Russia anti-war protests: what is group against Vladimir Putin’s ‘partial mobilisation’ order - who is in it?
Protests have broken out after Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that a partial military mobilisation will take place
Campaigners against Vladimir Putin’s plans to partially mobilise the Russian military have held protests across the country. In an address to the Russian public, Mr Putin told the public that reservists would now be called up to serve in Ukraine.
He also sent thinly-veiled threats over the use of nuclear weapons to those in the West.
His plans to call up reservists to join the fight in Ukraine has been met with some hesitation from the Russian public. While protests have been held, flights out of Russia are also reportedly selling out and jumping up in price, with residents anticipating a mass mobilisation in the future.
Here’s everything we know about the protests, and who is holding them.
Who is holding protests in Russia?
Vesna Youth Democratic Movement have announced plans to hold demonstrations across Russia against the call-up. On its website, the group said: “We call on the Russian military in units and at the frontline to refuse to participate in the ‘special operation’ or to surrender as soon as possible.”
It continued: “You don’t have to die for Putin. You are needed in Russia by those who love you. For the authorities, you are just cannon fodder, where you will be squandered without any meaning or purpose.”
The Vesna anti-war coalition also joined the call for people to gether in city squares to protest the partial mobilisation. They were set to take place at around 4pm UK time.
While the group has made a list of official cities to hold protests, it encouraged those in locations which haven’t been listed to “go to the central square”.
What did Putin say about mobilisation?
In his televised speech to the Russian public, Putin said that reserves would be called up to boost troops in Ukraine, saying: “We are talking about partial mobilisation, that is, only citizens who are currently in the reserve will be subject to conscription, and above all, those who served in the armed forces have a certain military specialty and relevant experience.” According to Russian defence minister Sergei Shoigu, around 300,000 reservists will be called up.
Additionally, Putin fired a warning to the West that Russia was willing to take additional measures in the conflict. He added: “To those who allow themselves such statements regarding Russia, I want to remind you that our country also has various means of destruction, and for separate components and more modern than those of Nato countries, and when the territorial integrity of our country is threatened, to protect Russia and our people, we will certainly use all the means at our disposal.”
Referendums have also been announced in Russian-controlled areas, with Russian-back seperatists set to ask citizens in Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) and the Luhansk People’s Republic (LPR), as well as Zaporizhia and Kherson, were to formally annex with Russia. The referendums are set to take place from 23 to 27 September.