- Russia recently opened its first recruitment centre in Moscow
- The move comes as Russia faces significant battle reversals in Ukraine seven months into the war
- Putin has decided to toughen punishment for voluntary surrender and refusal to fight in Ukraine
Russia recently opened its first recruitment centre in Moscow, and the city's mayor Sergei Sobyanin announced that foreigners will be given permanent citizenship if a one-year contract to join the army is signed. The move comes as Russia faces significant battle reversals in Ukraine seven months into the war that shook the world.
“The Moscow government will deploy a full-fledged infrastructure in Sakharovo to assist the Russian Defense Ministry in the recruitment of foreign citizens into the military service,” The Moscow Times reported Mayor Sobyanin as saying in a post on Telegram.
Local authorities “will do everything necessary to make the signing of the contracts as convenient as possible,” the official statement said.
Media reports also suggested that President Putin has decided to toughen punishment for voluntary surrender and refusal to fight in Ukraine.
Russians are also leaving the country in masses after President Putin announced a "partial mobilisation". This means that a certain percentage of Russia’s potential fighters will be asked to join the offensive on Ukraine. The total number of reservists to be called up could be as high as 300,000, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said.
Putin told PM Modi at the SCO summit that his country too wants to end the war against Ukraine as soon as possible. The US now claims Russian authorities planned to mobilize more than 1 million recruits, which the Kremlin denied.
On Saturday, Russian forces launched new strikes on Ukrainian cities Saturday as Kremlin-orchestrated votes took place in occupied regions to create a pretext for their annexation by Moscow, while hundreds of people were arrested in Russia for trying to protest a mobilization order that commits more troops to the fight in Ukraine.
Ukraine's presidential office said the latest Russian shelling killed at least three people and wounded 19.