Russian troops in Ukraine have allegedly been coercing their own female medics into acting as sex slaves for high-ranking officers—and punishing them if they don’t submit to the twisted arrangement.
That’s according to a Russian service member who is back home recovering after she says she witnessed a string of horrors committed by her fellow troops.
In an interview with Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, the woman, identified only as Margarita, says female medics assigned to her regiment were coerced into becoming “field wives” for platoon officers—a job that required them to cook and clean for the men, while also “pleasing” them sexually.
Margarita says the medics were shocked by what they found when they arrived in Ukraine. “When we went there, no one, of course, knew what was going on. And when we understood, there was no turning back,” she said
She said she refused to go along with the arrangement, but then learned commanders had been ordered to “severely punish” her for the refusal.
“For a month I just lived outside. When others spent the night in tents and houses, I slept on the ground, near the road, in a small forest… They wanted to break me so that I would agree to sleep with [the colonel],” she said.
According to her, another woman who had been coerced into serving as the “field wife” to a platoon officer had been left permanently disabled after the officer drunkenly shot her.
“They arranged it to look like the Ukrainians had done it. He shot himself in the arm, as if he were [wounded] defending her, and after three weeks somewhere he returned back from the hospital,” she said.
Margarita said women were assigned to different units, “one for reconnaissance, the other for tankers, the third for infantry.” Other female service members had been forced to sleep with multiple men.
“They gave Alina away back in September. Just presented it to her as a done deal: You will be with this guy, he likes you,” she said of a colleague from her medical unit who had allegedly been “passed around” and never sent back.
After that, Margarita said, an officer had quipped to her: “‘We cashed in on Alinka, so let’s cash in on you too!’ But I looked at him in such a way that he immediately added, ‘Fine, I’m just kidding.’”
In addition to forced sex, she said, she’d also witnessed officers routinely shoot at and abuse subordinates. One common practice was locking troops who didn’t want to fight on the frontline in cold basements filled with rats—and leaving them there naked.
“They’d force them to dig their own graves. They’d dig a hole, and force them to lie down there. Then other guys, at gunpoint, would sprinkle dirt completely on top of them. Not even their heads were left out… Then the platoon leader or company commander would move away and shoot at random around the grave. Goodbye to anyone he hit, and anyone who survived is already crawling out of this hole like a fool,” Margarita said.
“They were sent to the front. Some didn’t return, and many grown men are still pissing themselves.”