Russian WAGNER POWs Confronted

April 4, 2023

Kyiv Post gets rare access to extended interviews of prisoners of war from the Wagner group – Mercenary fighters claim their intentions were good and that fighting in Ukraine is morally justified. All were taken prisoner around Bakhmut in January. According to their accounts, attacking Wagner units are suffering 80 percent casualties.


  1. I can judge, conclusively, that these POWs are really criminals and should be treated as such. They are not members of a regular army, but criminals who were hired into a mercenary group by an organized crime figure in a huge crime syndicate, fighting an illegal war. You really can’t get any more guilty than that.

  2. You can tell they are very steeped in rashist propaganda. No matter what they say they did, or believe, they volunteered for this. Was interesting that Stephan Korshak was able to debunk a lot of the wags version of events in the Donbas, since he served with the OSCE in the Donbas area. The wag did get one thing right however, that the war started in 2014. IMO no wag should be eligible for prisoner exchange, but a couple of them probably won’t be of much use informationally. However if exchanged there is a high likelihood that they would be returned to the front if they aren’t killed for being caught. Sounded like some are already familiar with prison and for them Ukrainian prison would be way better than what they experienced in muscovia. Being mercs Art. 47 of Protocol I of geneva convention concerning mercenaries states “1. A mercenary shall not have the right to be a combatant or a prisoner of war.” Definition of mercenary is as follows ” 2. A mercenary is any person who:
    a. is specially recruited locally or abroad in order to fight in an armed conflict;
    b. does, in fact, take a direct part in the hostilities;
    c. is motivated to take part in the hostilities essentially by the desire for private gain and, in fact, is promised, by or on behalf of a Party to the conflict, material compensation substantially in excess of that promised or paid to combatants of similar ranks and functions in the armed forces of that Party;
    d. is neither a national of a Party to the conflict nor a resident of territory controlled by a Party to the conflict;
    e. is not a member of the armed forces of a Party to the conflict; and
    f. has not been sent by a State which is not a Party to the conflict on official duty as a member of its armed forces.
    Source: Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and Relating to the Protection of Victims of International Armed Conflicts (Protocol I), 8 June 1977; available on
    For regs on mercs:

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