Russia in the southern territories he occupied Ukraine is busy collecting information about society. This work is carried out through “filtration centers”. Russia is thought to be preparing to hold “referendums” to annex these territories.
Viktoria Levashina, who lives in Mariupol, hoped that the process of clearing “undesirable” Ukrainians in these territories, which are now controlled by Russia, would be relatively easy. The workplace and demographic profile of a 60-year-old woman working as an accountant in a construction company should not have been a concern.
One night in April, when it was her turn for personal inspection at the “filtration center” located near Mariupol, Levashina handed over her passport and mobile phone to Russian officials and waited for the passport to be sent to Russia.
Levashina handed over the device belonging to her 84-year-old mother, knowing that the Russians were trying to find any suspicious information by scrutinizing the phones. Unlike his own, this device was almost empty.
But what Levashina didn’t know was that the Russians also had her on their computers and phones social they will search for media profiles. They did not like what they found here, so they called the woman to the tent for questioning.
“Hey fennel (“ukrop” is a racist word used by Russians against Ukrainians), hey Banderachy (Russians use this word to mean “Ukrainian fascist”), I will cut you to pieces.” – he said Russia the official shouted to Levashina. He is the woman’s own Facebook to your avatar Ukraine angry that he added the flag.
Enter Russia for Officer Levashina 10 He said that he was banned for a year. Then, kicking him in the side, he told Lvov to “refuse”. The officer gave the woman her passport and phone, took her out of the tent and left her alone in the dark.
“I’m drowning”, Levashina wrote a message to her relative Sasha, who lives in Israel. Who lost his home in the war and of Ukraine safe to move into controlled territory way the absent woman was hoping to go through Moscow to her relatives in Israel.
What Levashina experienced in the “filtration center” did not happen to her alone. Hundreds of Ukrainians have reported being insulted and abused in numerous centers in Russian-occupied territories.
Some in the occupied territories Ukraine citizens voluntarily come to these centers to obtain a transit document to enter Russia. These people have close relatives and friends living in Russia, and some of them just want to have the opportunity to move freely in the territory of the region. But some are forcibly brought to “filtration centers”.
However, regardless of how they came here, they treat all Ukrainians as villains. Their fingerprints are taken, their photos are taken, and their identity documents are scanned. Their name, workplace, family members and address are recorded in a special database.
This data collection Russia is valuable for Experts say that the Kremlin may start implementing the plan of “referendums” to annex the territories it has occupied. When Russia annexed Crimea in 2014, it tried to create the image of a referendum.
People’s phones are checked for any communication with Ukrainian army soldiers or comments against Russia. The Russians download and store all the data on the phone.
Some people are undressed and checked. They want to see if there are any pro-Ukraine tattoos on their bodies. In addition, they ask people’s opinions about the war. Those who raise suspicions are more likely to be interrogated and sometimes beaten. Some of them disappear.
Ukrainian men who do not pass the filtration process, especially those with combat experience, can be imprisoned. It is not known where they are and whether they survived. Among the unfiltered are local government workers, activists and those expressing patriotic sentiments.
Ukrainian and Western officials, as well as human rights organizations, have declared that Russia’s filtering centers violate the Geneva Convention, which establishes standards of conduct during conflict.
US Department of State in a statement last month, he called the filtration camps a war crime and demanded that the Kremlin stop this activity. This is Russia since the beginning of the war military is not the only war crime his forces have been accused of.
It is reported that 1.6 million Ukrainians were detained, interrogated and registered in infiltration camps.
The number of these centers has been increased to 18. “Nastoyasheye vremya” was able to identify nine of them. Dozens of checkpoints, a large number of Russian soldiers and separatists are stationed around these centers.
Journalist, member of the “Media Initiative for Human Rights” group operating in Kyiv Stanislav MiroshnichenkoAccording to him, the citizens of Ukraine do not have any rights in Russia or the occupied territories without receiving the mentioned “filtering” pass.
Many go to these centers themselves to avoid being questioned at the checkpoints. However, Miroshnichenko says that Russian militants “sooner or later will reach every local resident”.
From the “Euromaidan SOS” organization of Ukraine Natalia Yashchuk He said that there are many civilians who support Ukraine in Kherson imprisonment is being
This will prevent those citizens from participating in the “referendum” held by the Kremlin and, therefore, from casting votes that do not benefit Moscow. Collected documents and information can also be used to falsify the results of the “voting”.
Levashina’s story has a happy ending. A rabbi in Maripol helped him to go to the territory controlled by Ukraine and from there to Israel.