Market Desk (online): More than 1,300 people have been arrested in Russia following call-up of extra forces to fight in Ukraine, according to independent human rights group OVD-Info.
Around 1,307 people were reportedly detained in 39 cities across the country as of Thursday morning with the largest numbers arrested in Moscow (at least 527) and St. Petersburg (at least 480).
Nearly 50 people were arrested in the country’s 4th largest city of Yekaterinburg while dozens were also detained in several Siberian cities.
Prices of one-way flights out of Russia surged after Putin’s announcement and images on social media appeared to show long queues at border posts.
As a result of this directive, all reservists who have served or trained in the Russian army will now be called up to fight for any future need for the army.
Vladimir Putin said in a speech that he ordered the mobilization of troops to protect Russia’s motherland, sovereignty, territorial integrity and people’s security. Army rally will start from Wednesday.
Those who want to blackmail us with nuclear weapons should know that the counter-wind can also be directed at them, he said.
He alleged that Western countries have shown that they do not want peace between Russia and Ukraine.
Putin’s speech comes as Moscow begins to consolidate its grip on Ukrainian territory in the east and south. They are planning to hold a referendum in the liberated areas of Ukraine to officially join Russia.