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Wagner Group. The truth came to light. This is how they recruited for the war in Ukraine

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The recruitment of soldiers in prisons was determined by the Wagnerite leadership, including the then head of this formation Yevgeny Prigozhinas “project 42174” or “project K”.

The inmates were promised freedom i pardon after six months spent at the front. It was also believed that in the event of the mercenary's death, his relatives would receive high compensation.

The first prisoners were recruited by Wagner Group On July 1, 2022 in one of the penal colonies in Leningrad Oblast. The last such case was recorded on February 7, 2023 Kemerovo Oblast in Siberia – this information was provided by journalists who analyzed internal documents of the Wagner Group.

War in Ukraine. Wagner's group recruited soldiers in prisons

Even the authorities of the Wagner Group did not hide the fact that prisoners sent to the Bachmut section of the front were sent to death, because the battle for the city was called the “Bachmut slaughterhouse”. A total of over 19,500 people died during the fighting. Wagnerians, of which nearly 17.2 thousand were people recruited in prisons – we read in the report.

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Investigative journalists managed to identify 341 out of 501 gulags where prisoners recruited for the front were to serve their sentences. As many as 227 are high-security penal colonies, and 28 – prisons with special status, intended for particularly dangerous criminals, including: people sentenced to life imprisonment – the BBC and Mediazona jointly revealed.

The documents show that the Wagnerians paid the families of the fallen prisoners total compensation an amount of almost 108 billion rubles, i.e. nearly PLN 5 billion. Each family was to receive 5 million rubles (approximately PLN 225,000) and an additional 300,000. rubles (over PLN 13,000) to organize a funeral.

War in Ukraine. Battle of the Wagnerites for Bachmut

The Battle of Bakhmut was one of the longest and bloodiest engagements of the war Russia against Ukraine. The fighting lasted from August 2022 to the second half of May 2023, when Prigozhin declared that his units had captured the city.

Information about sending Russian prisoners to war has appeared since 2022, almost from the beginning of the open invasion Kremlin to Ukraine. The reports by the Russian editorial staff of the BBC and Mediazona coincide with the previous estimates of Western analysts, who estimated the number of prisoners recruited for the front to be at least several dozen thousand.

The Wagner Group marches on Moscow

On June 23, it will be a year since the Wagner Group's mercenaries marched on… Moscow. On Friday, June 23, 2023, Prigozhin's men captured the Russian army headquarters in Rostov-on-Don and then began to advance towards the capital. Prigozhin demanded the “restoration of justice” in the army and the removal of the defense minister from power Sergei Shoigu. He finally stopped the march on the evening of June 24.

Two months later, he died in an Embraer plane crash. The machine crashed on August 23 in Tver Oblast.

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