The Presidential Executive Order posthumously conferred the title of Hero of the Russian Federation on First Sergeant Almaz Safin for bravery and heroism displayed in the line of duty.
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From September 30, 2022, Almaz Safin, a ground scout/operator with a ground scout platoon of a reconnaissance company of the 237th Air Assault Regiment of the 76th Guards Air Assault Division, was involved in the special military operation in Ukraine.
On January 14, 2023, units of the 237th Air Assault Regiment were conducting defensive operations in the Krasny Liman operational sector. At that time, the enemy deployed all available reserves near Kremennaya and launched an active offensive in order to breach defensive positions of Russian paratroopers, exploit tactical success, cut off Russian logistics support routes and seize Kremennaya.
Regiment’s reconnaissance and ground scout units pinpointed the routes used by reserve enemy forces and the main axis of advance. The regiment commander decided to regroup his units and to reinforce defensive positions for repelling an impending enemy attack.
A paratrooper platoon, commanded by First Sergeant Almaz Safin and operating at battalion level, was holding defensive positions along the possible main axis of the enemy advance. First Sergeant Almaz Safin quickly deployed observers, organised the ground and ordered his subordinates to build fortifications. He set specific objectives to his subordinates and organised the defence of the platoon’s positions.
While observing the terrain using reconnaissance systems, First Sergeant Almaz Safin spotted reserve enemy units approaching the platoon’s positions and ordered his subordinates to open fire. He reported the situation to the company commander and thus pre-empted enemy operations and an attempted surprise attack. This allowed defending units to take up their positions on time. During the engagement, he personally killed five Ukrainian soldiers. Following an abortive surprise attack, enemy mortars started methodically shelling the platoon’s positions. First Sergeant Almaz Safin was severely wounded by a mortar shell fragment during the artillery attack, but he did not abandon his position and continued to manage his subordinates and to conduct aimed fire at the enemy.
The enemy repeatedly tried to dislodge the paratroopers from their positions but failed after encountering fierce resistance and sustaining heavy casualties. Reinforcements from the regiment’s 3rd Assault Combat Battalion subsequently arrived and forced the enemy to retreat to its initial positions.
During their valiant operations, Russian paratroopers, commanded by First Sergeant Almaz Safin, destroyed one tank, two armoured vehicles and killed up to 50 Ukrainian service personnel. First Sergeant Almaz Safin died of his wounds after the battle, having fully accomplished his combat mission.
The heroic and resolute actions of First Sergeant Almaz Safin, combined with high professionalism and skilful troops control, made it possible to prevent a breakthrough by well-trained and well-equipped units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine that outnumbered the Russian forces. Ukrainian units sustained heavy casualties.