mobilization briefs
March 4, 2023

Mobilization in Russia for Mar. 2 – 3, 2023 CIT volunteer summary 

On Mar. 3, Putin held a meeting of the Security Council. It was held behind closed doors. During the meeting, several decrees signed by the president appeared at once. One of them is about the external administration at enterprises that fail to deliver the orders of the Ministry of Defense during martial law. The managers of such enterprises will be appointed by the government, and external administration may operate while martial law remains in force. The President also signed a decree expanding the range of tasks of draft offices. Now they will issue veteran IDs and perform "other tasks" under the law of the Russian Federation.

Head of the Defense Committee of the Federation Council [upper house of the Federal Assembly of Russia] Viktor Bondarev told RIA Novosti [Russian state-owned news agency] that the regular biannual conscription age could change this fall if the relevant bill is submitted to the State Duma [lower house of the Federal Assembly of Russia] in the spring, and the law itself is passed by the summer.

Last October, Putin allowed “special military operation” soldiers to demand credit holidays to suspend loan payments. After that, mobilized men and their families complained about cases of transferring debts to collectors; the Bank of Russia received 900 such complaints, 100 of which it considered justified.

The authorities of Bashkiria [constituent republic of Russia]  disclosed the amount of money they spent on supporting the mobilized volunteers and their families: hundreds of millions of rubles were allocated from the regional budget for this purpose.

The mobilized continue to die in the war in Ukraine. 24-year-old Vasily Sevryugin from the Krasnoyarsk region, Bator Galsanov from Buryatia, 37-year-old Aleksandr Afanasiev from the Novosibirsk region, Nikolay Poltorak and Dmitry Zheltov from the Volgograd region were killed at the front.

The name of the 134th killed in the Makiivka strike is revealed — this is Vladimir Yarushkin.

The story of the Irkutsk mobilized from the 1439th regiment continues. On the morning of Mar. 3, Governor of the Irkutsk region Igor Kobzev reported on his Telegram channel that during the night, the region government representatives accompanied by veterans of military operations in Afghanistan and Chechnya have flown out to the mobilized. Their goal is to “establish cooperation” with the regiment, whose members complained three times in their video messages that they were being sent into assaults. Additionally, the visitors are providing soldiers with UAZ vans, quadcopters, fuel-based electricity generators, chainsaws, and warm clothes — more than six tons of aid in total.

It appears that not all of the draftees will receive the assistance they require. On Mar. 3, relatives of two draftees assigned to the 1439th Regiment reported to the Sibir.Realii [part of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty] media outlet that "there is nothing left of the regiment" — several people were wounded, and the rest were either killed or abandoned on the battlefield. The wives of draftees from the 1439th regiment recorded a video message for Vladimir Putin. According to them, only he can save their husbands, whom their commanders abandoned to their fates near the village of Opytne in the Donetsk region. The draftees themselves, apparently, are also trying to record a video message, but they are afraid of the commanders who are nearby.

Draftees from Mordovia and Mari El [Russia's constituent republics] from the 1252nd Regiment also recorded a video message for Putin. They claim that they were sent to the front line without proper training. According to them, in mid-January, they arrived in Lysychansk, where their regiment was disbanded and attached to local units formed in the so-called Luhansk People's Republic. "Almost immediately we were sent to the combat line without making an entry in military IDs, without ammunition, without proper training," the draftees report. There are already killed and wounded among the draftees.

Military commanders in the so-called LPR and DPR show indifference to the fate of more than just mobilized men from Russia. Valeriya, the wife of Stanislav Boyko from Shakhtarsk [an occupied town in the Donetsk region], complained about the abuse which her husband and his fellow servicemen are suffering at the hands of their commanders. She claims that her husband has been fighting since February of last year, despite not being issued even a military ID. In a recent episode, his commanders sent him and his comrades to dig fortifications in a field and abandoned them there.

In addition to abandoning their subordinates without supplies and support, military commanders are also resorting to violence and death threats. Several such cases are reported by the Sibir.Realii online media outlet.

A former contracted soldier, released from service in Sept. 2022, was detained on Feb. 26, 2023, in the Moscow metro and forcibly sent to the barracks of the Semyonovsky Regiment, despite no formal measure of restraint having been imposed on him. The man was surprised to learn that he was on the federal wanted list for abandoning his military unit without authorization, which is punishable by imprisonment for up to 5 years.

A 16-year-old student of High School No. 166 of Saint Petersburg, mentioned in our earlier summaries, was taken into custody on charges of an attempted terrorist attack for trying to set fire to a draft office in the town of Kirovsk in the Leningrad region.

The district military court sentenced a 21-year-old conscript from Vladivostok to seven years in prison. The young man was found guilty of committing a terrorist act (Part 1 of Article 205 of the Criminal Code). The prosecutors’ theory is that on the night of Jun. 8, the accused, whose name is not revealed, set fire to the draft office building in the city of Vladivostok. The security forces claim he did that with intent “to undermine the activity of the institution and to pressure government officials into ending the “special military operation.”

The E1.RU news outlet from Yekaterinburg published the story of twin brothers from Yekaterinburg orphanage, whose fate the state never cared about. Despite the neglect, one of the brothers, Victor, went to war with Ukraine, where he was seriously injured. Now the man is in the intensive care unit of a Moscow hospital. The only person who cares about him is his twin brother Semyon. Semyon does not know where to take his brother after discharge from the hospital. After the orphanage, the brothers ended up on the street, and the authorities evaded fulfilling their care obligations to the orphans. At the same time, Victor is not been officially recognized as wounded for the third month already, and therefore he cannot count on any payments for the injury.

A 30-year-old draftee Nikolay Murashov from the town of Luga, Leningrad region, fell off an open truck on the way to the shooting range and was run over by a following truck. His family was denied compensation because Murashov was killed, not in action.

Vitaly Bykov, a member of the Novosibirsk Region Parliament from the Communist Party of the Russian Federation, helped to equip a mother of three children who decided to follow her husband to the war with Ukraine. The woman contacted the legislator’s office with the list of equipment and medical supplies she needed. Everything has been procured.

Russian schoolchildren are being persecuted for having anti-war views. According to the OVD-Info [Independent human rights project], since the beginning of the war, at least nine minors have become defendants in criminal cases due to their anti-war position. Moreover, in order to prevent abuse by teachers from being recorded, filming during lessons is to be prohibited. Mediazona [an independent Russian media outlet] has prepared instructions for teenagers on what to do in case school or the police are giving them trouble for having anti-war views.

In one of our previous summaries, we reported that a Wagner Group mercenary gave a "lecture" to 10th-grade students at Moscow School No. 183. As one of our subscribers who regularly visit the school later told us, the classroom in which the presented video was filmed is not a classroom of school No. 183. Therefore, at the moment, we cannot determine where and under what circumstances this video was filmed.