“Railway troops are building a 122.5 km double-track electrified line along the Southeastern and North Caucasus Railway,” Deputy Defense Minister Dmitry Bulgakov told RIA Novosti news agency.
Currently, several short stretches of rail lines linking Moscow to southern Russia cut through Ukrainian territory several times in Russia's Voronezh and Rostov regions.
Russian Railways CEO Vladimir Yakunin announced the plans to build a new railway in the south bypassing Ukraine on January 22, 2015.
"We increased the number of trains during the holiday season and this year will be no exception. We are now working to improve the speed of delivery of our passengers," he said.
Earlier, transport Minister Maxim Sokolov said the railroad bypassing Ukraine would be built regardless of the relations between the two countries.
"There are four (Russia-Ukraine) border crossing points. A project to avoid these points will be implemented promptly," Sokolov was quoted by RIA Novosti news agency as saying.
According to him, the construction of the 56.6 billion ruble line between Belgorod and Rostov regions along the Prokhorovka — Zhuravka — Chertkovo — Bataisk route would take about three years and be completed in 2018.