- Exiled Russian oligarch Mikhail Khodorkovsky has said that recruiting Putin in Ukraine could backfire.
- He said “big cities would end up in coffins” if Putin recruited soldiers from urban areas.
- The Russian government has I acknowledge To send young recruits to fight in Ukraine.
Exiled Russian oligarch Mikhail Khodorkovsky has said Russian President Vladimir Putin could face a massive political backlash if he continues to send large numbers of conscripted soldiers from Russia’s major cities to fight in Ukraine.
During an interview with Atlantic Council, Khodorkovsky thought if he thought whether Putin would send New waves of recruits to Ukraine after NATO estimated that between 7,000 and 15,000 Russian soldiers had died in the war so far.
The scenario is possible, he said, and that “the value of human life in Russia is not as much as one would like to see.”
“Especially when we talk about people who live in the North Caucasus, or people who live in villages and small settlements,” Khodorkovsky said. “Knowing this, Putin takes his soldiers precisely from those places. He pays this money for their death, forcing their close relatives to shut their mouths.”
On March 9, after weeks of denial, the Russian government I acknowledge It sent young recruits to Ukraine. Khodorkovsky was asked about the possibility of Putin sending 100,000-200,000 more conscripted soldiers to Ukraine, which he said would be a “very heavy” political decision for the Russian president.
“Without a doubt, such a step, if Putin had to take it, would be too heavy politically for him. Even more than that, he could call a million people, but then the big cities would end up in coffins,” said Khodorkovsky. The year is very different in terms of the value of human life, and for Putin that will be a huge problem on the eve of the transition of power in 2024.”
Khodorkovsky was a former oil magnate living in Russia who was imprisoned by Putin’s government in 2003 after being accused of financial crimes. During his nine years in prison, he asserted that he was imprisoned for political reasons. Since his release in 2013, Khodorkovsky has been an active member of the Russian opposition in exile.
In the interview, he said repeat His belief is that Putin believes he is “at war with the United States and NATO.”
In March, the United Nations said at least 1,119 civilians killing Russia’s war on Ukraine. NATO estimated that between 7,000 and 15,000 Russian soldiers died during the war, while Russia claimed that 1,351 of its soldiers were killed.
In his latest update on the troop deaths on March 12, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said 1,300 Ukrainian soldiers He died in the war.
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