Spread the love

Ukraine pushes men of fighting age to return home

Photo: Anatolii Stepanov Agence France-Presse Ukrainian artillery positions in the Kharkiv region

France Media Agency to kyiv

Published yesterday at 4:16 p.m.

  • Europe

Ukraine announced on Tuesday that it had suspended consular services for men aged 18 to 60 living abroad, in an effort to bring home forces to fight Russia .

The country, which has suffered a Russian invasion for two years, is in dire need of soldiers. Especially since kyiv expects Moscow to launch a new offensive in the coming weeks or months.

kyiv already prohibits men of fighting age from traveling abroad with a few exceptions. But, according to media estimates, tens of thousands of men have fled the country illegally to avoid going to the front. The authorities recently adopted a law on mobilization aimed at toughening punishments for recalcitrants. They also lowered the age of mobilization from 27 to 25.

In this dynamic, Ukrainian diplomacy therefore announced Tuesday in a press release “a temporary suspension of the reception of new files for consular services” concerning men aged 18 to 60 living abroad. According to this source, only the issuance of “identity cards to return to Ukraine” is maintained for this category of men.

The cessation of consular services, in particular renewal of identity documents and other important administrative procedures, could theoretically push Ukrainians to return to the country.

“The mechanism for updating and verifying information on the military situation of men aged 18 to 60 who are temporarily abroad is being determined,” Ukrainian diplomacy added. It specifies that “additional explanations” will be released once this intelligence work has been completed and that men whose military status is “valid” will once again be able to benefit from consular services.

It is not indicated, for the moment, what measures could be taken for those who are illegally abroad and can be mobilized into the army.

Also read

  • Russia steps up pressure on key city of Chassiv Yar
  • Several civilians killed in reciprocal attacks by Russia and Ukraine

“Duties towards the Fatherland”

Earlier, on Tuesday, the head of Ukrainian diplomacy had affirmed that imminent “measures” would be taken to bring back to Ukraine men of fighting age. “The fact of staying abroad does not exempt a citizen from his duties towards his homeland,” declared Dmytro Kouleba on Ukraine and those abroad.”

A number of Ukrainian personalities criticized the minister's announcement, deeming it ineffective, even illegal. “This will not force any man who has gone abroad […] to return to Ukraine and go fight,” Serguï Petoukhov, former Deputy Minister of Justice, said on Facebook.

Popular economist Serguiï Foursa denounced this decision on Facebook as “revenge” and “populism” on the part of those in power which, according to him, risks “dividing society” instead of organizing mobilization.

The head of the Ukrainian NGO Helsinki Union, Oleksandr Pavlitchenko, said that this decision would only harm the country's reputation abroad, calling it an “abuse of power”.

According to Ukrainian media, several Ukrainian consulates have already stopped agreeing to provide consular services to the men concerned. The state company Dokument, which facilitates the issuance of official Ukrainian documents, announced on Tuesday on its website that it was “suspending” procedures abroad for “technical reasons”.

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116