Commanders Shot Those Who Didn’t Want to Fight
An ex-Wagner mercenary said the group’s leaders shot dead soldiers who didn’t want to fight in Ukraine. “They brought two prisoners who refused to fight and they shot them in front of everyone,” he told CNN. He added that soldiers are often sent into battle with no guidance and “no real tactics.” Loading Something is loading.
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An ex-Wagner mercenary who recently fled the war in Ukraine told horror stories claiming that Russian-backed soldiers who didn’t want to fight in Ukraine were taken in front of new recruits and shot.
“They would round up those who didn’t want to fight and shoot them in front of newcomers,” Andrei Medvedev told CNN’s Anderson Cooper while discussing the “reckless” tactic.
“They brought two prisoners who refused to fight and they shot them in front of everyone and buried them right in the trenches dug by the trainees,” Medvedev claimed.
He added that soldiers are often sent into battle with no guidance and “no real tactics.”
“We just received orders about the enemy’s position… There were no clear orders about how to behave,” Medvedev explained. “We just planned how we were going to proceed step by step. Who would open fire, what kind of shifts would we have… How it would turn out, that was our problem.”
Medvedev had previously served in the Russian army before joining Wagner as a volunteer in July 2022. He told CNN he was fighting in Ukraine less than 10 days after signing his contract.
He told CNN that it took only six days of deployment to Ukraine to know he no longer wanted to fight for the private military group after seeing what they are doing to their own members, but that he did until recently didn’t have a chance to go.
“I was afraid of being caught and shot as a traitor,” he said.
Medvedev is now in Oslo, Norway after crossing the border from Russia. Now he is seeking asylum.
Medvedev told CNN he evaded arrest and dodged bullets from Russian forces “at least 10 times” during his escape.
The Wagner Group, a notorious Russian paramilitary organization with close ties to the Kremlin, appears to be the main force in the Russian war in Ukraine.
The US released a comprehensive list of sanctions against the group on Thursday, labeling Wagner a “significant transnational criminal organization.” The sanctions target a handful of individuals – “cronies” of Russian President Vladimir Putin – and organizations involved in the mercenary group’s global network.