Recruitment campaigns in Ukraine and Africa/Middle-East

Like any organisation, the PMC Wagner sees its payroll vary according to its customers and the demand for mercenaries to be sent where the group is established or in the process of being established. Recruitment is therefore an indicator of expansion that can be monitored to better understand the activity of the PMC Wagner.

Ukraine: the main recruitment priority open to everybody except nationalities from NATO and EU countries

The VK page in charge of recruitment on behalf of Wagner published a series of posts indicating the start of a recruitment campaign for Ukraine.

Starting on March 1st, 2022, a campaign for Ukraine is launched (« the Near Abroad ») and is open to Russian Federation and DNR/LNR passport holders. Only Georgian nationals are barred from applying.

« To the general requests from workers, a security staff recruitment for the near abroad is open! » archive: https://archive.ph/lxT04

Since March 16th, 2022 the recruitment campaign is open to all except nationalities from NATO and EU countries.

archive: https://archive.ph/CW0dg

It is also mentioned there is no UAV position available with this campaign.

archive: https://archive.ph/ClcwH

Africa and Middle-East remain key

On February 24th, on the day of the war outbreak in Ukraine, the recruitment page announces operations in Africa are still relevant and will not stop.

archive: https://archive.ph/yH78A

Le 9 Mars, la SMP reprend le recrutement pour ses activités en Afrique et au Moyen Orient indiquant que ce n’est pas moins important que le reste mais demande plus de « paperasse administrative ». Les candidats sont recrutés pour des fonctions de gardiennage armé et pour assurer la sécurité de territoires. On March 9th, the SMP resumes recruitment for its activities in Africa and the Middle East indicating that it is no less important than the rest but requires more « red tape ». Candidates are recruited for armed guard duties and to ensure the security of territories.

archive: https://archive.ph/wip/lAJRy

Profiles and salaries

For Ukraine, the ideal candidate is between 24 and 50 with no military experience. « Specialist » candidates (understand with military experience) are accepted provided they have good health. Psoriasis with more than 10% lesions, all forms of hepatitis and HIV are not accepted. It is required not to have relatives living in Ukraine or relatives abroad outside the Commonwealth of Independent States to avoid pressure. Candidates are paid 240,000 rubles per month or approximately 2000 euros. This salary does not include bonuses.

For Africa and the Middle East, applicants must be between 24 and 45 years old with experience in law enforcement, military, special forces or business travel in hot countries. A demanding level of physical condition is required with specific race times.

Archive: https://archive.ph/wip/DCH7H

Candidates who are in debt, have been in prison for drugs or rape, are suffering from any form of hepatitis and HIV or are from Ukraine (the Donbass republics included) are not eligible to apply. Those with tooth problems, psoriasis, metal plaques in the body or who do not meet the physical requirements are also not admitted.

archive: https://archive.ph/wip/55iuM

Salaries start from 150,000 rubles or 1,255 euros per month and to this is added a bonus and a risk premium with insurance and support for accommodation and food. The work is in rotation with 6 consecutive months abroad for each rotation.

April salary slip for Wagner mercenaries in CAR for the May-December 2018 period – source: Dossier Center

A 2018 salary sheet for CAR makes it possible to refine the salaries paid by the PMC Wagner via its subsidiary M Finance since it distinguishes between salary paid in Russia and salary paid on « business trips » and positions. Salaries for some roles can be doubled, such as sniper shooting instructors, which goes from 300,000 rubles per month in Russia (about 2,500 euros) to 600,000 rubles abroad (just over 5,000 euros). We are therefore a long way from the starting salaries announced on the VK page.

While recruitment for Africa and the Middle East seems to target professionals with certain physical and military abilities, recruitment for Ukraine does not require military experience or particular physical condition.

A recruitment process in several steps…or not?

For Ukraine, the process to join the PMC seems rather simple. Candidates meeting all the prerequisites are invited to contact the numbers indicated on the VK page in order to obtain instructions for going to a military base.

For the far abroad, a longer procedure is in place with a questionnaire to be completed and returned to the numbers indicated on the VK page, then if the candidate is validated a file with a set of documents to be collected is sent to him. He must then go to a base.

A meeting point: Molkino

A post indicates that the closest station to get to the meeting point is Goryashiy Klyuch station.

archive: https://archive.ph/wip/9Xdtc

The station is indeed about half an hour from Molkino, a village known to host a training camp for the PMC Wagner

google map

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