mobilization briefs
May 8, 2023

Mobilization in Russia for May 5–7, 2023 CIT volunteer summary

Authorities and Legislation

On the evening of May 5, MinTsifry [the Ministry of Digital Development, Communications and Mass Media of Russia] published a draft resolution aiming to create a common register of Russians subject to military service by the end of the year. A few minutes after publication, the document disappeared from the portal of proposed regulations because of a “technical error”, according to a statement released by the Ministry. Later, it became available once again.

A team of legal experts from the Voyennye Advokaty [Military Lawyers] Telegram channel studied the published document. The text of the draft resolution describes three phases for the creation of this digital register:

  • Between July 1, 2023 and Dec. 31, 2023, deliver a new information system as an IT product;
  • Between Jan. 1, 2024 and Dec. 31, 2024, test the new system and connect draft offices to the military service register;
  • Starting from Jan. 1, 2025, draft offices will have full access to the register, will be able to perform updates and distribute digital draft notices.

The register is expected to contain 24 information items about Russians subject to military service, including passport data, taxpayer identification number, social security number, as well as information about employment, deferments, etc. The registry will also contain a large set of medical information, indicating if a person has any diseases, mental disorders, disabilities or if they are registered at a drug treatment center.

Member of the State Duma [lower house of Russia's Federal Assembly] Mikhail Matveyev called for migrants, who obtained Russian citizenship, to be sent to war. He deplored that "an army of Central Asians is forming regiments of cab drivers, divisions of street cleaners and construction workers, but not mechanized infantry or mortar units for the special military operation”. He wants to introduce amendments regarding dual citizenship, because he suspects the current legislation enables Central Asian migrants to dodge the draft.

The Moscow authorities mandated employees of state-owned housing and utility companies to remain on the guard for potential drone flights and other war-related risks during the period of May holidays. The shifts will be unpaid and will last from 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. each day. Consecutive shifts will be organized through May 8, while starting from May 9 Victory Day holiday, the still unpaid shifts are required to be overlapping to provide coverage between overlaps, with a particular focus along the route of movement of armed vehicles.

Conscription and Military Service Advertising

The Khanty-Mansiysk Autonomous Region will pay a half a million ruble sign-up bonus to foreign citizens enlisting for contract-based military service with the Russian Army. In case of an injury or a major trauma, a foreign soldier will be eligible for a 1 million ruble payout. Overall, the region is planning to recruit up to 2,500 foreigners for the war in Ukraine.

In Mordovia [Russia’s constituent republic], a billboard advertising contract service was placed next to a memorial plaque installed in the homage to the fallen in local wars and armed conflicts.

A regional newspaper of the Tver region is encouraging local men to sign up for a contract, describing generous benefits in its post on the VKontakte social network. The post also features an inspirational appeal from the deputy chairman of the regional Council of Veterans.

Mobilized Soldiers and Volunteer Fighters

The list of casualties among the mobilized troops deployed to Ukraine is growing day by day, having recently included Ilya Kharlamkin from Saint Petersburg, Marat Bikkinin from the Orenburg region and Aleksey Bolochenkov from Oryol.

Dovod [independent media outlet] reports that 29-year-old resident of the town of Vyazniki in the Vladimir region Dmitry Kazakov, a mobilized soldier with the 252nd Guards Motorized Rifle Regiment, was taken prisoner. Meanwhile, another resident of the Vladimir region returned to Russia from captivity. The name of the soldier is not disclosed.

Volunteer fighters from Bashkortostan [Russia’s constituent republic] recorded a video message to Radiy Khabirov, the head of the region. They complained about the behavior of their commander, who, according to them, arbitrarily disposes of humanitarian aid, abuses alcohol, and got himself a “battlefield wife,” while “fake cases” are opened against the mobilized.

Sentences and Incidents

In Yeysk, a 45-year-old resident blew himself up in a car with a homemade explosive device. Traffic police officers stopped the Niva car, but the driver locked himself in it and threatened them with an explosion. For several hours the area was cordoned off by the police; at some point, the officers of Rosgvardia [the National Guard of Russia] tried to approach the car, after which an explosion immediately occurred. The driver died at the scene.

In Novorossiysk, a sentry shot dead a man who trespassed into the territory of a military unit through the hole in a fence at about 2 a.m. on May 7. The second man, who also trespassed into the unit, was detained. Both men have been identified: Adoli Askhabov, a 24-year-old resident of Chechnya [Russia’s constituent republic], was killed, and Musa Bisultanov, a 23-year-old resident of Gelendzhik, Krasnodar region, was detained. It remains unknown why the men entered the territory of the unit.

On the night of May 6 to 7, arson of the railway relay and battery cases occurred near Magnitogorsk, Chelyabinsk region. According to the VChK-OGPU Telegram channel sources, a fire was spotted on the railroad stretch between Supryak and Tsemzavod stations of the South Ural Railways around midnight on May 7. Unidentified individuals set two cases on fire resulting in them burning out. No one has been arrested yet.

