Nearly 600 conscripted soldiers had been involved in Russia’s so-called “special military operation” in Ukraine, with about 12 officers prosecuted for the violation, Interfax quoted Artur Yegiev, military prosecutor of the Western District, as saying in his speech before the Federation Council of the Russian Federation.
“According to the supervision [data] for the Western Military District, nearly 600 conscripts had been involved in the special military operation, all of them were returned as soon as possible.”
Earlier, the Russian Defense Ministry included military unit 84201, whose sailors had served on the cruiser Moskva, in the list of participants in the “special military operation.” However, so far neither the Prosecutor’s Office nor the Defense Ministry has admitted that the Moskva cruiser itself took part in the war with Ukraine. At the beginning of May, Agentstvo’s sources reported that two-thirds of the Moskva’s crew, or around 300 sailors, could have been conscripts.
The Russian Defense Ministry reported the loss of the cruiser Moskva, the flagship of the Black Sea Fleet, on April 14. Earlier, the ministry reported that “the ammunition had detonated” on the cruiser, as a result of which a fire broke out. In the evening of April 13, the Ukrainian side said that the Russian cruiser had been hit by Neptun missiles. At first, the Defense Ministry reported that the entire crew had been “evacuated in a timely manner,” but a few days later, reports began to surface about “missing” sailors from the Moskva. Even then there were reports of conscripts serving alongside contract crew members.
Since the beginning of the war, the Russian side has been trying to conceal the participation of conscripts, and Russian President Vladimir Putin has denied this possibility. On March 9, the Defense Ministry admitted for the first time that conscripts did take part in the invasion and that some of them were captured.