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Russian bloke shoots recruitment officer in bid to dodge fighting in Ukraine

A man shot an army recruitment commander in Russia in a desperate bid to avoid being conscripted to fight in Ukraine.

Video footage captured the brutal attack on Monday (September 26) in the city of Ust-Ilimsk in the Irkutsk region of Siberia, which saw a young man dressed in military fatigues fire at the official at point-blank range – causing other potential draftees to flee.

The recruitment officer survived the shooting but was left in a critical condition, regional governor Igor Kobzev revealed, before stating the attacker would "absolutely be punished”.

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“I am ashamed that this is happening at a time when, on the contrary, we should be united,” the governor added. “We must fight not against each other, but against real threats.”

The attacker has since identified himself on the social media platform Telegram as 25-year-old Ruslan Zinin, according to Reuters.

He reportedly claimed to have been upset about his friend being conscripted, prompting him to launch the attack.

A witness who was present at the shooting said the gunman declared "Nobody is going anywhere" before opening fire, and said the recruiting commander had given a “clumsy” pep talk for the men assembled in the office to go off to battle in Ukraine before the attack began.

This is the latest in a swathe of desperate attempts by potential Russian conscripts to flee after Vladimir Putin announced a partial mobilisation, meaning up to 30,000 more troops could be sent into battle including Russian civilians.

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In a similarly dramatic incident, a man was rushed to hospital after he set himself on fire to avoid being sent off to the front lines in Ukraine.

Video footage taken of the incident shows the man catching fire before running around as horrified witnesses watched on.

The man was reportedly heard shouting "I don't want to go to the front", seemingly referring to the front lines of the Ukraine war – as well as laughing and "behaving inappropriately", according to Russian news outlet YA62.

He was rushed to hospital following the event, where it was discovered that 90% of his body was covered in burns and he was treated with oxygen.

"Today our armed forces are operating across a frontline that exceeds 1,000 km, opposing not only neo-Nazi formations [in Ukraine] but the entire military machine of the collective West," said Putin.

"In such a situation, I consider it necessary to make the following decision, which is fully appropriate to threats we face."

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