The Federal Financial Monitoring Service of the Russian Federation added the detained for arson of the rail infrastructure residents of Kaluga to the terrorist list. Earlier, the security officials accused them of terrorism committed by a group of persons in a preliminary conspiracy (Article 205 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation).

Two men tried to set fire to the military commissariat [enlistment office] of the Kirovsky and Oktyabrsky districts in Yekaterinburg. They were detained by a police officer guarding the military commissariat when they approached the building with a canister of gasoline. The men were taken to the Federal Security Service (FSB), where they claimed that somebody had promised them 40,000 rubles for setting the military commissariat on fire.

A mobilized soldier died while planting an anti-personnel mine in the Bryansk region. According to the ASTRA Telegram channel, the soldier was installing an OZM-72 high-explosive, bounding, fragmentation, anti-personnel landmine near the village of Pervomaisky, Starodubsky district on May 5. The mine exploded during the installation killing the serviceman on the spot.

The press office of the Border Service of the Federal Security Service of the Leningrad region announced that the agency together with the police and Rosgvardia would implement security measures in the border communities of the region in May. Residents are asked to carry identification documents with them when leaving the house. Aleksandr Drozdenko, Governor of the region, held a meeting with the heads of the local law enforcement agencies to ensure security in the region and ordered the special regiment of the Ministry of Internal Affairs to be supplied with electronic warfare guns to train local policemen. Earlier a power line was blown up in the village of Susaninskoe and six more homemade explosive devices were defused on power line pylons in the Gatchinsky district.


White Raven, the pro-war student movement, created by the students of the Higher School of Economics, reported on the purchase of clothes, hygiene products, medicines, and tools for the Russian Armed Forces.

A 10-year-old boy from Buryatia [Russia’s constituent republic] donated 3,600 rubles [USD 46] — all his savings — to wounded countrymen in a military hospital. The men were also assisted by four female volunteers from Buryatia. In addition, the Women's Movement of United Russia and members of the Volunteers of the Hospital of Ulan-Ude Viber group sent parcels with aid to the wounded. The servicemen recorded videos with gratitude in response. Meanwhile, servicemen from the Zabaykalsky region thanked Governor of the region Aleksandr Osipov for the purchased equipment and gear.


Another participant of the “special military operation met with educatees of the Mustang children's automobile sports club in the Vladimir region. The club regularly invites participants in the war, shows military chronicles and talks about the “aggressive policy of the NATO countries.”

In one of the schools in the Sverdlovsk region, three year four students lost consciousness during the Immortal Regiment school rally. The children were gathered in a corridor to record a video, but it was so stuffy in there that some of them began to faint. According to the E1.RU news portal of Yekaterinburg, one child suffered facial injuries after the fall, but the school staff did not call an ambulance for the injured child, but simply called the mother to take him home.

Yevgeny Prigozhin [Russian oligarch, confidant of Vladimir Putin and the owner of the Wagner Group] posted a video showing a little boy dressed in a military uniform reading an address demanding shells to be handed over to the Wagner Group mercenaries.

Academician of the Southern Scientific Center of the Russian Academy of Sciences Andrey Venkov made a speech about raising children at the opening of the Museum of Military Historical Miniatures in Rostov-on-Don. According to the "historian", the younger generation should be brought up "in an offensive manner" in order to resist the next "crusade" from the West. Also, the "historian" expressed regret that during the capture of Paris in 1814, Russian troops did not burn the city.

A secondary school in Volgograd has been renamed in honor of the killed deputy head of the Kherson occupational administration Aleksey Katerinichev. Russian authorities assigned him to the post in Aug. 2022. On Sep. 30, he was killed in an AFU missile strike. Katerinichev did not have any connection to the Volgograd school.

Victory Day

The Sirena news outlet summarized children’s activities dedicated to May 9. Besides marching in parades, children danced to wartime music, listened to "Talking About Important Things" [special school lessons aiming to explain the war], and made medals for “special military operation” participants out of playdough.

The Vyorstka news outlet polled parents of schoolchildren and kindergarteners on how their attitudes towards May 9 had changed and why they no longer allowed their children to take part in Victory Day activities that had not yet become compulsory. In a recent email blast, the Gosuslugi public services portal suggested that subscribers use the holiday occasion and write a letter to soldiers participating in the war.

In Kislovodsk, yet another parade of kindergarteners was held along with a holiday concert and an Immortal Regiment rally [where participants carry portraits of their ancestors who fought in World War II]. In Tyumen, the local Immortal Regiment rally took place in a pond. Participants swam through icy-cold spring water carrying flags and portraits of war veterans.

Vyorstka published an article on how veterans of the Great Patriotic War [the Soviet name for World War II] and their families are suing the state to receive housing and other benefits. The news outlet reviewed court transcripts and discovered that even with the support of the military prosecutor’s office, veterans were not always able to receive favorable judgements that would solve their problems.