These stations measure things like continental drift, elevation etc. The 'military uses' comment is a red herring.
The International GNSS Service (IGS) is a voluntary federation of more than 200 worldwide agencies that pool resources and permanent GPS & GLONASS station data to generate precise GPS & GLONASS products. The IGS is committed to providing the highest quality data and products as the standard for Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) in support of Earth science research, multidisciplinary applications, and education.
Russia Turns off Data from IGS GPS Tracking Stations
As announced by Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin on May 13, 2014, GPS tracking stations co-sponsored by U.S. interests have stopped making their data available to scientists and others.
The tap on the flow of data from 11 stations was turned off starting on May 31. The data flow included hourly and daily data files from the stations as well as the real-time flow of data over the Internet.
In an item entitled “On Execution of the Instructions of the Government of the Russian Federation,” the website of Roscosmos, the Russian Space Agency, reported:
“In accordance with the instructions of the Government of the Russian Federation, the Russian Space Agency in conjunction with the Federal Agency scientific organizations on June 1, 2014, implemented measures to avoid the use of information from the global seismographic network stations operating on the signals of the GPS system and located in the Russian Federation, for purposes not covered by existing agreements, including military uses.” (As translated by Google Translate.)