• Saturday, July 13, 2024
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FG refutes reports of Russian recruitment of African students into Ukraine war

Russia threatens African students to join military or face deportation

The Nigerian government has refuted reports of Russian recruitment of Nigerian and African students into its military to fight in its war against Ukraine.

On Monday, news headlines reported that the Kremlin is pushing thousands of migrants and foreign students to join its troops in Kharkiv Oblast, where it launched a new offensive a month ago or be denied visa renewal and face deportation, according to anonymous sources as reported with Bloomberg.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs in an official statement on Thursday stated, “The Nigerian Embassy in Moscow is in close communication with the Executives of the Nigerian Students Association in Moscow, Russia and there has not been any reported case of conscription of Nigerian students nor indeed of other African students to fight in the aforementioned war.”

The Ministry advised to disregard such news reports and appealed to media outlets to “exercise due diligence in the line of duty by verifying information at their disposal before releasing to the public.”

The alleged report would not be the first reported case of prisoners, migrants, and foreign nationals being coerced into the Russian military.

Last September, the U.K. Defense Ministry reported that Russia was stepping up its campaign to recruit foreigners in neighbouring countries and exploit migrant workers for its war against Ukraine.

The decision will allow the Kremlin to “acquire additional personnel for its war effort in the face of mounting casualties,” the ministry said.

A senior Ukrainian official also reported seeing an increase in the number of foreign soldiers among their captured prisoners, identifying Africans and Nepalis as the majority.