Roadblocks around cities will start appearing next week, military officer Nazariy Kishak has claimed
Ukrainian authorities will start erecting roadblocks around cities and between regions in the last week of December with the aim of catching draft dodgers, Nazariy Kishak, a military officer and former municipal council adviser, has claimed. He said that more recruits are needed to ensure the timely rotation of troops currently on the front line.
Speaking during his end-of-year press conference on Tuesday, Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky revealed that the country’s military leadership had proposed mobilizing an additional 450,000-500,000 men. The announcement came off the back of Kiev’s summer counteroffensive, which did not manage to achieve any significant territorial gains, while apparently taking quite a toll on Ukrainian forces. Top officials recently acknowledged that the push had failed.
In a Facebook post on Saturday, Kishak, who previously served at the Ivano-Frankivsk city council, alleged that starting December 28 Ukrainian authorities would start setting up special checkpoints around cities and between regions.
“We are getting serious about mobilization,” he stated.
According to Kishak, “the guys on the front line need to be replaced. Golden youth, kids of pretentious parents, bloggers, all who get caught – will go into the infantry.”
He went on to claim that officials at the checkpoints would be specifically searching for fake disability certificates, as well as documents related to custody over disabled relatives.
In an interview with Dnipro TV on Saturday, Ukrainian officer Vasily Samovar, who commands the aviation and air defense forces of the 3rd Separate Storm Brigade, advised Ukrainians to “prepare for total mobilization and a cold winter.” He predicted that the next year “will unfortunately be much harder than 2023 and 2022 combined.”
A day prior, Ukrainian Defense Ministry spokesperson Illarion Pavlyuk said on national television that the military is urging “people to join the armed forces voluntarily, without waiting for a mobilization summons.” However, “it does not mean that only those who want to serve will do so,” the official emphasized.
Earlier this month, Ukrainian Defense Minister Rustem Umerov told Germany’s Bild tabloid that all Ukrainian men of military age residing abroad would be summoned to recruitment centers. While German authorities were quick to stress they would not extradite Ukrainian draft dodgers, Estonia signaled its readiness to cooperate.
Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu has estimated that Ukraine has lost over 383,000 soldiers since the start of hostilities, with nearly half of those casualties sustained during its summer counteroffensive.
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