Kremlin washes hands of Russian soldiers captured in Ukraine, calls them ‘mercenaries’

Konstantin Kravchuk, a lawyer for Russian citizen Alexander Alexandrov detained in Ukraine’s Luhansk region, has articulated the stance of Russian Embassy consul Alexei Gruby, who said that Alexandrov and another detained Russian man, Yevgeny Yerofeyev, are ‘mercenaries and ‘policemen of the LPR’, the self-proclaimed Luhansk People’s Republic, Interfax Ukraine reports.

Kravchuk told TSN television station that he and his colleague Oksana Sokolovskaya had met with the Russian consul on May 28.

“According to Gruby, Russia’s official position today is that these servicemen, whose contract [with the Russian Armed Forces] expired in December 2014, are mercenaries and have nothing to do with the army,” Kravchuk said, according to the TSN report.

According to the report, Gruby also confirmed that he would visit Alexandrov and Yerofeyev at the hospital and would try to get in touch with their families. The consul also promised to do everything possible to help their relatives come to Kyiv.


On May, 16 Ukrainian soldiers (92nd brigade and battalion ‘Aydar’) detained a group of Russian subversives near the town of Shchastya in eastern Ukraine. The Russians were trying to seize a strategic bridge close to a CHP in Luhansk. The ambush resulted in capturing Captain Yevgeny Yerofeyev, a group commander of the 3rd Special Operations brigade, and Sergeant Alexander Alexandrov, a deputy group commander. While being interrogated, the both admitted their being in the Russian army.

Later the Defense  Ministry announced that special forces soldiers Alexandrov and Yerofeyev ‘were not members of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation’., following Interfax Ukraine

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