A group of mobilized men from the republic of Bashkortostan recently recorded a video message to Russian officials complaining about the “very poor” conditions in which they were left by their command. According to the men, they lacked food and water. After the video was released, the men were sent to Ukraine without preparation or training, three of the mobilized soldiers’ wives told TV Rain.
In the video, the conscripts say that they were transferred to the outskirts of Enerhodar in Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia region a week after Vladimir Putin announced the mobilization. According to them, they lacked necessary supplies, while part of the unit was sent “to the fields, where there is no water or food.” The men had to buy food on their own from the nearest village, while many mobilized soldiers had to sleep on a hangar floor, and subsequently fell ill.
“How long can this go on? Either we’ve been called up to fight and defend our homeland, or we’ve been called up to sleep where we can and get sick,” the men said.
According to TV Rain, the men were sent to the “second front line” on October 25.
One of the men’s wives, Aigul Gazizova, said that she was able to talk to her husband in the morning – “he was already digging trenches at that time” – with shells flying nearby. The wife of another serviceman, Denis Kalimullin, says her husband and his comrades were sent to the “second front line” – again without food or water. The “second front line,” as TV Rain notes, refers to the second line of defense, which will be used in the event of a break in the first line.
According to reports from relatives, the conscripts were sent to Saratov for “combat training” on October 4. However, they did not receive any training, as «they were given weapons to show to the command, which were then immediately taken back.”
After that, two battalions from Saratov were sent to Crimea, where they spent three days on a train. Only then were they brought to the forest near Enerhodar and left there. At night, some of them were moved to the granary, and the men were forced to repair the agricultural machinery. In return, they were promised water and food.
According to relatives, the soldiers ended up eating almost nothing for five days and drinking water from puddles.
“When they were in the warehouses, you could hear them talk and cough horribly. They just got there, and they were already [sick]. What kind of soldiers are they – without water, hungry, cold? At least they can be provided with water and food,» one of the soldier’s wives told TV Rain.