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St. Petersburg Mothers Concerned For Soldiers' Health

ST. PETERSBURG -- The nongovernmental group Soldiers' Mothers of St. Petersburg voiced concern today over the number of young conscripts who have fallen ill in Leningrad Oblast, RFE/RL's Russian Service reports.

The organization said young soldiers in the region do not have winter uniforms, proper medical services, or facilities. The solders' rights defenders said conscripts' relatives have complained that in many military units soldiers are still wearing summer uniforms, and in some cases medical departments in military units do not have heating.

Ella Polyakova, the group's chairwoman, told RFE/RL that almost 80 percent of the solders at Vyborg military unit in Leningrad Oblast are now sick. In some cases, she said, soldiers with a fever of 39 or 40 degrees Celsius are on duty.

The group said its members have sent letters to the Military Prosecutor-General's Office asking it to intervene in the situation.

Read in Russian here.