mobilization briefs
May 2, 2023

Mobilization in Russia for Apr. 30 — May 1, 2023 CIT volunteer summary

Authorities and Legislation

The State Council of Tatarstan [Russia’s constituent republic] submitted a bill to the State Duma [lower house of the Federal Assembly of Russia], according to which graduates who pursued a state-funded higher education, will be obliged to work within their specialty in a place selected by the university for three years after graduation. Those who refuse to do so will have to reimburse the cost of education. According to the authors of the bill, this measure will help in "providing enterprises of the military-industrial complex and priority sectors of the economy" with a workforce. The relevant committee of the State Duma will issue an opinion on the bill by July 9, 2023.

Heads of police units in Saint Petersburg and the Leningrad region were sent a memo entitled "Experience of the NKVD [People's Commissariat for Internal Affairs] of the USSR in Combating Nationalistic Formations in the Western Regions of the Soviet Union and its Use in Carrying out the Special Military Operation." Law enforcement officials are advised to rely on the experience of Soviet security personnel during business trips to Ukraine. They were required to study the NKVD's work on 28 pages in April.

Conscription and Military Service Advertising

A letter from the administration of the Perm region governor to Aleksey Makhonin, the mayor of Perm, ended up in the mailout received by communal services workers, probably by mistake. In the letter, the administration addresses the mayor with a request to produce and distribute banners and booklets advertising contract military service throughout the city. It’s also suggested to post advertisements on social media.

Advertisements of the Wagner Group were found by residents of Volgograd in their mailboxes.

Mobilized Soldiers and Volunteer Fighters

The growing list of Russian mobilized soldiers killed in the war has been updated with Yevgeny Troshin from the Lipetsk region, Konstantin Urazumbetov from the Irkutsk region, and Artyom Koldaev from the Chelyabinsk region.

Relatives of mobilized soldiers from the Orenburg region recorded a video message to Vladimir Putin. The women report that their husbands and children, who were mobilized into the 1161st Motorized Rifle Regiment, became subordinate to the “132nd Army Corps of People's Militia of the so-called DPR”, the 101st Regiment [probably, referring to the 101st Regiment of the 132nd Motorized Rifle Brigade of the 1st Army Corps — CIT], whose commanders use the mobilized as "cannon fodders," sending them in unprepared attacks. In their appeal, relatives ask to transfer the soldiers back under the command of the officers of the military unit from Orenburg. Relatives refer to the statements of Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu and other government officials, who promised that mobilized soldiers would only be used as a territorial defense force, that is, to protect facilities on the occupied territories of Ukraine.

Also, relatives of soldiers from the Orenburg region who were killed or went missing complain that their petitions addressed to the Ministry of Defense asking to confirm the fate of those missing in action or to release the bodies of those killed do not bring results. The ministry, instead of providing assistance, just responds with “generic letters.” Meanwhile, even soldiers whose death has been confirmed remain listed as “missing in action.” Moreover, remains of the killed soldiers are not being evacuated from the battlefield even in cases when the territory is under the control of the pro-Russian forces. As a result, the bodies remain unburied for months.

Sentences, Legal Proceedings, and Incidents

During the evening of Apr. 29, Vyacheslav Mokin, a resident of the town of Ob, fired four shots at a group of men from a hunting rifle in the village of Tolmachevo following a “sudden altercation.” Two persons died on the spot from their wounds including Yevgeny Khotkov, an ex-convict Tolmachevo resident who had recently returned from the combat zone in Ukraine. Two more people are hospitalized for their wounds. The shooter has been detained by local police and has confessed. The reasons for the altercation are under investigation.

Governor of the Leningrad region Aleksandr Drozdenko reported on a power transmission line explosion in the Gatchina district. According to him, a pylon of the first power line of the Susaninsky settlement was blown up, and explosives were found near the second line. A criminal case has been opened under articles related to sabotage and illegal trafficking of explosive devices.

A freight train derailed in the Bryansk region. According to the Baza Telegram channel, the train consisted of 60 wagons carrying petroleum products and lumber. The region's governor, Aleksandr Bogomaz, reported that the train derailed due to the explosion of an "unidentified device"; no casualties were reported. Railway traffic on the Bryansk-Unecha railway section has been suspended. By 3:00 p.m., the governor stated that the fire had been localized, and traffic on the damaged section would be restored by the morning of May 2. Baza published an alleged sketch of the suspect.

A resident of the Leningrad region was sentenced to two years’ probation for an attempt to set fire to the office of the Krasnaya Zvezda [Red Star] newspaper. Shortly after the start of mobilization in Sept. 2022, 42-year-old Aleksey Bogdanov threw a Molotov cocktail at the building of the editorial office of the socio-political newspaper in the town of Priozersk, namesake of the newspaper of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation. The bottle did not reach the building. In January, Aleksey was given a one-year suspended sentence, charged with attempting to intentionally destroy or damage property. However, the prosecutor's office filed an appeal demanding that Bogdanov be sentenced to two years in prison. The court affirmed the suspended sentence, extending it by one year.


In Chita, Vladimir Kurbatov, an assistant to a member of the regional Legislative Assembly, shared the story at a May Day rally of a wife of a soldier, who is deployed to the war zone, turning to him for help. Her electricity was recently cut off because she does not have the money to pay the bill (her husband allegedly cannot send her what he has earned). Regardless of having three children and a husband at war, and despite promises, the authorities did not prioritize the woman's problems and left for the weekend. As a result, the family and children were left without electricity for several days.


The Penza Prosecutor's Office sued a school for not building a shooting range and not instructing children how to shoot. Employees of the secondary school in the village of Vadinsk, 160 km away from Penza, as noted on the website of the regional prosecutor's office, did not comply with legislation on the military and patriotic children's education. In particular, they did not build a sports area with an obstacle zone and a shooting range where children could be trained to shoot. Now the supervisory authority demands the constructions to be built in an enforcement procedure.

Victory Day

The Irkutsk Diocese has released the Russian Peace and War anthology. It is edited by Yevgeny Startsev, a priest who has been in the "special operation" zone several times, and is now collecting money for sights and UAVs for the Russian Armed Forces. The authors of the articles include Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and Aleksandr Dugin [Russian political philosopher, known for views widely characterized as fascist]. The anthology also includes Stalin's 1945 speech.

The Dovod [Argument] media outlet has received a copy of methodological materials on the celebration of Victory Day in 2023, which are sent by the Kremlin to Russia's regions. The recommendations indicate that during the festive events, emphasis should be placed on the continuity of the generations of "warriors-liberators." The authorities also demand to pay great attention to educational events in schools and meetings of schoolchildren with participants in the "special military operation." Moreover, it is advised that servicemen should not wear masks, "so that the children could see the faces of real heroes."

Besides, Dovod studied stands at public transport stops installed ahead of the Victory Day on May 9 in Vladimir. Recall that the stands depict both residents of Vladimir killed in World War II and those locals killed during a full-scale invasion of Ukraine. There are photographs of fifteen servicemen on the stands. These constitute less than half of city residents known to be killed in the war with Ukraine for certain. In total, there are 38 residents of Vladimir on the list of KIAs made by the media outlet.


The authorities refused municipal council member Olga Podolskaya to agree on a schedule of reception for residents of the town of Efremov, Tula region. The pretext was an incorrectly drafted application. Olga Podolskaya is a member of the Moskalyov family support group. She broadcast from the trials of Aleksey Moskalyov, went to the orphanage to get a meeting with his daughter Masha, and was going to file a police report about the disappearance of the schoolgirl.