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Military Unit to Pay 250,000 Roubles for Death of Soldier

Source: (info), 18/09/12

· Military  · Tatarstan

Kirovsky district court in Kazan has ordered military unit No. 3730 to pay 250,000 roubles to Nikolai Berbin, whose son died in the summer of 2009 because of an assault by a drunken warrant officer.

The court dismissed the military unit’s argument that the soldier’s father should claim compensation from the warrant officer.

“On 12th June 2009 on the premises of Kazan gunpowder factory,” Kazan Human Rights Centre says on its website, “a drunken warrant officer Anatoly Fedotov demanded that Alexander Berbin put a gas mask on and, wearing the mask, made him carry furniture out from a watch room, allegedly to “acquire fire-fighting skills.” After a while Alexander took the gas mask off, but this made the drunken officer angry and he demanded that his subordinate take a “press-up position.” Berbin refused to do it. Fedotov then took him round the corner of the watch room and hit him several times, which included “kicks with his heavy boots”.

According to the inquest, Aleksandr Berbin committed suicide because of the injuries and the violent treatment he had received, shooting himself with a Kalashnikov machine gun.

“Aleksandr was my hope and my support,” Kazan Human Rights Centre, whose lawyer represented Nikolai Berbin in court, cites the words of the father of the dead soldier. “What can be said about a parent who has lost his son in peace time? His death has been a stab in the back, it has crippled me, ruined my health, deprived me of a future”.

In 2011 the warrant officer Fedotov was sentenced to 4 years in a general regime penal colony.