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Russian forces in occupied Zaporizhzhia Oblast withhold medicine to residents who refuse Russian passports

by Rachel Amran and The Kyiv Independent news desk July 17, 2023 4:01 AM 1 min read
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Russian forces are denying Ukrainian residents under occupation in Zaporizhzhia Oblast access to discounted medications if they do not obtain Russian passports, the Ukrainian military's National Resistance Center reported on July 16.

Withholding medical services is being used as a coercion tactic to force residents in Russian-occupied parts of Zaporizhzhia Oblast to become Russian passport holders.

Residents are normally entitled to free and discounted medicine. Due to the new passport requirement, Zaporizhzhia residents are unable to obtain needed insulin, thyroid hormone, and other medications.

Three months ago, Russian dictator Vladimir Putin signed an executive order that set a deadline for applying for Russian citizenship in the occupied areas of Ukraine. Those who refuse and elect to hold onto their Ukrainian passports face losing their property rights, prison sentences, and deportation from their homes.

Additionally, Ukrainians who refuse to obtain Russian passports are often threatened with being forcibly mobilized into the Russian military.

Earlier today, Russian forces shelled Zaporizhzhia, cutting off electricity in one part of the regional capital city and injuring one person.

Ukraine war latest: US to formally allow European countries to train Ukrainians on F-16s
Key developments on July 16: * US to allow European countries to start F-16 training for Ukrainian pilots * Military reports advancing over 1 kilometer southeast * Russian forces strike Kharkiv, killing 1, injuring at least 3 * Explosions reported in occupied Sevastopol, Luhansk, Berdiansk, Mar…
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