Russian Soldiers In Ukraine

OSCE data shows 28000 individuals in military-style clothes crossing Russian-Ukrainian border since 2014

Despite the strict limits imposed on the Observer Mission’s mandate and operating procedures, the Mission has nevertheless recorded clear indications of Russia’s destabilizing and destructive activity in Donbas, including reports of more than 28,000 crossings of individuals in military-style dress at the two checkpoints since the Observer Mission’s operations began. Numerous individuals even clarified to OSCE observers that while they do not cross with weapons, they retrieve weapons in separatist-held parts of Ukraine. Despite Russian attempts to portray these men and women as simple civilians, it is clear to all that they are crossing into Ukraine to fight. The Observer Mission has reported on clearly marked military funerary vehicles returning to Russia on 26 different occasions since the inception of the Observer Mission – most recently on April 6. Such evidence is further corroborated by the SMM, which on June 10 observed the exhumation of a soldier in a Russian military uniform, and spoke with a gunman who freely admitted he came from the Russian Federation to fight for the separatists. Thousands of Russian military personnel or mercenaries have crossed the border at the two points where the OSCE has a presence. Untold thousands of additional personnel may have crossed where there are no international observers.

Selfie soldier: Story of an active service Russian soldier with selfies in Ukraine

Vice news investigated the presence of soldiers in Ukraine of a Central Asian ethnicity (uncommon for native Ukrainians) and tracked one of them down via his social media trail. Turns out the person in question is an active contract soldier of the Russian army and his trail of social media selfies lead all the way into Ukraine. Note the white band around the arm or leg, this little identification mark can be seen here and there in videos of "militants".


Russian special forces guys captured in Ukraine

Russia’s response was to claim that these men had resigned just prior to the conflict, this claim came as a surprise to one of soldiers who is hoping to press charges against the Russian Military of Defence in order to prove that he is an active soldier so as to avoid terrorism charges and instead be treated as a prisoner of war.

Paratroopers captured 30 Km from the Russian border

In 2014, several Russian paratroopers were captured in Ukraine. Putin’s excuse for this was that they merely got "lost" (remember this is the same man who claimed the "little green men" in Crimea were just local self defence forces, only to admit later on that he lied).

Interviews with family of soldiers who likely died or went missing in Ukraine

Vice news investigated the deaths of various soldiers who are suspected to have died in Ukraine. The journalists got harassed by masked men and their taxi driver got a call from the Russian ministry of security(the precise name?). One of the soldiers death certificates stated that he died in Russia yet other paper work showed that his corpse was transported across the border.

Some Russian families have opened up about being sent to fight in Ukraine and loosing sons there who served in the army at the time of their death

Interviews with ex-militants who witnessed presence of Russian soldiers

Here are three interviews, one with a Kyrygyzstan mercenary, another with a Russian national, and the third a Russian national with Chechen roots. Two of the men men soon realized that the situation in Ukraine is not as the propaganda portrays it and all three mention the presence of the Russian army.

Nemtsov's report: Pskov paratroopers

Nemtsov's report has details about a group of paratroopers from Pskov that was wiped out in Ukraine, at least 70 troopers died. The report has interviews with family of paratroopers as well as visits to their grave sites. Here is a English version with similar content.

Russian army Major caught delivering weapons in Ukraine

After taking a wrong turn in the combat zone, Russian army major Vladimir Starkov (by his own confession) was arrested and his truck which was full of ammunition was seized.

He has now been sentenced to 14 years in jail and is asking Russian president Putin to acknowledge the Russian military operation in Ukraine and designate him a prisoner of war so that he may go home sooner.



Statistics: desertions in the Russian army increased 8 fold

Russian newspaper, has reports (English translation available here) about several dozen young men facing prison time for deserting the Russian army. Apparently the men were harassed to "volunteer" to go fight in Ukraine and forced to live in unbearable conditions until they accepted. The lawyers representing these young men revealed that 62 men have been convicted of deserting between January and July of 2015 while only 35 have been convicted between 2010 and 2014, about a 8 fold increase, if we are to believe Putins claim that Russia is not involved in this war, then what explains this increase?

Websites tracking missing(possibly killed in Ukraine) Russian fighters

OSCE observations of what appears to be Russian soldiers

Remember, OSCE does not judge if the soldiers are Russian or not, they just report the observed facts. Here are some such facts:

On May 28, 2015, OSCE Observed:

In the village the SMM spoke to two women, both wearing military uniforms, with caps with Russian Federation Armed Forces insignia. They said that they were from Kramatorsk. During the conversation with the two women a vehicle with Russian Federation number plates stopped next to the OSCE vehicles and two armed men, similarly dressed, exited the car and ordered the women to stop the conversation with the SMM

On September 27, 2015:

At the “Shakhtarski Zori” health resort in Proletarskyi district of “DPR”-controlled Donetsk city, the SMM observed on 27 September a civilian mini-van with Russian Federation Krasnodar region licence plates. The licence plate number was fixed on a factory-made frame carrying the Russian inscription “FSB of Russian Federation”. As the SMM was about to depart from the facility, a male wearing the Russian new-style camouflage uniform without any rank, insignia or patches, came out of the resort building and took a photograph or video of the leaving SMM vehicle, and made written notes.

Interview with Russian solider who was burned fighting in Ukraine

Russian newspaper Novayagazeta published an interview with a Russian Buryat ethnic soldier who suffered severe injuries while fighting in Ukraine. Coincidentally, or not so coincidentally Russian media regulator has given Novayagazeta two warning since the conflict in Ukraine began. Euromaidanpress has a translation. Amid contradictory justifications, the soldier is quit open about Russias military involvement in Ukraine and how they attempt to take it off the official books. Now his family struggles to find financial support for his medical treatments, after all Russian government still refuses to acknowledge that its even involved in Ukraine.


Todo section

Todo.. a extensive set of of links…

Todo.. SBU report, would like to expand on each of the claims herein…

Todo.. Reddit sub with lots of great material…

More TODO stuff:

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