Helsinki Citizens' Assembly-Vanadzor

The threats against the Russian deserters

April 8, 2024

Media about us

Below is HCAV chairman Artur Sakunts's interview to the Sverige radio.


A deserter from the war in Ukraine is murdered in Alicante. Another is kidnapped by the security service FSB in Armenia. Leaving Putin's army seems to be associated with mortal danger. Still, thousands take the risk. Why?


At the beginning of the year 2024, the news came that a Russian deserter had been murdered in southern Spain. Spanish journalists have intelligence sources who suspect it is a Kremlin-ordered assassination. Just a few months earlier, a Russian deserter is kidnapped in Armenia, the human rights activist who investigated the disappearance finds links to the FSB security service.


- When I asked on what grounds they do it then, he said that there is a direct order from Putin that all deserters must be handed over to Russia, says Artur Sakunts, human rights activist in Armenia.


Conflict catches up with a Russian deserter who first went underground and went into hiding in Russia after being forced to leave the war temporarily due to an injury. We get an insight into the escape to Finland, where he has today applied for asylum. One who was not granted asylum is the Russian Wagner soldier who deserted and made his way to Norway under dramatic circumstances. It recently became clear that Wagner deserter Andrei Medvedev had his asylum application rejected, on the grounds that Wagner was not part of the regular Russian forces in Ukraine during the time he participated in the war. Something that his lawyer strongly disputes.


Participants: "Alex" , Russian deserter in Finland, Ivan Chuviliaev , the organization Idite Lesom that helps Russian deserters, Rafa Burgos , journalist at the newspaper El Pais in Alicante,  Brynjulf ​​Risnes , lawyer for the Wagner deserter Andrei Medvedev in Norway, Jan Espen Kruse , Norwegian foreign reporter at NRK, Artur Sakunts , human rights activist in Armenia, Oscar Jonsson , PhD in Russian warfare at the Defense Academy


Program manager: Fernando Arias

Technician: Stina Fagerberg

Interpreter: Naufal Alizade

Producer: Anja Sahlberg

views: 43

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