mobilization briefs
March 12, 2023

Mobilization in Russia for Mar. 10–11, 2023, CIT volunteer summary  

No additional measures are currently being taken under the “partial” mobilization campaign, and none are planned, the Russian Defence Ministry's press service announced. "The number of inquiries from members of the public concerned about a potential repetition of the partial mobilization call-up campaign has risen, prompted by misleading information published on opposition Telegram channels. It was explained to each citizen who contacted the hotline that no additional measures are planned under the partial mobilization, and none are currently being carried out."

A task force for “special military operation” related issues in cooperation with the Bank of Russia and the Ministry of Defense is looking into the possibility of terminating loan obligations inherited by parents or adoptive parents of service members deceased while on active duty, the press service of the ruling United Russia party announced on Thursday, Mar. 9.

Mobilized men are being killed in combat every day. Among them are Nikolay Ilyin from the Vladimir region, Nikita Sokolov from the Yaroslavl region, Yevgeny Dresvyankin, Aleksey Gundin and Sergey Karmanov from the Orenburg region, as well as Aleksey Kistanov and Aleksandr Shapovalov from the Saratov region.

Since the beginning of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, the Mediazona independent media outlet, BBC News Russian, and a team of volunteers have verified the deaths of 16,774 Russian servicemen, including 1,456 mobilized men. Over the last week, 703 names, 90 of which were mobilized soldiers, have been added to the list of casualties.

The Ministry of Defense released a video showing how combat missions are being carried out by mortar crews of the Western Military District consisting of mobilized personnel.

Mobilized soldiers from the Moscow region recorded a video message to President Putin. According to the men, they were trained in Serpukhov for three months as part of the 580th Howitzer Artillery Battalion and then sent to Donetsk Dec. 27. On Mar. 1, their leadership informed them that they will now serve under the command of the 114th Brigade of the 1st Army Corps (the former "People's Militia of the DPR") in assault squads. The men in the video claim that almost immediately fifteen of their colleagues were sent to carry out combat missions. Also, according to the men, the military unit in Boguchar has guns and shells but the commanders refuse to hand them over to the military, citing the missing orders from the General Staff. Mothers and wives of the mobilized soldiers made a similar appeal.

Mobilized soldiers from the Sverdlovsk region and the Perm region also recorded a video message to Putin. The servicemen of the 1453rd Regiment arrived in the Donetsk region at the end of December and got in service at the 1st Brigade of the 1st Army Corps. The brigade command sent the soldiers to an assault "without reconnaissance and communications with other units." In the course of the fighting four of the soldiers were killed and 17 were injured. The servicemen report that the regiment's leadership intimidates them and threatens to put them in jail, send them to the Wagner Group or to "DPR" units if they refuse to fight at the front lines.

BBC News Russian tells what is known about Russian mobilized soldiers, who were assigned under the command of the armed forces of the so-called DPR and LPR. They take part in assaults, suffer huge losses and record appeals to the authorities with a request to intervene.

Relatives of the mobilized soldiers from the Tver region, who had recorded an address with a plea not to disband their unit, started collecting signatures under the appeal to the governor of the region with a request to take an active part in defining the fate of their loved ones after the video had been published.

Mothers of illegally mobilized students from the so-called DPR and LPR have been trying for more than half a year to bring their children back from the war in Ukraine. Full-time students were illegally mobilized at first and then they were forced to sign military service contracts, as women from several local settlements told the Astra Telegram channel. But nowadays, after the contracts have expired, the young men still can’t be demobilized. It should be reminded, that previously Russian president Vladimir Putin instructed the authorities of the so-called DPR and LPR to get the mobilized students back home. The authorities reported on executing the order.

The parliamentarian from the Rostov region Yury Mezinov delivers parcels to mobilized soldiers at the frontline. In October, he said that a lot of residents of the city of Bratsk in the Irkutsk region were fighting in the area of Kreminna. He used to visit them and deliver letters from home and reported that the guys had good fighting spirit. In the video recorded in March, he speaks about huge and pointless losses, a lack of shells and military equipment, “It’s the issue of the whole battlefront. There are no shells, do you get it? The boys are being killed by the hundreds here.”

Governor of the Irkutsk region Igor Kobzev announced on Mar. 11 that the issue regarding the mobilized soldiers from the 1439th Regiment had been resolved. Earlier, the soldiers had claimed that they were being sent to assault without "artillery, communications, reconnaissance, and sappers." "The question regarding this regiment has been resolved. They themselves will provide more detailed information to their relatives," said the head of the region. However, no information has been received about how the issue was "resolved."

Four participants of the September protest against mobilization in Russia’s constituent Republic of Dagestan, accused of assaulting a law enforcement officer, have been released from a detention center. In addition, the charges against the men have been downgraded. Initially, they were charged with using violence dangerous to life against a police officer, which carried a sentence of up to 10 years in prison. Now they are charged with intentionally inflicting minor bodily harm out of hooliganism, which carries a punishment of up to two years of imprisonment.

A resident of Yaroslavl, who set fire to a banner with the letter Z on the city’s House of Military Officers, has been sentenced to one and a half years of probation. The man was found guilty of vandalism committed on the grounds of political enmity.

In Samara, there are plans to install a monument to the participants of the “special military operation.” Governor Dmitry Azarov announced this at a meeting of the Public Chamber of the region. Earlier, Azarov had already promised to create a memorial in Makiivka in honor of the Samara mobilized soldiers who were killed in the strike on the vocational school, but so far only an improvised memorial created by local residents exists near the school.

Meanwhile, the salaries of mobilized soldiers from the Samara region were cut. The soldiers’ relatives initiated a discussion in a public group — the servicemen turned out to be underpaid. Comparing pay slips for the month, the women were indignant: although their husbands are on the frontline, their salaries are being reduced.

According to the Council of the Prikubansky rural settlement, State Duma [lower house of the Federal Assembly of Russia] member Ivan Demchenko allocated 300,000 rubles for building the Soldatskiy prival [Soldier's Rest], a dining facility for passing mobilized soldiers in the Krymsky district of the Krasnodar region.

Residents of the town of Zarechny near Penza wanted to ask the officials where to hide in case of bombing, but in response they were advised to take care of themselves on their own. Meanwhile, Mayor of the town Oleg Klimanov signed a decree on the measures for the urgent burial of corpses in wartime and peacetime.

Farmers Vyacheslav and Tamara from the village of Platovo in the Altai Republic [Russia’s constituent republic], donated 20 sacks of potatoes grown in their garden to the families of the mobilized soldiers. In the meantime, trench candles and camouflage nets for military personnel are made in the nursing home for the elderly and disabled in the village of Ust-Kan, Altai region [federal subject of Russia].

A concert, where trench candles and other aid for mobilized soldiers will be collected, is planned in the village of Timiryazevsky, Chelyabinsk region. On-stage performance groups of schoolchildren and pre-schoolers have been involved to take part in the entertainment program.