LUGANSK, December 21. /TASS/. Some Ukrainian army draftees have been abandoning their positions near Soledar in the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) or surrendering to Ukrainian security officials for fear of stricter disciplinary measures looming on the horizon, so they are anticipating milder penalties for now, an officer with the People’s Militia of the Lugansk People’s Republic (LPR) told TASS on Wednesday.
According to Andrey Marochko, Ukrainian servicemen are expecting a heavy crackdown against those failing to obey orders under Draft Law 8271 envisaging amendments to Ukraine’s Criminal Code. The bill should regulate "the specifics of military service amid a curfew or in combat."
"Ukrainian service people have been seen fleeing positions near Soledar. Without waiting for a tougher punishment for disciplinary offenses, some servicemen among those mobilized have been abandoning their positions or surrendering to military law enforcement officials," the LPR militia officer said. This, Marochko said, is how Ukrainian troops have been "trying to save their lives," hoping to be handed shorter jail terms "than those envisaged by the new Draft Law 8271," which, they believe, will soon be enacted by Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky.
On Tuesday, Marochko told TASS that the Ukrainian command had sent reinforcements to areas around Soledar in the wake of the recent advance of Russian forces there.