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Human Rights Activists Record Mass Departure of Residents of Occupied Areas of Donbas For Work in Russia

ORDLO occupied Donbas

Residents of the occupied areas of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions massively leave for work in Russia, the Eastern Human Rights Group informs on its Facebook page.

The active process is associated with several factors, including:

  • Opening of the summer season in the south of the Russian Federation, where residents of certain areas of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions (CADLR) are invited to work as general service staff.
  • Beginning of work shift. Many CADLR residents work in Russia on a shift basis for three months. They return to CADLR for the May holidays and the Low Sunday and now leave again.
  • Currently, to apply for a job in the Russian Federation, one needs a passport of the Russian Federation (or at least a passport of the illegal armed formation “Luhansk People’s Republic”). However, to get a passport of the Russian Federation in CADLR, one needs to stand in line. Passport centres did not work in connection with the May holidays and the days of illegal armed formations “Luhansk People’s Republic” and “Donetsk People’s Republic,” so a considerable waiting list has been formed.
  • CADLR residents work in Russia not only at coal mines, but also in plantations, in hotels, at construction sites, and as security guards.

“Currently, the occupation administrations of the Russian Federation in CADLR are trying to use all the levers of influence to make the working population have a job in the Russian Federation,” the human rights activists stressed.

In addition, the Eastern Human Rights Group reports that Russian party campaign headquarters are already being formed in the occupied territories of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions to ensure participation in September elections to the Russian State Duma.

“To date, they have issued more than 600,000 passports to the electorate there. Of these 635,000, 30% will not vote for sure; this is a classic of the genre. Another 100,000-120,000 are minors. Such a quantitative moment remains,” said Pavlo Lysyansky, human rights activist and founder of the Eastern Human Rights Group.

Experts believe that opening of Russian polling stations in the territory of Ukraine without the consent of Kyiv is a direct violation of international law and the Kremlin’s attempt to further expand its influence in the CADLR.

Meanwhile, spokesperson of the Ukrainian delegation to the Trilateral Contact Group (TCG) Oleksiy Arestovych said that the vote of residents of certain areas of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions in the State Duma elections would be a basis for extending and even strengthening sanctions against Russia.

Arestovych stressed that the very fact of issuance of Russian passports to Ukrainian citizens living in CADLR was “an explicit violation of Ukrainian law.”

Bohdan Marusyak

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