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Ukrainian Males Aged 18-60 Are Banned from Leaving the Country, Zelensky Says in New Declaration

The mobilization also instructed “the Security Service of Ukraine to take counterintelligence measures during the general mobilization.”
A Ukrainian serviceman holds a rocket-propelled grenade (RPG) launcher at fighting positions outside the city of Kharkiv, Ukraine February 24, 2022. REUTERS/Maksim Levin
A Ukrainian serviceman holds a rocket-propelled grenade (RPG) launcher at fighting positions outside the city of Kharkiv, Ukraine February 24, 2022. REUTERS/Maksim Levin

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has ordered a general military mobilization. 

In a declaration signed late Thursday, Zelensky said that “in order to ensure the defense of the state, maintaining combat and mobilization readiness of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and other military formations,” a broad-based mobilization was ordered, including in the capital, Kyiv and all Ukraine’s major cities.

“Mobilization shall be carried out within 90 days from the date of entry into force of this Decree,” the announcement said.

The mobilization also instructed “the Security Service of Ukraine to take counterintelligence measures during the general mobilization.”

It ordered the “conscription of conscripts, reservists for military service, their delivery to military units and institutions of the Armed Forces of Ukraine” and other state security services.

At the same time, Ukraine has banned all-male citizens 18-60 years old from leaving the country, according to the State Border Guard Service.

The statement said that following the introduction of martial law in Ukraine, a temporary restriction had been imposed. 

“In particular, it is forbidden for men aged 18-60, Ukraine citizens, to leave the borders of Ukraine,” the statement said. “This regulation will remain in effect for the period of the legal regime of martial law. We ask the citizens to take this information into consideration.”

Some more context: At least 57 people have died and 169 injured since Moscow launched the invasion, according to Ukraine’s Minister of Healthcare, Viktor Lyashko. 

“We’re staying home. We don’t want to leave,” says 24-year-old Andrew who had just learned about the travel ban on Ukrainian men. He did not disclose his full name for security reasons.

“I can’t leave now because last update (was that) was that guys from 18 to 68 … cannot leave borders of Ukraine,” he says. “We will stay here till Russians go home because it’s important to us to stay in our homes,” he added. “We will stay with our government.”

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