The Kremlin maintains a policy of amnesty for militants in Ukraine
The Kremlin confirmed on Wednesday that it would maintain a presidential amnesty policy for prisoners who agreed to fight in Ukraine after the Russian press revealed the release of a man convicted of satanic and cannibalistic murders. Nikolai Okolobiak, who was sentenced to twenty years in prison in 2010, was pardoned by President Vladimir Putin and returned home in early November, according to the news portal. 76.ru From the Yaroslavl region where the person concerned settled and from where his crimes were committed.
This pardon and that of other criminals, like one of the accomplices in the assassination of journalist Anna Politkovskaya, has opened a frightening debate in Russia about the merits of this policy. However, the Kremlin, which was again questioned on the matter on Wednesday, did not expect any change. “The question is not new, it has been raised many times and now everyone is looking closely at this list of pardoned persons”Dmitry Peskov, Mr. Putin’s spokesman noted. “But I repeat, these are conditions [de grâce] Precision is connected with being in the front line and for a certain period of time spent in the front line, with participation in attack groups, and only after that there is mercy”He explained“No correction” of this principle.
In other cases the victims’ families have condemned the move, particularly as some families were not informed of the releases. Questioned on the matter in early November, Mr. Peskov supported these apologies, believing that “Individuals convicted of crimes, including those of gravest nature, atone for their crime in blood on the battlefield”.
Tens of thousands of Russian prisoners have joined the frontline in Ukraine, often under contracts with paramilitary groups such as the Wagner group. If they survive six months of fighting, they deserve forgiveness. These men often served in the most dangerous areas of the front and were used as cannon fodder, with the permission of Wagner’s late boss Yevgeny Prigog.
According to 76.ru, which claims to have interviewed 33-year-old Nikolai Okolobiak’s father, the latter was seriously injured and is now disabled. He and five other youths, all teenagers during the events, claimed to be members of a Satanic sect, were condemned for the ritual murders of four teenagers they chopped up before eating pieces of their corpses.
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