Putin's meeting with mothers of soldiers turns out to be farce: women were selected from among staff of Russian-aligned governmental bodies

On 25 November, Vladimir Putin, the President of the aggressor country, held a meeting allegedly with the mothers of the military involved in the aggression against Ukraine; an independent news outlet identified the women who came to the meeting.

Source: Mozhem Obyasnit, the Russian news outlet

Details: Mozhem Obyasnit reported that, in particular, Olga Beltseva, Moscow-based official and member of Yedinaya Rossiya [United Russia] party, told Putin about the problems of the military. In actuality, Beltseva is the Deputy Director of the state budgetary institution Centre for Leisure and Sports Youth and a member of the Otradnoye Council of Deputies. As she herself stated on her social network account, her specialty is "providing social assistance to privileged categories of citizens".

Another interlocutor of the President of the Russian Federation was Yuliya Belekhova, the head of the Moscow Region Executive Committee of the pro-government All-Russian People's Front (APF). She also heads the Association of Heads of Councils of Apartment Buildings in the Moscow region. In 2016, she was included in the list of United Russia candidates for the State Duma [the lower chamber of the Russian Parliament], but did not pass.

Among the identified is also Nadezhda Uzunova, responsible for collecting humanitarian aid for the conscripts in the Ust-Abakan’s [Far East of Russia] organisation of Combat Brotherhood. "Nadezhda Uzunova was very worried because she could not list all the representatives of the business community who responded to the disaster," the news outlet reported.

The journalists also spotted Marina Migunova, the member of the Public Chamber of Orekhovo-Zuyevo, Moscow Oblast, engaged in collecting humanitarian aid for the conscripts.

Background:

  • Russia lost about 86,150 soldiers, 2,899 tanks and 1,895 artillery systems in its war of aggression against Ukraine.

  • According to British Defence Intelligence, the deployment of Russian conscripts to the war against Ukraine is "often characterised by confusion over eligibility for service, inadequate training and personal equipment, and commitment to highly attritional combat missions".

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