The apparatus of repression and Russian propaganda managed to calm the internal moods in the country during almost all seven months of war in Ukraine. But since Vladimir Putin announced last week the mobilization of 300 thousand reservists for the escalation of the conflict, demonstrations take over the country – some of them, radical. This week, one man shot an officer recruiting new soldiers, another set himself on fire and more than 98 a thousand Russians have already fled the country.
The gigantic lines of cars for almost a week, forming traffic jams on the borders of Georgia, Finland or Kazakhstan, denounce the popular disapproval of the Russian president’s decisions. The movement was so great that Russia announced that it will close the borders to men of military age.
The government of Kazakhstan announced this Tuesday (27) what 57 a thousand Russians have made the crossing in the last few days. The lines of cars are so long at the border that some people have abandoned their vehicles and walked. It is also estimated that about 36 men arrived in Tbilisi, capital of Georgia. Despite the country having declared that it will receive the fugitives, the movement has caused discomfort to the local population, which has a history of separatist struggle with Moscow.
“The concern with this flow is great. , the massive influx of Kremlin operatives. Most here have no sympathy for those people who have not spoken out against the war in Ukraine, and whose thoughts on the misfortunes the Kremlin has been inflicting on Georgia since 1991 are unknown”, explained political scientist Kornely Kakachia to the French newspaper Le Figaro.
Western sources doubt of the Russian army’s ability to provide the new troops with the necessary training and equipment, while tens of thousands of draft sheets have already been sent to the Kremlin.
27165449“The haste with which Russia began its mobilization suggests that many of the recruits will be sent to the front lines with minimal preparation. They will undoubtedly suffer heavy losses,” the British Defense Ministry said.
In Ust Ilinsk, Siberia, a young reservist shot the head of the recruitment centre, seriously wounding him before being stuck. In Ryazan, in the west of the country, a young man set himself on fire. “These are isolated events, but sooner or later the discontent will turn into a mass movement,” predicted opposition deputy Dmitry Gudkov.
In several regions of the Russian Federation, especially in those that are anti-Moscow, summoned men and family members have demonstrated against this mobilization. Nearly 2,500 people were arrested during the protests.
This amounts to an “arbitrary deprivation of liberty”, as UN spokeswoman Ravina Shamdasani told reporters in Geneva on Tuesday. “We call for the immediate release of all those arbitrarily detained and for the authorities to fulfill their international obligations to respect and guarantee the rights to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly,” declared Shamdasani.