Two dead and many injured as heavy military vehicle ploughs into Russian troops in Siberia

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A contract worker reportedly smashed into a column of 20 Russian conscripts while driving a massive military KAMAZ truck. The incident left two dead, one of them dying on the spot, the other dying in hospital, according to the Russian Telegram channel Baza. Meanwhile 11 other soldiers were left injured. The horrific crash allegedly occurred in a training camp in Arkhangelsk, a region north of Moscow. 

According to Baza, Russian authorities are now investigating the incident. This has also been reported by Russian news outlet The news outlet also claims that the driver of the vehicle was a 22-year-old. 

The military prosecutor’s office of the Mirny garrison told that they did not give any comments. Meanwhile, the cause of the incident is not yet known.

Russian conscription has proven a hugely thorny issue for President Vladimir Putin. 

Shortly after the dictator announced his intention to mobilise hundreds of thousnds more men to fight in Ukraine, a young man reportedly shot a Russian military officer at close range at an enlistment office. 

According to local media, 25-year-old resident Ruslan Zinin walked into the enlistment office saying “no one will go to fight” and “we will all go home now” in the Siberian city of Ust-Ilimsk on September 26.

The military commander was placed under intensive care, while the attacker was arrested.

Meanwhile, protests also flared up in Dagestan, one of Russia’s poorer regions in the North Caucasus, according to AP. Local media reported that “several hundred” demonstrators took to the streets on September 27 in its capital, Makhachkala.

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More recently, the Russian Defence Ministry said that two men opened fire on soldiers at a Russian military firing range on Ocotber 15. 

The men killed 11 and wounded 15 before they were killed themselves.

The ministry said in a statement that the shooting took place in the Belgorod region in southwestern Russia that borders Ukraine. It said two men from an unnamed former Soviet republic fired on volunteer soldiers during target practice and were killed by return fire.

Shortly after Putin called the mobilisation, it emerged more men had fled Russia than had signed up for the draft. 

The Kremlin’s defence minister claimed on October 4 that over 200,000 people had been drafted into Russia’s armed forces – but a higher number of Russians had fled to Kazakhstan and other neighbouring countries within the same span of time. 

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Furthermore, reports emerged of men with no military experience of past draft age or with chronic illnesses receiving call-up papers, reigniting anti-war demonstrations within the dictatorship and spreading uncertainty about who would actually be forced into military service.

Putin acknowledged that mistakes had been made in the mobilisation, adding that they should be corrected. In a meeting with his Security Council on September 29, the despot demanded they “promptly correct our mistakes and not repeat them”.

He added: “Those who have been drafted without proper grounds must be sent home.”

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