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Who are the Russian paramilitary groups that are fighting against Putin from Ukraine and are attacking in Belgorod

The Russian region of Belgorod It has been the target of drone and artillery attacks since Monday, as well as ground incursions by paramilitaries. Behind these actions are not the Ukrainian military forces. It’s about Russians seeking the downfall of the president Vladimir Putinand who have been fighting for that goal since Ukraine.

the one of Belgorod It is the most serious incursion into Russian territory since the conflict in Ukraine began on February 24, 2022.

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This Wednesday, the governor of Belgorod, Viacheslav Gladkov said that the attacks with drones that day they damaged vehicles, houses and public buildings. There were no victims.

Attacks in Belgorod. (AFP).

While between Monday and Tuesday, the paramilitaries attacked Belgorod with artillery and drone shots that forced the inhabitants of various towns to flee. Nine civilians who were injured remain hospitalized, three of them in intensive care, according to authorities.

An armored military vehicle in the Belgorod region.  (AFP).

An armored military vehicle in the Belgorod region. (AFP). (HANDOUT/)

A damaged house in the Belgorod region.  (AFP).

A damaged house in the Belgorod region. (AFP). (HANDOUT/)

The governor Gladkov he said there are 500 people in “temporary accommodation centers in the Graivoron district, in Staryi Oskol, Rakitnoye, Ivna and Stroitel”.

He added that the electricity supply has not yet been fully restored in some districts, particularly in that of Graivoron.

A helicopter flies over Russia's Belgorod region.  (Astrapress/Telegram).

A helicopter flies over Russia’s Belgorod region. (Astrapress/Telegram).

In Moscow, the Russian Defense Ministry said on Tuesday that Russian troops had killed all the participants in the raid, some 70 paramilitaries.

But the next day, the Russian Volunteer Corps (CVR)one of the two groups that participated in the raid, denied to the media that they had any casualties.

Who are these two groups that are attacking in Russia?

Its about Russian Volunteer Corps (CVR) and the Freedom for Russia Legion.

He Russian Volunteer Corps was founded in August 2022 by a far-right Russian citizen identified as Denis Nikitin. It is made up of Russians who have been fighting in Ukraine against his own country.

Denis Nikitin39, is a former martial arts fighter with links to Western neo-Nazi groupsaccording to BBC World.

He had a clothing brand and Russia calls him a “terrorist”.

In March, an attack in the Russian region of Briansk in which two civilians died.

After the raid on Briansk, Denis Nikitin told the Financial Times that his fighters based in Ukraine they demonstrated that they could breach Russia’s most heavily guarded borders.

Denis Nikitin, left.

Denis Nikitin, left.

“The main thing was to remind the Russians that they do not have to live in shackles, put up with and participate in someone else’s war by fulfilling someone else’s will”said Nikitin. “You can and must take up arms. We will support everyone who wants to remove these Kremlin usurpers from power, ”he added to the Financial Times.

Nikitin confirmed that 45 men were involved in the attack in Briansk and said many of them were part of an underground network based inside Russia.

In mid-May, a message appeared on the CVR’s Telegram channel stating that, despite their divergences, it had agreed with the Freedom for Russia Legion “Combine your efforts and engage in combat together”according to BBC World.

According to Reuters, the military intelligence agency of Ukraine says the TRC is an independent underground group inside Russia that also has a unit in the Ukrainian Foreign Legion. But the Foreign Legion says it has nothing to do with the CVR.

A video released by the CVR on Monday showed two men claiming to have captured a Russian armored personnel carrier. Reuters was able to identify one of the men as Ilya Bogdanovaa Russian citizen who received Ukrainian citizenship in 2015 after fighting for kyiv against Ukrainian-backed forces Russia in the east of Ukraine.

Members of the Russian Volunteer Corps stand next to an armored vehicle in this undated photo obtained by Reuters on May 23, 2023. (REUTERS).

Members of the Russian Volunteer Corps stand next to an armored vehicle in this undated photo obtained by Reuters on May 23, 2023. (REUTERS).

Andrei Goryanov of the BBC Russian Service said many of the participants in the recent attack on Belgorod left Russia long ago for various reasons and they are united by their disagreement with the government of Vladimir Putin.

Some of them are former employees of the company itself. Federal Security Service of Russiaindicated BBC World.

One of his fighters, known under the pseudonym “Fortuna,” told AFP in March that his group coordinates its actions with the Ukrainian army when it is on Ukrainian territory, and acts alone in Russia.

The Freedom for Russia Legion He assures that it was formed in March 2022 “by the desire of the Russians to fight in the ranks of the Armed Forces of Ukraine against Putin’s armed gang.”

Its emblem is a clenched fist and it is considered a “terrorist” group by the Russian authorities.

According to the AFP agency, its political leader is the former Russian deputy Ilya Ponomariovthe only one who voted against the annexation of Crimea by Moscow in 2014, and who later settled in Ukraine.

Former Russian deputy Ilya Ponomarev.  (Reuters/Alamy).

Former Russian deputy Ilya Ponomarev. (Reuters/Alamy).

Members of the Freedom for Russia Legion.  (REUTERS).

Members of the Freedom for Russia Legion. (REUTERS).

According to Reuters, the Freedom for Russia Legion Cooperate with the Armed Forces Ukraine and operates under Ukrainian command. Responsibility has been claimed for the attack in Belgorod and says that he has been fighting in the east of Ukraine.

“Inhabitants of the border regions! Stay at home, do not resist and do not be afraid: we are not your enemies. Unlike the zombies putin, we do not touch civilians and do not use them for our own purposes. Freedom is near!” wrote the Freedom for Russia Legion on your Telegram profile.

Also released a video where he calls on the Russians to fight for a Russia free of Putin. “We are Russians like you. We distinguish ourselves only by the fact that we no longer wanted to justify the actions of the criminals in power and we took up arms to defend our and your freedom. The legion returns home, ”he said.

The Freedom for Russia Legion He also argued that the country ruled by Putin is vulnerable to attacks, since “Russia has no reserves to respond to military crises. All military personnel are dead, wounded or in Ukraine.”.

CNN’s Sam Kiley interviewed a fighter calling himself Caesar in December as the group fought for Ukraine against the Russian attacks on the city of Bakhmuton the front line of the war.

“From the first day of the war, my heart, the heart of a true Russian, a true Christian, told me that I had to be here to defend the people of Ukraine.”said Caesar.

“It took me several months to finally join the ranks of the defenders of Ukraine,” added.

Members of the Freedom for Russia Legion.

Members of the Freedom for Russia Legion.

According to CNN, César is with his family in Ukraine and is one of about 200 Russian citizens currently fighting alongside Ukrainian troops against their own country’s military forces.

The Freedom for Russia Legion defines itself as a group of “partisans” whose goal is to build “a new free Russia.”

Its website indicates that the group has orchestrated attacks against Russian military and railway infrastructure.

As for their military training and equipment, former MP Ponomariov told British radio LBC this week that the Ukrainians “help us train our forces and provide us with the necessary equipment.”

On her Twitter account, the Freedom for Russia Legion He said that he has French RT61 mortars, among other weapons.

In the attack on the region of Belgorodthe Russian authorities said they had to deal with mortar fire, artillery and drone attacks, the AFP agency said.

Source: Elcomercio

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