24 March 2022
by Pavel Chikov
12 National Guard officers from the Krasnodar riot police [OMON] have refused to serve in Ukraine
On 25 February Police Captain Farid Chitav, a platoon commander of the Plastun OMON company of the National Guard for Krasnodar region, and 11 of his officers refused to follow the order of the unit leader to cross the Russian border and continue on into Ukraine.
Since 6 February the OMON unit from Krasnodar had been in the Republic of Crimea where it was sent as part of training exercises called Backstop 2022.
The National Guard officers refused to execute the order on the grounds of its illegality. None of them had with them their passports for travel abroad nor did they have the intention to leave Russian territory, while their direct official duties were confined to the territory of the Russian Federation. None of the officers in question had been informed about being sent to serve in Ukraine to take part in a special military operation, nor about the tasks and conditions of this operation. As a consequence, none of them consented to do so.
In itself, illegal crossing of the state border is a criminal act under Article 322 of the Russian Criminal Code and illegal entry into the territory of Ukraine as part of an armed group is a crime under the Criminal Code of Ukraine.
The National Guard officers were sent back to Krasnodar, officially investigated and dismissed from service.
The National Guard officers consider their dismissals illegal and they have filed lawsuits to be reinstated in their jobs.
The plaintiffs are represented by the lawyer Mikhail Benyash. (https://t.me/benyash)
Translated by Simon Cosgrove