mobilization briefs
July 15, 2023

Mobilization in Russia for Jul. 13-14, 2023 CIT Volunteer Summary

Authorities and Legislation

The State Duma [lower house of the Federal Assembly of Russia] has passed amendments to the Federal Law "On Military Duty and Military Service" in the second reading, according to which age limits for reservists will be increased to 65 years for senior officers, 60 years for junior officers, and 55 years for other ranks. On average, the maximum age is raised by five years.

A decree signed by Vladimir Putin provides that builders of fortifications on the Russian border will be paid 3 million rubles [$33,240] if they are injured in an attack or explosion, and their families will be paid 5 million rubles [$55,400] if a worker gets killed.

According to Deputy Chairman of the State Duma Pyotr Tolstoy, the law prohibiting gender transition, passed on Jul. 14 in the third reading, will not be retroactively applied, so children adopted by transgender people will not be removed from their homes.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs clarified that although according to a draft decree on the procedure for notifying about obtaining a permanent residence or a foreign citizenship, Russian citizens who have received such documents can inform Russian embassies about these facts within 60 days, there is no liability for non-compliance with this requirement. According to the ministry, this initiative is proposed to simplify the procedure and is a right, not an obligation. The Faridaily Telegram channel prepared a detailed review of the draft decree.

The Federal Tax Service denied the information about the suspension of the automatic transfer of mobilized soldiers' data to bailiffs to allow for payment holidays.

Mobilized Soldiers and Volunteer Fighters

The list of mobilized soldiers killed in the war has been updated with Yevgeny Otto from the Omsk region, Eduard Yashkin from the Sverdlovsk region and Aleksandr Roditelev from the Russian-annexed Crimea.

The Vot Tak [Like This] Telegram channel, citing its source, reported that a conscript fatally shot himself at a training range of the 103rd Motorized Rifle Regiment near Rostov-on-Don. No details of the incident have been disclosed.

Mediazona [independent Russian media outlet] studied the data on the website of the Federal Register of Disabled Persons and discovered that, since the beginning of the full-scale invasion of Ukraine, more than 5,000 Russians have been granted the status of a combat-disabled veteran. Since the process of registering a disability takes months, the available data doesn't reflect the actual number of severely wounded on the frontline in real time. Meanwhile, the number of citizens with military-related disabilities continues to grow at a record pace. 279 new names were added to the register in May, and 322 more in June.

The Astra Telegram channel has reported about another mobilized soldier who was sent to an illegal "basement" in Perevalsk, Luhansk region, for requesting his entitled leave. Astra has previously reported a similar case. This time, Aleksandr Ignatov from the 291st Regiment, attached to the 57th Brigade, ended up in the basement. He was mobilized in the fall of 2022 and has not been granted leave since then. Ignatov also mentioned that the command treats him and other soldiers "like dogs."

Wives of mobilized soldiers from Samara reported that on the night of Jul. 10, soldiers from the 1443rd Regiment, who were stationed in the occupied Pryvillia in the Luhansk region, were unexpectedly redeployed to the Bakhmut area. As the convoy approached the town, it was hit by a rocket strike. Those who survived were sent back to the battlefield, resulting in more than half of the unit being killed or injured. They refused to return to the combat zone again. The command is pressuring the refuseniks, threatening them with criminal prosecution or execution by firing squad.

In the 1307th Regiment, whose soldiers had previously complained about the commander's cruel treatment, Deputy Minister of Defense Viktor Goremykin arrived after Natalya Komarova, Governor of the Khanty-Mansi autonomous region—Yugra [Russia's federal subject] intervened. It is reported that Goremykin made several personnel decisions on the spot, although the details are unknown. Previous inspections conducted in the regiment had no impact on the situation.

Sentences, Legal Proceedings, and Incidents

The Tomsk Garrison Military Court has sentenced two servicemen for going AWOL: Private Sergey Pozdnyakov received a five-and-a-half-year suspended sentence, while Lance Corporal Igor Andriyanov received a six-year suspended sentence. Both individuals reported themselves to the military authorities several months after going AWOL, and they have been placed on probation for a period of three years.

The Novocherkassk Garrison Military Court has sentenced a mobilized soldier to five years of imprisonment for going AWOL. Sergeant Aleksey T. failed to return from medical leave and was apprehended by military police five weeks later, but only partially admitted his guilt.

In Novocherkassk, a court has sentenced three servicemen to suspended sentences for torturing six subordinates in order to extract confessions of drug use from them. In their quest for the desired testimonies, they repeatedly beat subordinates and tortured them with electricity. The court took into account the awards received by the detainees and their participation in combat activities when delivering the verdict.

