The Russian anti-Kremlin militia said it plans to give Russian soldiers captured during a cross-border raid to the Ukrainian authorities in a video published on Telegram on June 4.
A pro-Ukraine militia made up of primarily Russian citizens, the Russian Volunteer Corps, claimed responsibility for the latest incursion in Belgorod Oblast, where it allegedly captured the Russian soldiers.
Earlier in the day, a video published on Telegram by the Russian Volunteer Corps addressed Governor of Russia's Belgorod Oblast Vyacheslav Gladkov, saying the group was willing to give him the Russian soldiers "as a gesture of good will," in exchange "for the opportunity to talk with him to discuss the current situation in the region and the future of Russia."
In the latest video, a Russian Volunteer Corps commander said that Gladkov failed to show up at the meeting place in Novaya Tavolzhanka, prompting the group's decision to give the soldiers to Ukrainian authorities instead.
"We have already decided the fate of these guys. They will be transferred to the Ukrainian side for the exchange procedure," said the commander.
The Ukrainian government denied any connection to the groups' operations in the past.
The Russian Volunteer Corps commander added that Wagner mercenary group founder Yevgeny Prigozhin was willing to agree to the conditions offered by the anti-Kremlin militia.
"If the governor does not control the situation in the region and does not know how many prisoners we have from his ranks, we will communicate with the decision-makers in Moscow," said the commander.
Prigozhin has previously engaged in public feuds with the Russian Defense Ministry. On June 2, he accused the Russian Defense Ministry of placing mines along Wagner exit routes from Bakhmut.