Russian authorities claim the warship Moskva sank after a fire ignited the ammunition stores, but Ukrainian forces said they sank it with two Neptun rockets
Photo: Olesya Dubinina/Novaya Gazeta Europe)
A grieving mother of a missing Russian conscript serving on the sunken warship Moskva has been told by officials that her son and other lost sailors have been “burned to ashes”.
Brave Olga Dubinina has accused the authorities of lying to bereaved relatives and also “blackmailing” them into agreeing to compensation only if they sign a document confirming the ship was not hit by Ukrainian missiles.
Vladimir Putin’s flagship went down on April 14, but Russian authorities have so far only acknowledged one death.
The actual number of victims is estimated in the dozens and may number in the hundreds.
The angry mother lost her son Nikita Syromyasov, 20, on the warship but she is still awaiting an official report on what happened and confirmation from the Navy that he is dead.
“I don’t believe a single word, not a single word of what they say,” she told news agency ru.krymr.com.
“Regardless of rank, it’s all a complete lie.”
Tortured parents and widows who admit their children died on the ill-fated Moskva River are being denied documentation needed for compensation, she said.
“We were told this would only be given to those who sign a document certifying their son or husband was killed as a result [an onboard] Catastrophe.”
This means the Russian version that there was an explosion and fire on the ship that led to the sinking – and not the Ukrainian and Western versions that the battleship was hit by two Neptun missiles.
“It’s kind of… blackmail,” she said.
When asked if she would sign, she said: “Of course not.
“What kind of statement is that? Death by disaster?
“I am not satisfied with this wording and I do not agree [this is how] my son has died.
“If they disagree, I say, ‘Prove it to me.’
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“Now they also say he burned to ashes.
“The new version is that they all [lost conscripts] burned to ashes.”
The distraught mother from Sevastopol said: “They only talk to us, they don’t give us anything in writing.
“There is a group that was sent to work with people like me whose sons and husband have disappeared.
“They say they’re doing some sort of search work, and then it turns out there’s no search at all.
“We think so because not a single body fragment has been found since April 25, which is ridiculous.”
Russia has reportedly reversed an official denial that the Moscow River was involved in the military conflict when it sank.
Aboard was a crew of 510, including an estimated 300 conscripts, although Putin said conscripts were not sent to war.
The most powerful Russian warship in the Black Sea, the Moskva is the largest Russian warship sunk in combat since World War II.
https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/mum-russian-sailor-killed-doomed-27178416 Mother of Russian sailor killed on doomed Moskva ship says he was 'burned to ash' in sinking - World News