July 24, 2023

Taken from Home to Belarus


Taken from Home to Belarus
Mario Azzi, Unsplash.

Children from the Ukrainian territories annexed by Russia are being sent to Belarusian "health" camps. However, not all of these children make it back home and instead become untraceable, reports independent media outlet Dozhd.

“They have disappeared, that is, their trace was lost on the territory of the Russian Federation. We cannot further provide information about where they are currently located,” said Pavel Latushko, who serves as the head of the People’s Anti-Crisis Directorate of Belarus. He was unable to disclose the number of children that have gone missing, or what might have happened to the children.

Russian-appointed authorities in the annexed territories assert that orphans from local orphanages are sent to Belarus for "recovery." In June, Secretary of the Union State Dmitry Mezentsev made a statement revealing that over two thousand children from the annexed Donetsk People's Republic and Luhansk People's Republic were sent on what was termed a "vacation" to a sanatorium near the Belarusian capital, Minsk.

This case is similar to other allegations of illegal deportations in recent months. In March, the International Criminal Court (ICC) issued an arrest warrant targeting Russian President Vladimir Putin for his alleged involvement in moving children from occupied territories of Ukraine to Russia. Notably, the ICC also issued a similar warrant for Maria Lvova-Belova, who holds the position of Russian Commissioner for Children's Rights.

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