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Media: Estonia ready to help mobilize Ukrainian citizens if needed

by The Kyiv Independent news desk December 23, 2023 12:24 PM 2 min read
The Estonian parliament building in Tallinn, Estonia, on Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2011. (Simon Dawson/Bloomberg via Getty Images)
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Estonian Interior Minister Lauri Laanemets said Estonia is prepared to aid in mobilizing Ukrainian citizens if requested by Ukraine, according to the Estonian paper Postimees.

"We know where these people live in Estonia. We are ready to assist in bringing these people from Estonia to Ukraine, if they need it," said Laanemets, according to the paper.

He said 7,500 Ukrainian citizens of fighting age live in Estonia, but some of them are exempt from mobilization for various reasons.

The Estonian Interior Minister said he plans to officially notify Ukrainian authorities of the country's readiness to sign the necessary agreement to enable the process if needed.

The Estonian paper cited Janek Maggi, Head of the Border and Migration Policy Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, saying that Ukraine did not request help on mobilization from Estonia.

The statement comes as Ukraine's Defense Minister Rustem Umerov said he wants to recruit Ukrainians living abroad in an interview with German media outlet Die Welt on Dec 21.

Defense Ministry press officer Illarion Pavliuk clarified that Umerov spoke generally about the importance of joining the army for Ukrainians, including those living abroad, in a comment to the Ukrainian media outlet Babel.

There is currently no active discussion on the recruitment of Ukrainians from abroad, Pavliuk added.

Update: Umerov says he wants to mobilize Ukrainian men living abroad
Defense Minister Rustem Umerov said that Ukrainian men living abroad would first be “invited” to report to recruiting offices, but added that measures would be taken if they did not show up willingly.

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