On 12 January 1942, Beria issued Prikaz No. 0083, “On the Organization of Detachments of Mobilized Germans in Camps of the NKVD USSR.” This decree came in direct response to GKO Order 1123ss and established the work and living conditions of the Russian-German labor army men sent to Gulag camps. The decree instructed the labor camps receiving mobilized Russian-Germans to provide them with living accommodations segregated from the prisoner population. In practice they did not always receive separate living quarters from the convicts living in the camps. The decree then ordered the incoming men be divided into detachments of 1500-2000 men, further divided into colonies of 300 to 500 men and finally organized into brigades of 30 to 100 men. The labor army conscripts came under Gulag discipline and supply norms for food, clothes and other goods. Special boards of the NKVD received the authority to try all cases of discipline violation, refusal to work and desertion among these men. Punishment for such infractions ranged up to execution by firing squad. In order to prevent such problems the decree ordered the various camp administrations with labor army detachments to organize a clandestine network of agents among the Russian-German inductees. The imposition of Gulag rations and administration upon the labor army had extremely negative consequences for the Russian-German conscripts. Their legal status and material conditions became almost indistinguishable from that of prisoners. This deprivation of civil and human rights resulted in the death and permanent incapacitation of hundreds of thousands of Russian-Germans.
N.F. Bugai, “Mobilizovat’ nemtsev v robochie kolonny…I. Stalin”: Sbornik dokumentov (1940-e gody) (Moscow: Gotika, 1998), doc. 39, pp. 62-64.