Hundreds are arrested as Russian draft protests continue amid the Ukraine war.


Hundreds are arrested as Russian draft protests continue amid the Ukraine war.
An independent rights group has reported that hundreds of individuals have been detained by the authorities as demonstrations against Russia's new "partial mobilisation" continue nationwide.

According to OVD-Info, 724 persons were arrested on Saturday across 32 different cities.

Since President Vladimir Putin announced plans to enlist 300,000 troops to fight in Ukraine, widespread protests have erupted.

Russian law forbids unapproved demonstrations.

However, Mr. Putin's decision to enlist citizens has triggered widespread protests in metropolitan areas, with over a thousand individuals detained at demonstrations earlier this week.

One protester was heard saying "we are not cannon fodder" while she was being taken by police in Moscow, according to the news agency AFP.

I don't want to go to war for Putin, a man told reporters in St. Petersburg, Russia's second-largest city.

Natalya Dubova, 70, admitted to opposing the war and being "afraid for young people" being sent to the front lines in an interview with AFP.

Some of those detained on Saturday said that while in the custody of security personnel, they were given draft papers and told to go to recruiting centers. This week, the Kremlin justified the practice by asserting that "it is not illegal."

For individuals who are accused of neglecting their duties after being drafted, Moscow has also approved severe new penalties.

On Saturday, Mr. Putin approved new regulations that impose prison terms of up to 10 years for any soldier caught accepting a surrender, seeking to leave the military, or refusing to engage in combat.

Additionally, the president issued decrees awarding Russian citizenship to any foreigner who enlists to serve a year in the armed forces of the nation.

The edict avoids the typical requirement of five years of residency in the nation, which some observers have claimed illustrates how critical Moscow's soldier shortfall has grown.

Other young Russians continue to try to leave the country in order to avoid mobilization elsewhere.

The interior ministry has encouraged citizens not to travel due to Russian car lines that are more than 30km (18 miles) long on the Georgian border.

Nearly 2,500 automobiles were waiting at one gate, according to local Russian officials, who acknowledged that there has been a substantial influx of vehicles seeking to cross.

The revelation marks a shift in Russia's rhetoric after the Kremlin on Thursday called allegations of Russians evading conscription "fake."

On the Russian side of the border in Vladikavkaz, North Ossetia, a guy the BBC met with claimed to be able to see car registration numbers from all over the country.

He claimed that "our people don't have accurate information about the situation in Ukraine." Individuals don't want to go to war, is all I can say about the people I've been chatting with.

In the meantime, the number of Russians attempting to enter Finland has sharply increased.

The number of Russian immigrants entering the nation has more than doubled since last week, according to Matti Pitkaniitty, a Border Guard official.

The administration made measures to prevent Russian visitors from entering the country public on Friday.

President Sauli Niinistö stated to the official television that "the objective and purpose is to considerably lower the number of individuals coming to Finland from Russia."

Other close-by nations have already decided against granting sanctuary to Russians who want to evade the draft.

Foreign Minister of Latvia Edgars Rinkvis stated that "many Russians who now leave Russia due to mobilization were okay with killing Ukrainians." "They did not object at the time. They shouldn't be regarded as conscientious objectors, nevertheless."

In a move to increase its war effort in Ukraine, the Kremlin disclosed a number of jobs on Friday that it said would be excluded from conscription.

The "partial mobilisation" declared by President Putin on Wednesday would not affect IT personnel, bankers, or journalists who work for state media.

However, others have questioned the veracity of the Kremlin's assertions, and there have been stories of Russian males being called up by local recruitment officers despite not meeting the requirements.

A list of elderly and disabled persons who were told to report for service was shared to Twitter by Margarita Simonyan, the editor of the state-run media channel RT.

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