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Russians offer abducted Ukrainian children 100,000 rubles for moving to Russian cities - The Independent

Only 2% of abducted Ukrainian children have been returned from Russia. 

Russians offer abducted Ukrainian children 100,000 rubles for moving to Russian cities - The Independent
Photo: National Resistance Centre

After the abduction of Ukrainian children in the temporarily occupied territories, the Russian occupiers offered them 100,000 rubles for moving to Russian cities of their choice, The Independent reports.

Journalist Tom Watling spoke to five Ukrainian teenagers aged 12 to 17 who have already been returned from Russia after their abduction. The children shared their experiences in Russian "holiday camps".

Some of them were held for at least four months in "holiday camps" in the occupied Kherson Region and Crimea, and three of them stayed there for more than eight months. They were returned thanks to the charity organisation Save Ukraine.

Thus, 16-year-old Lisa Batsura said that once a Russian official came to her class and offered each child 100,000 rubles "for moving to any Russian city" they chose. Some of them eventually agreed.

Ukrainian officials told reporters that about 20,000 Ukrainian children have been abducted by the occupiers since Russia invaded Ukraine in 2022. Almost a quarter of the abductees were orphans and children left without parental care.

According to the Ukrainian government, more than 70 camps for the forced "re-education" of children have been discovered, including in Belarus, occupied Crimea and even in the Russian Far East. 

Dmytro Lubinets, the Ukrainian Parliamentary Commissioner for Human Rights, told the newspaper that the Russians are doing "everything to block the return of tens of thousands of Ukrainian children".

"Since Russia occupied Crimea and parts of Donetsk and Luhansk Regions in 2014, all this time Russia has been deporting Ukrainian children and violating the rights of civilians. Then we had eight years of discussions about the return of children. Did we get any results? No," the Ombudsman said.

"The only real way to stop the deportation of Ukrainian children is to liberate all the occupied territories of Ukraine. We have no other choice," Lubinets stressed.

According to Children of War, a portal created to track Ukrainian children abducted by Russia, Anastasia is one of 388 children who have been rescued. Only 2% of abducted children were returned, only because their hometowns were liberated from Russian occupation. 

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