mobilization briefs
February 3, 2023

Mobilization in Russia for Feb. 1–2, 2023 CIT volunteer summary

State Duma [lower house of the Federal Assembly of Russia] members introduced a bill that would give commanders of military units and military police units the authority to execute non-judicial disciplinary arrests during times of mobilization, martial law, or wartime. Servicemen undergo a disciplinary arrest for serious disciplinary offenses, and the arrest manifests itself in the isolation of a serviceman in a guardroom. Evasion of military duties, intoxication on duty, and other actions are among the offenses that warrant a disciplinary arrest. The Voyenniy Ombudsmen [Military Ombudsman] Telegram channel notes that the implementation of such a law would violate the Constitution of the Russian Federation and would make access to legal aid more difficult. The non-judicial arrest is possible in one case only - during a state of emergency.

It is worth recalling that the Russian military widely practices illegal detentions of servicemen. For example, the Astra Telegram channel already identified 14 locations in the so-called LPR [Luhansk People’s Republic] and DNR [Donetsk People’s Republic], where servicemen who refused to participate in combat were illegally detained.

Russia’s Ministry of Defense has started developing a psychological rehabilitation program for senior officers participating in the war. According to the plan, senior officers who participate in combat in Ukraine will be regularly undergoing a weeklong PTSD therapy every one to two months in the rear of the frontline.

Moscow and Perm residents are reported to get draft notices via mail. They contain requirements to appear for data check-ups and receive mobilization orders.

Governor of Primorsky region Oleg Kozhemyako, in an interview with Podyom [Rise] media outlet, said that he would personally deal with the hygiene of the mobilized. “We sent [an appeal] to the military prosecutor's office. So, the details are being investigated, " —told the governor. He also denied the information about the removal of "objectionable" comments in his social networks, "This is complete nonsense. We never delete comments if they are not aimed at discrediting something: the Russian Army or some else…”. In the sitrep the day before yesterday, we reported complaints on lice and scabies, which wives and mothers of mobilized soldiers had sent straight to Putin. Along the way, Kozhemyako banned residents of the Primorsky region from using drones because of the “special operation” in Ukraine. The authorities fear sabotage in the territory of the region. Recall that Vladivostok is more than 9000 km from the border with Ukraine.

Bonus money for wrecked tanks might begin to be collected from the residents of Zabaykalsky region, declared Governor of the region Aleksandr Osipov, “Let's see what will happen — whether there will be those payments, what their amount will be. I think that there will definitely be funds for the first payments in the regional budget. However, if it suddenly turns out that they burn too many tanks, in this case, we will see how to join forces [with the residents]. I think all the residents of the Zabaykalsky region will be ready to help, and the business will help as well.” Formerly, Osipov promised payments of up to three million rubles to those who captured Abrams and Leopard tanks.

A UAZ offroad van (a compact van of Russian production commonly known as “Bukhanka” [loaf of bread]) was donated to the mobilized residents of Kislovodsk by the city council. The money to buy the vehicle had been collected by the whole city and the mayor handed the van over to the servicemen personally. Governor of the Belgorod region Vyacheslav Gladkov announced that seven UAZ Pickup vehicles (mid-size body-on-frame SUVs produced in Russia) had been handed over to the commanders of territorial defense battalions. The K-9 dog breeding kennel of the city of Irkutsk donated two armored Volkswagen vehicles to support the mobilized fellow citizens. Both vehicles were loaded with essential supplies for the troops collected by local residents: winter clothing, a power generator, trench candles, and groceries.

Member of the regional parliament of Yugra [the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous region, Russia’s constituent entity] Mikhail Selyukov announced that mobilized soldiers from the Yugra battalion needed thermal cameras, night vision equipment, good sniper rifles, and drones. Meanwhile, wives of contract soldiers from Yugra argue that they have not been given the money the government promised to their husbands. Some of them have not been paid anything at all since November, while others received less than 10,000 rubles a month instead of the promised 200,000.

