Andrei Medvedev is a 26-year-old, former commander of the Wagner Russian mercenary army, who defected after crossing the Russian-Norwegian border in January. The young Russian jumped the barbed wire fences, evaded a border patrol with dogs, dodged the shots of the border guards, then ran through the forest and crossed a frozen river.
His story made headlines around the world, being a rare example of a Russian commander defecting to a Western country. At the time, Medvedev said he sought political asylum in Norway because he feared for his life after witnessing the killing and mistreatment of Russian prisoners recruited by the mercenary group to fight in Ukraine.
“Recently I decided that I am ready to return to the Russian Federation. I contacted the Russian embassy in Oslo for help, to facilitate my return. I hoped that I would find peace and calm here, that I could leave behind all the politics, the war, army, but somehow I didn’t manage. We’ll see what would happen in Russia. If they kill me, fine. If not, thank you very much. If I live, thank you even more,” Medvedev said on his YouTube channel .
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