Six armed Wagner mercenaries escaped from a training camp in the Luhansk region on Friday. The fugitives are probably prisoners recruited by Wagner financier Yevgeny Prigozhin in Russian prisons. Rostov-on-Don residents are urged to exercise caution.
Russian prisoners can expect impunity if they risk their lives on the battlefields in Ukraine. With this deal, the Russian shadow army and mercenary group Wagner made headlines in the summer. On Friday it became clear how dangerous these plans are for the Russian population.
Six soldiers recruited from the prisons have escaped from a Wagner Group training camp in the Sorokyne district of the Russian-occupied Luhansk region. According to the American Institute for War Studies (ISW), the men are said to be armed and dangerous. Rostov-on-Don broadcaster “tsargard.tv” reports that the men may have fled to the Russian region in the far east of the Sea of Azov.
“The six escaped fighters are armed and pose a danger to the population,” says the broadcaster’s website. “Residents of the Don region are asked to be vigilant and watch out for people in military camouflage uniforms.”
At the training ground in Sorokyne, Wagner mercenaries are trained at shooting ranges for combat in the Ukraine war before going onto the battlefield. The men are said to be three Uzbeks and one each from Russia, Belarus and Kyrgyz, all of whom have been convicted of drug possession.
According to the ISW, Prigozhin then tried to downplay the incident. He claimed to know more than the press and has already arrested “a lot of scoundrels”. The Russian population can rest assured.
Since the summer, Putin confidant Prigozhin has been recruiting prisoners from Russian prisons to fight on the battlefield in Ukraine. According to British intelligence, the mercenaries receive their orders and attack routes via smartphone. According to the British, anyone who deviates from the specified routes or deserts “probably faces a professional execution”.