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“I confess to all crimes, commanders should be punished” — Russian soldier recounts occupation of Kyiv area to journalists

Vazhniye Istorii has leaned the names of Russian soldiers involved in the murders of local residents in the village of Andreevka, Kyiv region, which was under occupation by Russian troops from late February to April. One of the soldiers confessed to his crimes during a conversation with a journalist.

While retreating, Russian soldiers left in the village not only hundreds of pillaged houses but also 25 photographs taken with a phone stolen from a local resident. The photos were used to identify some of them. Their names are Daniil Frolkin, Dmitry Danilov, Ruslan Glotov, and Ivan Shepelenko, Vazhniye Istorii claims.

One of them the identified men, Daniil Frolkin, gave a detailed interview to Vazhniye Istorii explaining that he was telling the truth for the sake of the “lads” who were about to be sent back to the front lines after many months of service: “Our lads will be spared, they will be sent back home because of me. It's better to lose one life than to lose the lives of 200-300 people.”

In his first conversation with the journalist Frolkin confirmed that the Russian military had been engaged in looting. According to him, Colonel Vyacheslav Klobukov, deputy commander in charge of logistics, was especially good at it: “He used to steal refrigerators from the stores. Then we looked for stores with sneakers, with all sorts of clothes – he stole everything from there, too. By truckload. When we came to Belarus, I saw those two trucks”.

An official confession followed:

“I, a military serviceman from military unit 51460, Guards Private First Class, Frolkin Daniel Andreevich, confess to all the crimes I committed in Andreevka, to shooting civilians, stealing from civilians, taking their phones, and also to the fact that our command does not give a shit about our fighters, our infantry troops fighting on the front line. Also I want to state: measures should be taken to punish our commanders - Azatbek Asanbekovich Omurbekov, Guards Colonel, Guards Lieutenant Colonel Dmitrenko, our brigade's deputy commander for logistics and supplies Colonel Klobukov, and the chief of intelligence Lieutenant Colonel Romanenko. He was in charge of reconnaissance, which was poorly organized and caused a lot of our men to be killed. Also, Lieutenant Colonel Prokurat, deputy brigade commander, gave the order to shoot people.”

Frolkin said the brigade commanders “do not treat ordinary soldiers as human beings.” According to him, Colonel Azatbek Omurbekov fed false information to the higher command about the brigade's non-existent successes. According to the serviceman, during the whole occupation of Andreevka, the commander “was sitting in the basement of the school” where the headquarters were located.

When asked by the journalist to clarify what he meant by “the shooting of civilians”, Frolkin confessed that in March the commanders asked him and several other privates to accompany them during the search of the houses of three Andreevka residents who were subsequently robbed and then ordered “to be shot”.

One of the local residents was killed by Frolkin; he is certain that the man he killed had been transmitting the coordinates of Russian army convoys:

“I tell him, 'Step forward.' He steps forward. I tell him: “Get down on your knees.” And I just put a bullet through his forehead (a slip of the tongue: he meant “through the back of his head”). I killed one person, but I wanted to save as many people as I could.”

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