Sentsov: All significant battles in Donbas were fought by Russian army

Oleh Sentsov, a Ukrainian filmmaker who until recently was imprisoned in Russia, has described his conversations with militants from Russia and from the Donetsk People’s Republic while in prison. They did not hide the fact that, from the very start of the aggression, all of the fighting against the Armed Forces of Ukraine was done by the Russian Army. Regular Russian troops prepared for the annexation of Crimea, Novaya Gazeta reports.

According to Sentsov, he met a soldier from Russia’s GRU in a court in Rostov when their cases were being considered at the same time. The Russian had been involved in the annexation of Crimea and the fighting around Ilovaisk, and had killed Ukrainians.

“I was interested to learn from him what had happened there. I was astonished that, as early as March 24, three days after the capture of the building, they had moved military boats from Novorossiysk to Sevastopol. The operational plan to capture Crimea appeared a few days later. And secondly – around Ilovaisk, he said that they did all the main things, they did not have contact with the militia,” Sentsov recounted.

This year too, all of the major fighting has been done by regular Russian soldiers, and not by local traitors.

“I saw a person who spoke directly about this. He had no reason to lie, because he was sitting in prison,” he added.

Sentsov explained that the Russian had been arrested and sentenced for killing a police officer.

While being transferred from prison, the filmmaker had the opportunity to talk to talk to two militants.

“One of them had fought for money, he was completely insane… The other was a homeboy, a Komsomol member, 21-22 years old. I asked him a question: ‘2014, fighting, regular army. How could you resist?’ ‘We had more of everything: more tanks, more Grads, more artillery. Of course, we could not be beaten.’ Where did all of it come from? He understood,” the former political prisoner continued.

Previously Sentsov said that Ukraine could not realistically have prevented Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014 because the Ukrainian military was not ready to defend the peninsula as a consequence of the demise of the army and intelligence department.

  Sentsov, Debaltseve, Ilovaisk, Donbas