70 women travelling from Belgorod to Luhansk to find husbands

By Will Stewart


  • The women from Kursk region (Russia) accused army chiefs of abandoning their spouses
  • They said a commander had ‘tied solders’ hands and feet’ and forced them into battle
  • One wife said the men had been ‘hiding under the corpses’ of their comrades

Daily Mail (12.11.2022) – https://bit.ly/3UBlAuI – Up to 70 women set off on foot from Belgorod to occupied Luhansk region in search of their spouses following a ‘massacre’ blamed on inept senior officers.

Some of the wives reached the men – who have pulled back from the frontline – and confronted commanders who have so far refused to permit them to leave the war zone.

The women from Kursk region walked and hitched lifts, some travelling for a week, to accuse army chiefs of abandoning their husbands after ‘only around 30 men survived’ from one group of 200 men.

‘We won’t leave them,’ a woman is heard telling an officer in Starobelsk.

‘We don’t trust you anymore.’

Not all the men made it out of the killing zone, with some hiding in abandoned houses in Golubovka, it was reported.

The women have complained to military prosecutors at how one commander named Samvel Yurievich ‘tied the soldiers’ hands and feet, and put weapons to their heads, forcing them to go into battle, calling them cowards’.

They also said that the men were fired on by their own artillery.

At the reunion with the wives, an officer is heard telling the men with the women present: ‘I’m saying one more time, I have an order to deliver [you] to an assembly point where you will be talked to.

TV Rain reported that the battalion commander ‘forced those who returned from the shelling to go back into battle’.

‘The women complained to the military prosecutor’s office, but they were told there that their husbands would not be taken out.’

One wife called Anna said the men had been ‘hiding under the corpses [of comrades] so they wouldn’t be found.

‘There were a lot of wounded people there, they walked through the forest, carrying the wounded’.

Earlier the defiant women had been seen walking towards the frontline.

One wife, Svetlana Gorbatenko, who is pregnant, said: ‘We have very bad weather.

‘We are already frozen, and with fog, but we will move, we will not give up.’

The men are survivors from a notorious fight at Makiivka where up to 500 perished, it is believed.

HRWF Comment


The protests of mothers of Russian soldiers during Russia’s war in Afghanistan contributed to the withdrawal of Russia’s army and a few years later the Soviet Union collapsed. The current protest movement of wives and mothers who travelled for over 400 km from Belgorod (Russia) to Luhansk (Ukraine’s occupied territories) is worth being highlighted.


The news was first published by the Russian TV Dozhd (Rain) in exile since it was banned.


TV Rain is a Russian-language independent television channel. It was launched in 2010 in Russia, and since 2022 it has been based in Latvia. It focuses on news, discussions, culture, politics, business reports, and documentaries, with most shows broadcast live. TV Rain is owned by journalist Natalya Sindeyeva.


In March 2022, the Russian government blocked access to TV Rain in response to its coverage of the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine. The channel relaunched from studios in Riga, Latvia, on 18 July 2022. See more on Wikipedia in English (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TV_Rain) or in Russian (https://ru.wikipedia.org/wiki/Дождь_(телеканал)

Photo: The women from Kursk region accuse army chiefs of abandoning their husbands after ‘only around 30 men survived’ from one group of 200 men