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Expedition Finds 150 WWII S-mines on Russia's Bolshoi Tyuters Island

© Sputnik / Radik Amirov / Go to the mediabankParticipants of the Gogland expedition on Bolshoy Tyuters Island, Leningrad Region
Participants of the Gogland expedition on Bolshoy Tyuters Island, Leningrad Region - Sputnik International
A total of 150 German World War II-era SMi-35 bouncing mines have been found so far on Russia’s Bolshoi Tyuters island in the Finnish Gulf, Ilya Sherbakov, the commander of the Russian military demining squad taking part in a Russian Geographical Society (RGS) expedition to the island, told Sputnik on Sunday.

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BOLSHOI TYUTERS (Sputnik), Alexander Mosesov — The expedition is the fourth one carried out by the RGS to the Gulf of Finland islands, and is sponsored by the Russian Defense Ministry and the Leningrad Region administration. Some 100 Russian servicemen and 20 units of military equipment are taking part in the expedition alongside volunteers and Rossiya Segodnya International Information Agency journalists.

"As for now, a total of 150 German 'frog mines' have been found by us on Bolshoi Tuyters," Sherbakov said.

Nazi Germany’s SMi-35 mine was designed to literally jump up from the ground to be more lethal and then explode immediately, killing anyone within a range of 27 yards.

Moreover, the expedition team found a total of 984 German shells used in Oerlikon 20 mm cannons.

"In general, 984 shells [for Oerlikon cannons] have been found," Sherbakov said.

Oerlikon cannons were widely used by Nazi forces during World War II in order to destroy both air and ground targets.

During the World War II, Bolshoi Tyuters island was occupied for three years by Nazi forces and detachments equipped with autocannons were stationed across the island.

An international Russian-German expedition has also been exploring the islands of Bolshoi Tyuters and Gogland, seeking to find the remains of fallen Soviet and German World War II soldiers, and exhume them before reburying on the mainland. The remains of over 120 German soldiers are estimated to be on the islands, according to the German War Graves Commission.

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