Russia says it will deploy musicians to the front lines of its war in Ukraine in a bid to boost morale.
This was announced by the Russian defence ministry on 14 December, but media reports now suggest these brigades will include opera singers, actors and circus performers.
The MoD said this is likely due to "fragile morale" in Russian troops, which "almost certainly continues to be a significant vulnerability across much of the Russian force".
However, the ministry concluded the effort is "unlikely" to alleviate a number of concerns felt by those on the front lines.
Meanwhile, Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu visited frontline troops in Ukraine, the government said.