The incidents happened near Tokmak in the Zaporizhia region. According to the Telegram channel, the men, belonging to the 2nd Company of the 3rd Reinforcement Battalion, 810th Marine Infantry Brigade, were “heavily fired on” near Robotyne. Your company commander then ordered the retreat. The men were evidently in the process of defending a trench system.
The soldiers were left behind “without communication, drinking water and food” – so it is said – and there was no evacuation of the wounded or dead. After heavy mortar shelling from the Ukrainian side, part of a unit was then relocated to to help the soldiers There were several injured and dead, 19 suffered shell shock.
Political officer rounds up and beats wounded soldiers
According to the men, the brigade commanders threatened to kill them or send them to a punitive battalion if they disobeyed their orders. Battalion commander Sergei Belashko arrived with brigade political officer Nikolai Botsman. Botsman would then have rounded up five wounded soldiers who had asked for a medical and beat two of them. One of the men passed out from the beating, as evidenced by an audio recording.
“Haven’t you learned to lose consciousness yet? How are you doing? Get up!” Botsman shouted. A war of words ensued between several men. One replied to Botsman, “I got two people out of there.” Botsman replied, “Shut up!”
Brigade lost 85 percent of its staff – videos show poor equipment
Eyewitnesses said Botsman handcuffed one of the injured soldiers to a tree and hung him there for about a day. He also handed the man a gun and asked the guards if they would be willing to confirm that he had been attacked. He had other soldiers dig a grave for the man. Belashko and the brigade’s chief of staff Vitaly Tervidis would not have done anything about it.
Botsman went on to tell the men that their company would be disbanded and they would be transferred to a penal battalion. He strongly advised the soldiers not to ask for a medical examination.
The 810th Brigade suffered particularly heavy casualties during the war. It reportedly lost 85 percent of its staff, including several senior officers. Meanwhile the brigade was replenished with mobilized men. Videos also revealed the poor quality of their equipment.