Putin orders partial military call-up, sparking protests

By KARL RITTER

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Police have arrested scores of people, including at least a dozen in Moscow, at protests across Russia against the war in Ukraine and the mobilization of new troops.

Human rights group OVD-Info reported that 97 people were arrested Wednesday. An Associated Press crew in Moscow witnessed at least dozen of arrests in the first 15 minutes of a protest.

Meduza, an independent news site written by journalists who left Russia, collected photos and videos from around Russia of small groups of people holding protest signs. It said people were arrested at many of the demonstrations.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. AP’s earlier story follows below.

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered a partial mobilization of reservists Wednesday, taking a risky and deeply unpopular step that follows humiliating setbacks for his troops nearly seven months after invading Ukraine.

The first such call-up in Russia since World War II is sure to further fuel tensions with the Western backers of Ukraine, who derided it as an act of weakness and desperation. The move also sent some Russians scrambling to buy plane tickets out of the country and reportedly sparked some demonstrations.

The Kremlin has struggled to replenish its troops in Ukraine, reaching out for volunteers. There even have been reports of widespread recruitment in prisons.

In his seven-minute nationally televised address, Putin also warned the West he isn’t bluffing over using everything at his disposal to protect Russia — an apparent reference to his nuclear arsenal. He has previously told the West not to back Russia against the wall and has rebuked NATO countries for supplying weapons to Ukraine.

The total number of reservists to be called up could be as high as 300,000, officials said. However, Putin’s decree authorizing the partial mobilization that took effect immediately offered few details, …read more

Source:: The Denver Post

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.