army in the Battle for Moscow]. Забытые армии. Забытые командармы [Forgotten Armies, Forgotten Commanders] (in Russian). Moscow: Tsentrpoligraf. ISBN 978-5-227-02912-6.
  • Mikheyenkov, Sergey (2012). Кровавый плацдарм. 49-я армия в прорыве под Тарусой и боях на реке Угре. 1941–1942 [Bloody Bridgehead: 49th Army in the breakthrough south of Tarusa and battles on the Ugra River]. Забытые армии. Забытые командармы [Forgotten Armies, Forgotten Commanders] (in Russian). Moscow: Tsentrpoligraf. ISBN 978-5-227-03659-9.
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