The widow of Stanislav Matveyev, the 38 year-old Asbest resident and Wagner Group mercenary who was killed in the International Coalition airstrike in Syria on February 7, spoke to Russian media outlet Znak.ru.
“They just shot them like dogs, like lab rats,” Elena Matveyeva exclaimed.
Znak.com also reported that Matveyev’s widow received an audio recording, in which a male voice comments on the developments:
“Hi. What is being shown in Syria… In short, they routed us. In short, in one company 200 were killed, 10 in another. I don’t know about the third, but they were severely messed up. The Pindosy [Americans – Russian slang] struck. First with artillery, then they sent two choppers and fired on us with heavy machine guns. Aside from machine guns, we had nothing, no MANPADs to speak of. It was hell. The Pindosy were well aware that we were Russians… In short, we were struck hard. Our guys are now sitting at the base and drinking. Many are missing. Another humiliation. No one considers us… I think that our own, our government, is cutting the rear now, and nobody is going to make any response to this”. (This recording was published earlier on the Telegram channel WarGonzo.)
Elena Matveyeva was informed of her husband’s death on February 9 in a phone call from “colleagues from the Luhansk People’s Republic”, where Matveyev and Kosturov had fought for the militants between 2015 and 2016. It is possible that they were hired there by Wagner representatives for the trip to Syria.
“I received a call from our Ataman from Asbest. First he asked how long it had been since I had contact with Stas. I said that I hadn’t heard from him in three days. And the girls who have men there also didn’t know anyone or anything. Literally a minute later, the Ataman called back and said: ‘Stas and Igor are no more’. I was in a shop at the time. I dropped the phone, and there it lies broken now. I came home on autopilot, and nearly got run over by a car,” the woman explained.
Elena was not told the circumstances of her husband’s death.
“In the evening the Ataman called again. He said, ‘Don’t fret, they say nothing is known yet’. I began to find out about the bodies. I asked him to call in a priest, to give them a humane burial service when they arrive. Then the Ataman said that they should arrive on Tuesday, and they will call officially from Rostov. Whether this will be the case, I don’t know. All the Cossacks’ information is still coming from the Donbas. I don’t know how it all relates to them there. I’m still trying not to believe it all, I’m not getting ready for the funeral,” Elena said.
The body should arrive in Rostov (because they initially went there), after which it will be subjected to a DNA analysis.
The widow of Stanislav Matveyev also showed Znak a video which is meant to be the Russian soldiers’ final battle. However, the Conflict Intelligence Team, an investigative group, says that the video is part of a computer game.
“The wife of one of the killed Wagner mercenaries showed the news outlet Znak a video which was supposedly her husband’s final battle, sent to her by the wife of another casualty. In actual fact, it is a clip from a computer game which was published previously by the Russian Defense Ministry as a video of an ISIS convoy,” the report states.
On February 7, the US-led coalition forces conducted the strike against the Syrian militia affiliated with Assad in the province of Deir ez Zor. The U.S. coalition said that the blow was struck in response to an attack on the headquarters of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF). According to Reuters, at least 100 people were killed in the attack.