High-wage lures – Russia is recruiting more and more foreigners as soldiers

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Russia is recruiting migrants from Central Asia and people in neighboring countries as soldiers for the war against Ukraine. “There are at least six million Central Asian migrants in Russia whom the Kremlin is likely to see as potential recruits,” the British defense ministry said. Russia attracts with high salaries.

Internet users in Kazakhstan began popping up ads promising a large down payment if they joined the Russian army, Reuters news agency reported in early August. The ads clearly targeted Kazakhs: they showed the Russian and Kazakh flags with the slogan “shoulder to shoulder”.

Russia has been posting such ads in Kazakhstan, Armenia and other neighboring Central Asian countries since late June, the defense ministry said in London on Sunday. You lure with a deposit of 495,000 rubles (currently 4750 euros) and a monthly wage from 190,000 rubles. That is considerably more than the average wage.

“Increasing Losses”
Exploiting foreigners allows the Kremlin to recruit additional personnel for its war effort despite increasing casualties. Russia’s goal is to prevent another unpopular mobilization before the presidential election scheduled for 2024.

Since May 2023 at the latest, migrants from Central Asia have been recruited into Russia with promises of high wages and accelerated Russian citizenship, the UK ministry said. There is also coercion: in the occupied southern Ukrainian city of Mariupol, Uzbek construction workers were forced to join the Russian army. Millions of Uzbek, Tajik and Kyrgyz migrant workers reside in Russia.

Countries warn citizens against recruitment
Already with the partial mobilization in September 2022, Russian authorities had stepped up their efforts to hire “volunteers”. Soon after, the governments of the Central Asian countries of Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan warned that civilians fighting in a foreign military conflict could face legal problems at home.

In May, a local man in Kyrgyzstan was sentenced to 10 years in prison for joining pro-Russian forces in Ukraine’s breakaway region of Luhansk.

Source: Krone

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