Russia tries to draft those looking to flee

President Vladimir Putin can’t enlist Russians in the military – so he’s bringing in troops for them.

The Russian military has set up two cross-border draft offices in a final attempt to recruit escapees Putin’s mobilization order.

At the North Ossetian border crossing between Russia and Georgia – where cars are backed up for miles – independent Russian news outlets reported a mobile recruiting center masquerading as a black van with a “military recruiting office”.

Another provisional draft office was reported along Russia’s northern border at a crossing with Finland.

Young Russians have been fleeing the country since last week’s announcement that the Kremlin was ordering 300,000 drafts into the war in Ukraine – where a frustrated Russian army has lost vital ground to a power Ukrainian retaliation.

A Russian man prepares to cook next to his car as he waits in line at the border crossing in Georgia.
A Russian man prepares to cook next to his car as he waits in line at the border crossing in Georgia.

Flights out of the country have been sold out for days, and long queues of Russians – on foot or in cars – are waiting to leave the country.

security forces Sent to the North Ossetian Crossing On Monday, fears arose that the Kremlin would close the border to military-aged men.

Instead, Moscow has turned to enlisting Russians wherever they can be found – even if it is moving out of the country.

Long queue of cars at the Russian-Georgian border
Cars wait in line on the road to the Verkhny Lars checkpoint on the Russian-Georgian border

Along the Georgian border, some Russians have been waiting to cross for several days. The regional North Ossetian government declared a state of “high alert” on Wednesday, and called for food, water and warming stations to be brought in for those standing in line.

The Georgian government said about 78,000 Russians had entered the country since the mobilization was announced.

The government of Kazakhstan, another nation that shares a large southern border with Russia, said on Tuesday that some 98,000 Russians had fled.

Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev said his government would aid Russians who had fled, and would not send drafts back across the border.

“We must take care of them and ensure their safety,” Tokayev said on Tuesday. “It is a political and humanitarian issue.”

post with wires

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