Serbian nationals joining Russian military despite Serbian law prohibiting it

A YouTube video, recently posted by Dejan Berić, revealed the already well-known fact that tough prison sentences are not an obstacle for certain Serbian citizens to join the war in Ukraine.

The best example of this is Berić himself, who has been fighting with the pro-Russian armed groups since 2014. In the same year that Berić went to Ukraine, the Serbian Parliament amended the Criminal Code by making participation in wars abroad a criminal offence.

If a Serbian citizen takes part in armed conflicts abroad, the prescribed prison sentence is from six months to five years. The penalty for organizing the deployment is up to ten years in prison.

Several people have been convicted in previous years for participating in various armed conflicts abroad, and Berić himself is under investigation on suspicion of having violated this provision of the Criminal Code. Gathering evidence should not be challenging considering that he publishes his experiences from the front on his YouTube channel.

His last video reveals that the prosecution will have more work to do. Namely, Berić published a video report from a training centre located near Moscow, in which he interviewed a group of Serbian citizens who were preparing to go to war. Two of them did not hide their identity, while others did not want their faces to be recorded, precisely because of the possibility of criminal prosecution.

As for financial compensation, the military analyst, Radić points out that the President of Russia promised that the basic salary of soldiers fighting in the Ukrainian war will not be less than 3,000 euros per month.

“There is also a possibility of bonuses. For example, premiums are paid out for participation in assault groups or for each destroyed armoured vehicle. However, the question is what the payment of all those allowances looks like in practice,” Radić points out.

(Danas, 16.12.2022)

Photo credits: FoNet / AP

This post is also available in: Italiano

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