The law on the right of convicts to enter into contracts for military service does not apply to private military companies. This was stated by one of the initiators of the bill, Senator Andrei Klishas, in an interview with Parliamentary Newspaper. The bill passed all three readings in the State Duma and is now sent to the Federation Council for consideration.
Andrei Klishas’ statement that various PMCs will not be relevant to the provisions of the future law is already being interpreted in different ways. The first version: after the volunteer detachment signs a contract with the Ministry of Defense (as of mid-June, ten formations did this), it will actually lose its former legal status and become a new unit of the Russian army. The second version: the status of a volunteer detachment will be preserved, and the organization will be able to act separately, albeit with some restrictions.
This is an important point, since after the adoption of the new law, convicts will have the right to conclude a contract only directly with the Ministry of Defense. There will no longer be an option when Yevgeny Prigozhin travels around Russian colonies and recruits prisoners for the Wagner PMC. The question remains whether the convict will be able to apply to the conditional Akhmat detachment (which has already signed a contract with the Ministry of Defense) or he will have no choice and he will go to the regular army.
PMC “Wagner”, as Yevgeny Prigozhin said earlier, is not going to sign a contract with the Ministry of Defense. This means that access to Wagner PMC prisoners will be closed, says military lawyer Denis Koksharov:
– The law that was adopted, just concerns the conclusion of contracts with the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, namely with the Ministry of Defense. And therefore PMC “Wagner” really does not concern this law in any way.
– But the conditional “Akhmat”, which has signed a contract with the Ministry of Defense, will be able to recruit prisoners?
– Theoretically, it can, and at the same time there is a very interesting phrase in the law, which says that the contract itself is for military service in the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation. That is, those that are controlled by the Ministry of Defense.
– And the prisoners who were already recruited into Wagner, they, in fact, have already returned, are they no longer concerned?
– If they want to conclude a contract with the Ministry of Defense, that is, on their own, bypassing the Wagner PMC, then no one hinders this.
Senator Andriy Klishas, in response to a specific question about Wagner PMCs, said that the law under discussion does not apply to any PMCs. This is understandable: Yevgeny Prigozhin’s company is now best known to the Russian layman, especially after the protracted but successful battles in Artemovsk-Bakhmut. So much so that, according to a study by Romir, for the first time Yevgeny Prigozhin was in the top five in the ranking of public figures trusted by Russians.
Moreover, one can go further and assume that after the entry into force of the law PMC “Wagner” itself will no longer be able to take part in a special military operation. Franz Klintsevich, a former deputy, leader of the Russian Union of Afghanistan Veterans, told Business FM about this opportunity:
– There is no PMC on the territory of Russia. This is just a volunteer detachment, which bears the same name as a private military company registered abroad. And the fact that General Alekseev is holding today, so to speak, an event to conclude a contract for various volunteer detachments – they have always been under the leadership of the Ministry of Defense, but they are now being formalized. And the volunteer detachment of the Wagner PMC, if it does not conclude this agreement, will not function. This volunteer detachment will have no work, which, by the way, has shown itself very well.
– Perhaps, in the future, this detachment will not be able to take part in the NWO as a volunteer?
– As far as I know the legislation, if he does not sign, he will not be able to. But if, of course, the president takes some separate decision. And so, within the framework of how it goes, what is being done – no, it cannot.
By the way, there is another provision in the law that few people have paid attention to: the amendments increase the age limit for military service. Among senior officers – up to 70 years old, other military ranks – up to 65. Otherwise, there are no changes in the provisions. It will still be possible to call on convicts only during mobilization or martial law. And it will not be possible to attract those convicted under serious articles – for murder, terrorism, treason, espionage, crimes against sexual integrity.