For the first time in Russia, compensation for wrongful persecution for evading mobilization was awarded by the court. A resident of the city of Penza Maksim Moiseyev refused to acknowledge the receipt of a draft notice with his signature, which led to his being arrested by riot police and booked into a temporary detention center for two days. A few days later the prosecutor's office declared the decision to initiate proceedings wrongful and recognized Moiseyev's right to rehabilitation. Eventually, the court awarded him compensation of 20,000 rubles [$220] for wrongful criminal prosecution, which seems small when compared to 300,000 rubles [$3,320] he had claimed. Moiseyev will be appealing the court’s decision.

According to the Astra Telegram channel, two relay cabinets burned down on the Kirov-Chukhlominsky stretch in the Kirov region on Jul. 13. 19-year-old Dmitry Yevtekhov and 26-year-old Yevgeny Shipichkin, both having previous convictions for stealing and car theft, were detained on suspicion of arson. Investigators claim that the arsonists were promised 15,000 rubles [$170] for each destroyed relay cabinet. Following that, on the night of Jul. 14, unidentified individuals poured a flammable liquid into a relay cabinet to set fire to it on the Obukhovo-Slavyanka stretch in Saint Petersburg, causing a delay of three trains.

A resident of Saint Petersburg was placed into a pre-trial detention center on charges of sabotage for setting fire to a relay cabinet. Investigators allege that on May 4 the man, together with his friend, committed an arson on the Novaya Derevnya-Lakhta stretch in exchange for 8,000 rubles [$90].

The First Eastern District Military Court has extended the detention of Ruslan Zinin, who shot the Military Commissar of Ust-Ilimsk, to Jan. 9, 2024. His case is before a panel of three judges from Khabarovsk. Zinin takes part in the hearings by video link from his detention center.

A court in Russia’s constituent Republic of Khakassia has started reviewing the case of attempted treason against a social activist from Abakan, who was born in Odesa, Ukraine. According to the Federal Security Service (FSB), he tried to go to Ukraine via Kazakhstan to join the AFU, and now he is facing up to 13 years in jail. The indictment is based on his phone talks with his friends, in which he said he wanted to come back to his motherland. Having arrested him at the airport, the FSB put a bag on his head and took him to a forest, where they intimidated and tortured him, demanding to confess the crime.

A treason case has been initiated in the Vladimir region against a man arrested in May 2023 when trying to cross the Russian border in the Bryansk region, for attempting to join the "Freedom of Russia Legion." On this charge, he is facing up to 20 years in jail. As calculated by the Sota media outlet as of the end of April 2023, at least 25 people had been arrested for an attempt to join the "Freedom of Russia Legion."

The Leninsky District Court in Novosibirsk has ruled that 18-year-old Victor Skorobogatov and Kirill Veselov shall stay in the detention center till at least Oct. 13. The young men are charged with railway sabotage and Skorobogatov is also charged with an arson attack on a preserved Sukhoi Su-24 bomber.


Schoolchildren and activists from the pro-government movement in Tomsk have prepared pillows, underwear, and Cheburashka [a character in the Soviet children's literature] toys with embroidered Z letters to be sent to hospitals in the frontline zone.

The Vladimir branch of the Rokot-Center, a private security company that offers military training for participants of the invasion in Ukraine, conducted a specialized course for military personnel at the invitation of an army unit.

The wife of the Governor of the Chelyabinsk region invited residents to a "Picnic for Our Own," where they will be introduced to soldiers who have fought in Ukraine. There, they will weave camouflage nets, pack dry soups, and make dry showers.


A checklist that provides guidance in case of a bomb threat, arson, or drone attack came out on campus in Saint Petersburg. Meanwhile, Kuban Cossacks have begun training schoolchildren to use UAVs.


The Novaya Vkladka [New Tab] media outlet has told about the daily life of women whose husbands have gone to war. In many cases, the relatively high salaries of servicemen only cover their own expenses, leaving their families struggling.

The Insider [independent Russian investigative media outlet] has published interviews with sex workers, in which they talked about how their work has changed during the war, what new dangers have emerged in the market for sex services in the past year and a half, and what they think about the war and Russian soldiers who returned from the war.

The Russian authorities are trying to find candidates for elections in the occupied territories of Ukraine. Due to high risks, there are not many people willing to participate in them, even despite high salaries. Among the participants in the party primaries are collaborators persecuted by Ukrainian authorities, their relatives and former unemployed people.

Due to the mobilization, the number of marriages in Saint Petersburg in 2022 reached a five-year high, peaking in the fall of 2022. The number of "excessive" marriages is estimated at 19%.

With the start of the full-scale invasion in Ukraine, the number of political prisoners has increased significantly, currently exceeding 600. At the same time, only 10 regions of the Russian Federation have no political prisoners.

The Sever.Realii [part of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty] online media outlet talked to mobilized soldier Daniil Bystrov’s mother Olesya Bystrova from Saint Petersburg. In early June, Olesya was informed that her son had been killed in Ukraine. The body was brought to a Rostov-on-Don morgue, but two weeks later it turned out that they tried to send Olesya the body of another serviceman instead of her son. The woman said that she was still looking for her missing son.