Thursday, April 25, 2024

[PHOTOS] “This is just a military exercise, isn’t it?”: A heartbreaking farewell to the Russian reservists

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Cole Hanson
Cole Hanson
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St. Petersburg | They are not crying and seem to think that this is just a military exercise: the relatives of the Russian reservists who were called up to support the Russian offensive in Ukraine on Tuesday came to say goodbye to their sons, fathers or fiancée in Saint Petersburg (Northwest Russia). ).

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Ces gens, réunis devant un commissariat militaire de cette ancienne capitale impériale russe, se parlent à demi-voix en s’approchant parfois de la clôture séparant le commissariat de la rue, pour échanger quelques de les éserve les e quit les a son ‘the other side.

“This is just a military exercise, isn’t it?” A woman in her sixties asks her neighbor.

“I think, yes, military exercises, I don’t know, nobody knows, but they stay here in the back,” replied confidently Svetlana Antonova, 55, whose 27-year-old son appeared at the police station. After receiving the call last Saturday.

Nikita, a 25-year-old reservist, and his 22-year-old fiancée Alina, standing side by side across the fence, they all moved, tears in her eyes.

“I don’t know what to say, I am shocked,” Alina admits, without taking her eyes off her lover.

I was not surprised after receiving the summons, my relatives yes, but not me. Well, if you have to go, then you have to go,” said this young man who did his military service a few years ago.

Another twist of fate

For Galina, 65, and her family, her son-in-law’s crowd is “another twist of fate”: her daughter is undergoing treatment for cancer, and their son is only 12 years old.

“He works in construction. “In the army, he was the shooter at that time,” says Galina, holding her grandson Micah’s hand.

“How are we going to live now, if it is for so long, I don’t know,” she sighs.

“It is said that they will be sent to the military training base near Zelenogorsk,” near St. Petersburg,” Galina continues.

Have we thought about escaping from the mobilization? not at all. “We have nowhere to go,” she added.

Since the announcement of the “partial” military mobilization of reservists in Russia on September 21, tens of thousands of Russian men of combat age have fled abroad, mainly to the former Soviet republics of Central Asia and the Caucasus.

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