Putin says he “shares the pain” of the mothers of Russian soldiers killed in Ukraine
At a meeting with the mothers of soldiers stationed in Ukraine on Friday, Russian President Vladimir Putin reiterated that he shares “the pain” of those who have lost children and called for the “lies” about the war in the neighboring country to be broken not to believe.
“I want you to know that I personally and all the leaders of the country share this pain. We know that nothing can compensate for the loss of a son,” Putin told the soldiers’ mothers.
He added that Mother’s Day, which falls on a Sunday in Russia, comes this year amid a “sense of fear and apprehension” among those mothers whose “thoughts will be with their children.”
Putin made his remarks to women whom the Kremlin identified as the mothers of soldiers fighting in Ukraine and whom they met at his headquarters in Novo-Ogarevo near Moscow, most of them grimly.
Putin and the Russian authorities rarely mention Moscow’s losses in Ukraine.
This unprecedented meeting has taken place since the attack on Ukraine began, following weeks of criticism from relatives of conscripts mobilized to fight in Ukraine in early fall.
Many wives and mothers of conscripts accused the authorities of failing to adequately train and equip conscripts before they were transferred to the front lines.
“Life is much more complicated than what we see on TV or the internet. There is a lot of disinformation, jokes and lies,” Putin told the soldiers’ mothers.
“It’s always been like that, but with modern technology it’s become clearer and more effective,” he said, denouncing “message attacks.”
These comments come against the backdrop of laws enacted after the start of the war in Ukraine, which provide for severe prison sentences for anyone accused of spreading “false information” about the army or undermining the army’s “dignity”.
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