Remember the soldier who embarrassed commanders by disappearing from his unit and turning up in Georgia? A further report from Reuters documents the Russian military stating that the soldier, Alexander Glokhov, will not be punished if he gives himself up. The disappearing act has been referenced as a public relations coup for the pro-Western government in Tblisi, and I would therefore be wary of the word of the Russian military and would be skeptical of Glokhov’s employment and certainly his safety, should he choose to return.
“Russia’s military command has no disciplinary complaints against sergeant Glokhov, and if he returns to Russia he will continue his service, but in a different unit.” Colonel Igor Konashenkov, aide to the commander of Russia’s Ground Forces, told Reuters.
Georgia paraded the 21-year-old sergeant in January, shortly after he disappeared from his unit in South Ossetia.
Dressed in jeans and trainers and eating a “Big Mac” hamburger, Glukhov told Reuters at a McDonald’s outlet in Tblisi last month he had asked for asylum in Georgia, saying conditions with Russian forces in South Ossetia were unbearable.
The Russian army had earlier accused Georgia of blocking Glukov’s return, saying he could face prosecution as a deserter.