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Occupation authorities in Crimea plans to involve one in every 10 schoolchildren in the Yunarmiya – KrymSOS

02.06.2023, 12:02

The occupation authorities in Crimea plan to recruit over 10% of schoolchildren into the "Yunarmiya", reports the RFE/RL project "Krym.Realii", citing the human rights organization "KrymSOS".

This was stated by the deputy head of the occupying government of Crimea, Alyona Romanovskaya. They plan to recruit this many schoolchildren by the end of 2024. The Crimea HQ of the militarized organization was created by the occupiers in 2019.

According to the organization's official website, more than 1 million children are currently members of Yunarmiya. Over 30,000 of them are children from Crimea.

The organization's main goal is to "raise a citizen and a patriot", writes the Yunarmiya website. The "yunarmians" are also taught to handle and shoot various types of weapons and undergo tactical and formation training.

"Children in Ukraine's occupied territories are effectively being conditioned to willingly 'sacrifice themselves for the motherland,' to admire 'Russia's greatness' and the new 'heroes' of the so-called 'special operation.' Children are also being raised to think in terms of 'us vs. them' and to perceive Ukraine as Russia's main enemy," stress the human rights activists.

Participation in the organization is supposed to be "voluntary"; nevertheless, children and school administrations are often coerced to join in various ways.

This April, "Yunarmiya" was included in the US sanctions list for "supporting Russia's efforts to undermine the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine through militarization and ideological grooming of schoolchildren." It has been sanctioned by Ukraine, Canada and Switzerland for the same reasons.

As reported by IMI, the prosecutors of the Starobilsk District Prosecutor's Office (Luhansk oblast) submitted an indictment to court against a resident of Bilovodsk, Starobilsk district, who took part in the implementation of Russian education standards and endorsed armed aggression against Ukraine.

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