White House accuses Putin’s military of executing disobedient soldiers in Ukraine

Written by Jeppe W

Oct.27 - 2023 10:12 AM CET

Photo: Shutterstock.com
Photo: Shutterstock.com

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The White House has raised serious accusations against Russian President Vladimir Putin’s military, claiming that Russian soldiers who do not follow orders while serving in Ukraine are being executed.

These allegations come at a time of heightened tensions and ongoing conflict in the region.

John Kirby, the national security spokesperson for the White House, addressed reporters on Thursday, revealing that the United States has direct information concerning the execution of disobedient Russian troops.

“We have information that the Russian military has been actually executing soldiers who refuse to follow orders,” Kirby stated, adding, “We also have information that Russian commanders are threatening to execute entire units if they seek to retreat from Ukrainian artillery fire.”

These accusations are not the first of their kind. The Ukrainian military intelligence has previously released multiple audio clips, claiming they are intercepted phone calls of Russian soldiers discussing units turning on their own troops.

In addition, in November, the United Kingdom’s Ministry of Defense reported on the existence of Russian “barrier troops” or “blocking units,” which are said to threaten shooting retreating personnel.

During the press briefing, Kirby also commented on the low morale within the Russian ranks, attributing it to high casualty rates sustained during the fighting in Avdiivka.

Avdiivka, a city in the Donetsk region of Ukraine, has seen intense fighting and has been the focus of substantial military resources from the Russian armed forces.

The Ukrainian military claims that thousands of Russian soldiers have been killed, and hundreds of pieces of military equipment have been destroyed in the conflict. However, these casualty figures have not been independently verified.

The Institute for the Study of War, a think tank, acknowledged that the Russian forces had made some advances in Avdiivka but stated that it was unlikely they would be able to encircle the city.

Kirby’s statements during the press conference were forceful and condemnatory. “It's reprehensible to think about that you would execute your own soldiers because they didn't want to follow orders, and now threatening to execute entire units, it's barbaric,” he said.