Military recruiters from Moscow are now approaching mobilized soldiers, who are already serving in the army, and proposing a switch to contract-based military service instead. It appears that Moscow authorities are thus trying to fill the volunteer recruitment quota assigned to them from the federal level.
The Vladimir branch of Rokot-Center, a private security company that offers military training, announced the suspension of its courses for now, because "its instructors are leaving for the special military operation for professional development and to carry out a number of specific tasks." It has also launched a fundraising campaign to provision them with ammunition and food.
A recruitment point was set up during the unveiling of a monument to Dostoevsky in the Optina Pustyn Eastern Orthodox monastery. Meanwhile, the "meat-packing plant" bus station in Ulyanovsk now displays an advertisement for contract-based military service. And in Vladimir, the mayor’s office demanded that the banner of a local newspaper be replaced with one for contract-based military service, even though the rent for the billboard had been paid until the end of the month.
The following names have been added to the list of draftees killed in the war: Sergey Chepik from the Arkhangelsk region, Aleksandr Pronin from Saint Petersburg, Aleksandr Ovcharenko from the Omsk region, Aleksandr Klimin from the Orenburg region, Roman Smirnov from the Magadan region, Aleksey Kazantsev and Evgeniy Vasiliev from the Russia’s constituent Republic of Buryatia, Aleksandr Streltsov from the Voronezh region, Nikolay Rakov from the Kaliningrad region, Ilus Karimov from Russia’s constituent Republic of Tatarstan, Denis Bogdanov from the Novgorod region and Maksim Malkov from the Tomsk region. Aleksey Smirnov from the Novosibirsk region died after returning home from the front, as a result of his injuries.
Yaroslavl residents have reported that the military cemetery’s sector, where killed war participants were buried, is full. Arkhangelsk authorities want to facelift the area of the local cemetery that is used for similar purposes. In particular, they plan to install 69 new gravestones and CCTV cameras. Up to 6 million rubles [$65,760] will be spent for the works. Meanwhile, the Government of the Vladimir region has granted 300,000 rubles [$3288] to the town of Sobinka for the manufacture and installation of a memorial to those killed in the war with Ukraine.
A send-off ceremony was held for the mobilized in Ufa going back to war after a two-week vacation. While on vacation, the servicemen participated in "courage lessons," met youths and children. Meanwhile, all vacations have been canceled by a special order for the mobilized from the Saratov region fighting within the 1199th Regiment.
Mobilized Vladimir Sukharev from Chelyabinsk is complaining that he has not been getting any salary for six months already after he was wounded. Also, he did not get the veteran ID card and the promised medals.
The Storm-Z unit fighters who recorded two video appeals (more details) refusing to continue fighting as they had not been paid salaries for three months, have been sent back to the frontline. A relative of one of the servicemen has told the Astra Telegram channel that armed people came for them on Ural trucks, beat up two fighters, and then forced everyone to get into the trucks. Later, one of the fighters got in touch and said that they were being sent to the frontline with no uniforms or arms.
The mobilized soldiers from the 60th Brigade spent several days in a pit for refusing to go to the front (details). This was an order from the army's assistant commander for political affairs. Later, these soldiers were transported away in an unknown direction. The relatives informed the Astra Telegram channel that, currently, there is no communication with the soldiers. On Jul. 6, a meeting was held between the wives of the mobilized and the unit's command, during which the women's phones were taken away. When the conversation turned to the pits, the commanders declared that "such a thing could not have happened."
The mobilized soldiers from the Altai region recorded a video address declaring their refusal to participate in combat until they were provided with artillery support. According to the soldiers, on Jun. 24, they were forced to retreat from their positions due to the lack of artillery support. The command gave them three days off, after which they promised soldiers to transfer them to the third line of defense. Instead, the soldiers are being sent to the frontlines. The soldiers also complain about poor supplies and delays in evacuating the wounded, leading to many dying or losing limbs.
The mobilized soldiers from the Primorsky region are complaining about their commanders' actions. According to a serviceman, his unit did not undergo proper training. The soldiers are unwilling to engage in battle under the leadership of their current commanders, citing a lack of trust as the reason. Previously, the soldiers' wives had recorded an address expressing their complaints about the commanders.
The head of the village of Nizhny Kuranakh in Yakutia [Russia’s constituent republic] threatened the wives of servicemen with punishment for an "unsanctioned rally" when they came to him asking to ensure the rights of their mobilized husbands from the 83rd Air Assault Brigade. The soldiers had earlier recorded complaints about the command (details). Following this, the women arranged a meeting with State Duma [lower house of the Federal Assembly of Russia] member Sardana Avksentyeva. After the meeting, Avksentyeva wrote appeals to Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu and Human Rights Ombudsman Tatyana Moskalkova, asking for information about vacations and the rotation procedure. Avksentyeva also requested a review of the unit's command staff to ensure the rights of servicemen are being upheld. She also submitted a request to the military prosecutor's office asking them to halt any potential legal violations against servicemen. Additionally, relatives of the mobilized soldiers from the 83rd Air Assault Brigade met with State Duma member Fyodor Tumusov. The outcome of the meeting was a decision to "escalate the demands to the federal level," calling for the implementation of rotation and the semi-annual vacations, as promised by President Putin.
