KEY POINTS

  • The parent of a Russian soldier said falling and fracturing an arm could get him taken out of the war
  • Similar accounts of Russian soldiers fleeing the war have been reported over the past weeks
  • At least 79 soldiers from Russia's 11th Separate Air Assault Brigade have reportedly fled the war

The parents of Russian soldiers who were deployed in Ukraine are now advising their sons to break their arms and legs to help escape the war. This is according to new audio intel released by Ukraine.

The Security Service of Ukraine (SSU) on Wednesday released a recording of two intercepted phone calls between Russian soldiers and their parents. In the first phone call, the father of a soldier, whose identity was not revealed, advised his son to break a limb after learning that a personnel from the same unit was dismissed from service due to a broken leg.

“Break something, Dimka. F**king fall, f**cking hit something. Hit your head. F**k it, we’ll treat you here,” the soldier’s father said. “Fall somehow, sloppily, to...screw it. If you break an arm, break an arm. If you break a leg, break a d**n leg.”

In the second phone call, a parent was recorded giving the soldier advice on how to break an arm to escape the war, noting that fracturing an arm could get him taken off the warzone.

“You wrap a towel or some rag around your arm. Make it wet. Go to a corner and f**king hit the corner with your arm. It hurts less when it's wrapped. And the bones break,” the parent is heard explaining to the soldier.

“You’ll say that you tripped and f**king leaned on your hand, something cracked and you can’t do anything.”

The SSU did not reveal when or where the phone calls were intercepted. It was also unclear whether the people in the first recording are the same people in the second audio.

The recordings are the latest in a string of reports about Russian soldiers fleeing or planning to flee the war. Earlier this week, 20-year-old Russian Corporal Ilya Kaminsky from the 11th Separate Air Assault Brigade revealed that he and 78 soldiers from his brigade had fled the war.

“I'm morally exhausted. There is absolutely no trust in the authorities and the higher command, from the very first word,” Kaminsky told the Current Time in a phone interview, noting that Russian military leaders have ordered for some of the 78 soldiers to be held in a makeshift brig.

Kaminsky added that around 1,000 people from his brigade have either been killed or wounded in action.

The anti-war Free Buryatia Foundation, formed by ethnic Buryats, also told Russian independent media outlet MediaZona that 17 Russian servicemen who were deployed to the war in Ukraine were allegedly locked up by the country's defense ministry for refusing to participate in the invasion. The detainees were also allegedly threatened to be deployed to “combat assault squadrons,” units that typically lead an attack and see the heaviest casualties.

A Russian soldier
Representation. A Russian soldier stands guard at the Luhansk power plant in the town of Shchastya. ALEXANDER NEMENOV/AFP via Getty Images
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