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UK Defense Ministry: Moscow construction workers coerced into military service in Ukraine

by Martin Fornusek July 11, 2023 9:23 AM 1 min read
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Moscow authorities are most likely threatening to cut contracts with construction firms unless they provide enough "volunteers" to serve in Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine, the U.K. Defense Ministry wrote in its latest report on July 11.

The intelligence update said that one enterprise was set with a target of 30 recruits by the end of August 2023.

This decision is bound to primarily affect migrants from Central Asian countries and ethnic minorities from poorer regions of Russia like Dagestan, who make up the majority of construction workers in the capital, the report added.

According to London's analysts, this decision is most likely endorsed by Moscow Mayor Sergey Sobyanin as he tries to minimize the war's impact on better-off residents of the capital.

Both Ukrainian and Kazakh sources noted that the Russian authorities are targeting Central Asian migrants with recruitment campaigns for joining the military in Ukraine and even use coercion to fill up the military ranks with migrant workers.

The Kremlin also disproportionately targets poorer regions and ethnic minority communities, such as Buryats and Kalmyks, with mobilization efforts to avoid discontent in wealthy centers like Moscow or St. Petersburg.

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