A new report released on Thursday claims that hundreds of Russian soldiers who objected to the conflict in Ukraine are being imprisoned against their will in basements and garages in the seized Luhansk.
At least 234 soldiers who were deployed to various regions of Ukraine are reportedly being kept at facilities in the town of Bryanka, according to reports from the soldiers’ families and human rights organizations, according to the independent news source Verstka.
According to the family members of some of the men, there is a particular center there for individuals who decide to leave the battle due to declining morale and diminishing military numbers.
Alexander’s father, Vasily, a 23-year-old soldier, was reportedly speaking to Verstka about the peculiar series of occurrences that, in his perspective, led to his son being held captive by his army.
He claimed Alexander called on July 8 to inform him that he and several other soldiers had officially requested to leave the fight to military command. He contended that Alexander then told him that he had been asked to meet with a Russian general to “discuss” his choice.
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Vasily recalled that the next time Alexander called him, he reported being locked up in a Bryanka basement with other soldiers who had attempted to resign many days later.
He was apparently still in the basement as of Wednesday.
Another 22-year-old soldier’s mother, Fatima Gorshenina, claimed that her son and the other captives were imprisoned in a basement without food, water, or electricity.
Additionally, based on her story, the Wagner Group, a private military organization tied to the Kremlin and suspected of war crimes across the Middle East, Africa, and Ukraine, as well as Russia’s potent Federal Security Service, appear to be involved in the captivity plan.
She informed Verstka that her son Artyom and at least 81 other soldiers from the same Russian military outpost in Abkhazia had formally declared their intention to end the war in April.
After “nothing was done,” Artyom and a colleague soldier left their base in the Ukrainian area of Kherson and traveled to Crimea, where they sought assistance from the local FSB. According to Gorshenina, the FSB finally showed signs of help, promising to take Artyom and several other soldiers from the same base back to Abkhazia so they could present their petitions to leave to the military command.
But before they knew it, their aircraft had touched down in the Rostov region of Russia, where the soldiers were separated up and flown to Bryanka by helicopter, according to Gorshenina.
Artyom reported that they were guarded by members of a private military force who identified themselves as “musicians” before they were ultimately imprisoned in cellars (a popular nickname for members of the Wagner group).
“We called the military base, the squadron commanders, and the base commanders when they brought the guys to Bryanka. I questioned them about their plans and the reason they hadn’t removed the men from the situation, according to Gorshenina. “I was informed that a new center for objectors is located there. With them, they are in conversations, she said.
The troops were informed that if they couldn’t be persuaded to prolong their service after two weeks, they would be taken back to their base to terminate their contracts, but “that didn’t happen,” Gorshenina claimed.
She claimed that instead, an unidentified person pretended to be her kid in messages with her as she looked for ways to save her son.
“Gnom, what is the name of your cat? I wrote to him as we refer to him at home. All of the texts stopped after that, she claimed.
His whereabouts were unknown as of Thursday.
According to information from accessible sources, at least 1,793 soldiers have so far publicly declined to take part in the conflict. Ukrainian intelligence has reported a number of instances in which Russian troops took desperate measures to try and escape, in some cases directly fleeing across the border and in others purposefully injuring themselves, amid reports of Russian commanders threatening troops with prosecution if they choose to abandon the fight.
According to Ukraine’s Security Service, a Russian soldier told his father that he had “made up his mind” to “somehow break his leg on the stairs” in one of the ridiculous attempts to flee the conflict.
When that failed, his father gave him advice on effectively breaking his arm.