A family from Saint Petersburg is pleading for their mobilized member to be granted leave. Despite suffering from asthma, the man was conscripted when he went to collect his passport. Currently, his regiment is engaged in combat operations in the Bakhmut area.
Mothers of drafted full-time students from the Donetsk People's Republic (DPR) and the Luhansk People's Republic (LPR) have appealed to President Putin, requesting the return of their children from the war. Their sons were called up in February 2022, and in May of the same year, they were deceitfully coerced into signing short-term contracts. Despite the expiration of their service terms, the students are not being released from the combat zone.
Unknown individuals set fire to relay cabinets on the railway in the Ulyanovsk region. The fire was discovered in the evening of Jul. 7. Three relay cabinets were destroyed, and another one was found open. A criminal case has been initiated regarding intentional destruction of someone else's property.
On the night of Jul. 8, unidentified saboteurs set fire to two relay cabinets and one battery cabinet near Balakirevo railway station in the Vladimir region. As a result of the arson, the equipment was completely destroyed. Meanwhile, police did not confirm the suspected arson attack on a relay cabinet in the Kirov region: apparently it burned out after being struck by lightning.
In Mari El [Russia’s constituent republic], an unidentified individual set fire to a relay cabinet at Pemba railway station, which caused a delay of a passenger train. Police are on the hunt for the arsonist.
On Jul. 7, two teenage boys, 17 and 14, reportedly set fire to a relay cabinet in the Ulyanovsk region. Although the arson did not lead to train delays, the assailants were detained the next day. They admitted they have been promised 15,000 rubles [$160] for causing a fire. Now they face up to five years in prison.
A military court ordered a seven-year penal colony sentence and a fine of 40,000 rubles [$440] for a draftee from Lipetsk who brought a few grenades back with him from the war and blew them up in his residential neighborhood.
A combat grenade without a fuse was revealed at the Rostov bus terminal in the passenger compartment of a bus prior to its scheduled departure for Luhansk.
In Belgorod, unidentified men in military uniform with Wagner Group patches robbed a magic shop. According to the shop assistants, the servicemen first attempted to extort money claiming that a debt was owed to them by the previous tenant. Police admitted to have received reports from other shops these two soldiers had attempted to rob.
Maksim Gadzhiumarov, a father of many children from Dagestan [Russia’s constituent republic], was unable to contest his mobilization despite the fact that he is raising three children and his wife is pregnant with their fourth child. His request was initially rejected by the Garrison Military Court in Makhachkala and later by the Southern District Military Court in Rostov-on-Don. The court concluded that since the pregnancy was less than 22 weeks at the time of the draft, there were no grounds to cancel the mobilization. The directive from the General Staff for deferring draft for fathers of three children was not considered a valid argument by the court as it was "not a legislation act."
A court in Lysva, Perm region, sided with a resident of the town seeking a deferment from mobilization and ordered the draft board to reconsider the decision of his mobilization because the man has three children under the age of 16. The court's decision has not yet become effective.
In Moscow, former military psychologist Timofey Rudenko, who condemned the Russian invasion of Ukraine, was once again detained. Over the past year, he has faced seven consecutive arrests.
In Buryatia, the Sodeystvie [Contribution] non-commercial organization purchased and sent three types of anti-drone rifles to the front using funds from the regional budget. Sawn timber, drinking water, and different types of equipment were sent to the "special military operation" zone from Bashkortostan [Russia’s constituent republic]. A craftsman from Bashkortostan has developed special stoves that can be used for cooking food and heating spaces, and has sent over 100 of these stoves to the front. The Borodino Battle Museum in the Moscow region donated medications, construction tools, and food. In the Astrakhan region, activists made the first batch of insect repellents for soldiers.
Mobilized servicemen of the 1430th Regiment complain that assistance from the deputies does not reach the front. Earlier, a post was published on the VKontakte social network telling about sending aid to the mobilized soldiers from "deputies, senators, as well as the United Russia party [Putin’s ruling party]." The servicemen assume that the assistance does not go beyond filming a video for reporting.
Summing up the 500 days of the war, the OVD-Info Independent human rights project reported that Russian citizens have been detained for expressing an anti-war position about 20,000 times. The persecution affected children, the elderly and even clergy. Anti-war activist Anatoly Berezikov died in a special detention center. More than 7,000 cases have been initiated under the article on "discrediting the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation," and 620 people have been prosecuted for their anti-war position.
Izhevskie Termy [The Izhevsk Thermae], the only hot baths complex in Udmurtia was expelled from the Italmas shopping and entertainment center without compensation in order to build a UAV production plant on the site. Since February, social activists had been trying to defend the hot baths complex but ended up with failure.
Employees of the Ministry of Internal Affairs demanded that a resident of Vladimir register with the military when receiving an international passport. However, after applying to the Committee of Military Lawyers [local team of lawyers providing legal advice in connection with the draft], he was still able to receive the passport, since refusal to issue the document on this basis is illegal.
The Sibir.Realii [part of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty] online media outlet told a story of the village of Yashkino in the Kemerovo region, where the confectionery factory of the same name is located. Many residents explain their decision to go to the army on a contract basis with a desire to lift the family from poverty.