Sergey Shmelev, art teacher and artist, was recently mobilised by the Russian authorities to fight in the war with Ukraine. On 1 November, he was buried in Volgograd after dying in the combat zone, V1, a local news portal, reports, citing Natalya Shmeleva who has now lost her husband.
“We bought all the equipment for him. And the next day, 27 September, he was handed a draft letter. He immediately said that he would not hide or try to invent anything,” Natalya said. Shmelev left behind an 18-month-old son.
Photo: Sergey Shmelev, vk.com
V1 writes that Volgograd bid final farewells for at least 13 people who were mobilised earlier between 28 October and 1 November.
Every fifth mobilised person did not even make it to the frontlines, according to the data department of Novaya Gazeta Europe. The mobilisation in Russia has been underway for just over a month. Russian President Vladimir Putin and Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu are reassuring the public that it is over. However, there is still no executive order which terminates the mobilisation.
Novaya Gazeta Europe reviewed confirmed deaths of mobilised persons and found out there are more than 100 such cases (and it is a very conservative estimate). The Ural district is the leader in the number of such deaths. Every fifth person (23) died in the rear or during training. The average age of those who died among the mobilised is 34.
The Kremlin claims that Putin sought legal advice about an executive order which would declare the end of mobilisation. The Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov says that such a document “is not needed.” Meanwhile, Shoigu revealed that 87,000 out of 300,000 mobilised people had been sent to the frontlines.