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Ukrainian general condemns sympathy for dead fraudsters

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Ukrainian general condemns sympathy for dead fraudsters

Citizens criticizing conscription efforts are playing into Russia’s hands, says Ground Forces Commander Aleksandr Pavlyuk

A senior Ukrainian military commander has criticized a section of the public and media for criticizing the country’s enforcement of the draft, claiming that dissent is tantamount to collusion with Russia.

Some of Ukraine’s male population risked a perilous swim across the Tisza River to the border with Romania in an attempt to avoid submersion, with dozens reportedly dying in the process.

In a social media post on Sunday, General Aleksandr Pavlyuk, who heads Ukraine’s ground forces, rebuked the reports “about poor people drowning in the Tisza,” arguing that any such sympathy undermines mobilization efforts. His comments also came after claims of a general unwillingness among Ukrainians to join the fight against Russia and a lack of volunteers.

Earlier this month, Ukraine’s border guard reported the 22nd drowning death in the Tisa River since hostilities with Russia began in February 2022. Separately, the service released images of officers beating and humiliating dozens of men after they were caught trying to be smuggled across the border.


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“Unfortunately, some of our citizens are no longer aware that their actions and public statements have turned into a powerful weapon in the hands of the enemy,” said Pavlyuk. He further accused “bloggers and free media” limiting public debate about mobilization “to the animal level.”

In addition to “moral support for tax evasion”, the general struck at “harassment” draft officials, claiming that many are disabled veterans who “went through hell.” Now they are marked by Ukrainian civilians “people catchers”, the general was furious.

Several videos are circulating on Ukrainian social media showing how the military uses violence against men when they are drafted. Pavlyuk claimed the clips were staged “taken out of context” and that any criticism of the draft officers “They deliberately fail to get to the main point: that it is illegal for men to shirk their constitutional duty to defend Ukraine.”

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The Russian military estimated Ukrainian combat casualties at more than 444,000 as of late February. Earlier that month, Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky claimed 31,000 Ukrainian soldiers had been killed in action, a departure from Kiev’s usual policy of not reporting casualties. Western media pointed out that the figure was much lower than US estimates revealed in a series of Pentagon leaks last year.

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