Kremlin thinks about mobilizing residents of Abkhazia and South Ossetia
The Kremlin is considering the possibility of mobilizing not only Russian citizens, but also citizens of the self-proclaimed republics of Abkhazia and South Ossetia for the war in Ukraine, a source close to the Russian president’s administration told Meduza.
According to this source, a few thousand people from Abkhazia and South Ossetia may be forcibly conscripted.
Most countries in the world consider Abkhazia and South Ossetia part of Georgia. Russia officially recognized their independence after the 2008 war with Georgia; the administration of these republics is controlled by the Kremlin. In 2022 the president of South Ossetia announced “legal steps” for “unification” with Russia.
The Ukrainian press has written about South Ossetian soldiers’ participation in the war. In March they reported that a group of South Ossetian contract soldiers refused to fight and returned home.
On September 21, against the background of a successful Ukrainian counteroffensive, Russia announced a mobilization. Russian authorities revealed a plan to conscript 300,000 military service members; according to unofficial sources, more than 1 million may be called up. At the same time “referendums about joining Russia” are ongoing in occupied Ukrainian territories; according to unconfirmed reports, the formal annexations of those territories may occur by the end of September.