Mobilized men from Chuvashia [Russia’s constituent republic] reveal that “humanitarian aid” sent to them is being stolen. A large part of essential supplies sent by their families gets “lost” while being transported: power tools, potbelly stoves, rifle scopes, thermal cameras and even personal parcels. However, many of these things turn up later at the local market. The mobilized even have to buy drinking water at their own expense. At the same time, head of the republic Oleg Nikolaev publicly takes all credit for sending aid to the “special military operation” zone, understating contributions from other organizations and forcing public employees to donate a proportion of their salary to his foundation named “Pörle”.

Draftees keep being killed in the combat zone. Almaz Shafikov, 28, a draftee from Bashkiria [Russia’s constituent republic] was killed in the war in Ukraine. In Tyumen, the draftee Vladimir Gonenko, killed on Dec. 28, was buried. The Ministry of Defense confirmed that six draftees from Vologda were killed. They were part of a reconnaissance group of the 347th Regiment and were killed while on a mission. Among the dead are: Andrey Golubev, Viktor Kotov, Grigoriy Fomichev, Mikhail Borozdin, and Aleksandr Shishebarov. Three more names have emerged of those killed in the strike on Makiivka: Aleksandr Sukharev, Nikita Solonin, and Vitaliy Bekeev. That makes 101 known killed in the Makiivka tragedy.

Authorities in Moscow are looking for a draftee who ran away from the combat zone. Denis M., 34, was drafted in the fall. In January, he was in the Belgorod region as a member of an artillery brigade. The soldier had disappeared already on Jan. 22, but his commanders did not report him missing until a week later. The search for the draftee is underway in Moscow under the assumption that he could be hiding within the city.

The VChK-OGPU Telegram channel reports that an unknown person stole 92 equipment components from a military unit stationed near the town of Podolsk in the Moscow region as well as rendered inoperable a piece of communication equipment operating “in the interest of the Ministry of Defense of Russia.”

Soldiers from Chechnya [Russia’s constituent republic] attempted to take a lot of weapons from the front. A bus with 45 soldiers from the Ahmat-South unit was traveling from the occupied part of the Zaporizhzhia region. On the way to the Stavropol region, the police stopped the vehicle. During the inspection, they seized over 600 bullets and 22 grenades. The case was handed over to the military investigation department of the Investigative Committee of Russia.

The "Mobilization" Telegram channel obtained photos of the propaganda posters placed in the barracks of the 12721 military unit (488th Motorized Rifle Unit) in the town of Klincy in the Bryansk region.

On Sakhalin and in Khakassia [Russia’s constituent republic], soldiers left their duty station voluntarily for a long time. One of them fled again after being found by the police, but then both voluntarily showed up in the military police office and received suspended sentences as a result.

The Vyorstka media outlet published a story from a military health resort worker. She describes the condition of soldiers arriving for rehabilitation from the front, the difficulties they face, and why tragic incidents began to occur with their arrival at the institution. "Soldiers often behave quite cheekily, especially when they are drunk. They may give inappropriate compliments. Sometimes they just throw money in the face," the article says.

The Fundamentals of Military Training will be taught at Vladimir State University. Note that at the end of December, the Ministry of Education and Science informed that a course on the fundamentals of military training should be taught in all Russian universities. This is connected with the war in Ukraine.

The government of the Zabaykalsky region reported that local schoolchildren make "protective amulets against evil and negativity" for the soldiers. “All enemies and ill-wishers will retreat before the magical charms of the magical talisman,” the Za zhizn 75 V [Pro Life 75 V] movement said in its statement, quoted by the government. In Chita, as in many other cities and towns of Russia, secondary school students are involved in making trench candles. In Novosibirsk, in local chats, residents are encouraged to join in weaving camouflage nets and making trench candles. Meanwhile, the Ministry of Education of the Primorsky region sends out instructions on attracting students from technical schools to write letters to the front for the Defender of the Fatherland Day on Feb. 23.

In the Moscow region, the families of mobilized soldiers were given 10 kg of potatoes and carrots each. “I love my husband and wait for him. I hope that everything will be fine and Russia will win!” says a female resident of the town of Dmitrov (whose face was hidden).

According to the press service of Goznak state-owned company, the Russian Foreign Ministry suspended the issuance of biometric foreign passports valid for 10 years, which we reported in our previous summaries, allegedly due to increased demand and a shortage of required chips. At the same time, the Kremlin does not consider it to be a problem. “Keep it simple; use ordinary passports,” Russian President’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov said, answering the question.