Russian flag – illustration photo.
Washington – Russia is holding at least 6,000 Ukrainian children in facilities in occupied Crimea and in Russia apparently intended for re-education, according to a study by the American Yale University, reported by Reuters. According to her, there are at least 43 camps and other facilities where there are Ukrainian children. The total number of children in them may be much higher.
“The main purpose of the camp facilities we have identified appears to be political re-education,” said Nathaniel Raymond, one of the researchers who say it is a vast network operated by Moscow since its invasion of Ukraine in February last year.< /p>
The children in the camps, of which the youngest identified was four months old, belong to several groups. Some were already in the care of Ukrainian state institutions before the invasion, others are considered orphans by Russia. However, there are also children in the camps whose Ukrainian parents are still alive.
In some camps, children already received military training at the age of 14. But the researchers found no evidence that any of them were later used in combat. But they found that some of the children were eventually moved to foster or adoptive parents in Russia.
According to Raymond, it seems that the system of camps and adoption of Ukrainian children was approved by the highest places in the Russian government, starting with President Vladimir Putin.< /p>
The Russian Embassy in Washington said the country is accepting children who were forced to flee Ukraine and is trying to do everything possible to place them with families.
Research by an American university is part project that deals with human rights violations by Russia. The project is supported by the US Department of State.