Russian man in Sweden faces deportation and fears forced combat

FILE- Conscripts stand at a military conscription office in Grozny, Chechnya's provincial capital, Russia,  17 November, 2014.
FILE- Conscripts stand at a military conscription office in Grozny, Chechnya's provincial capital, Russia, 17 November, 2014. Copyright Associated Press
By Euronews
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Russian citizen and Ukrainian resident Sergey Poddubnyy is currently living in Sweden with his family. Moscow has sent out two military conscription orders. Poddubnyy now faces deportation and forced to fight against a country he considers his own.

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A Russian citizen who moved to Sweden is now facing deportation back to Russia, where he will be forced to fight in the war against Ukraine. 

Sergey Poddubnyy lives in the coastal Northern city of Luleå with his Ukrainian wife Iryna and their 14-year-old son, Ivan. The Russian government has sent two military conscription orders to his family members: one to his father's house and the latest to his brother's.

At the moment, Swedish immigration officials are questioning whether the order is real. If accepted, Poddubnyy will be deported and separated from his family. His wife and son Ivan are Ukrainian citizens and are allowed to stay in Sweden under the Mass Refugee Directive. 

"As soon as I reach the border, the army can take me and use me in the war against Ukraine. Is it normal to send a person, who does not want to go and kill, to Putin's army?" Poddubnyy said.

Poddubnyy has a Russian passport. Yet, he also has a residence permit in Ukraine. When the war broke out, he was in Russia for work. He now fears he will have to go fight against the country he loves. 

"Do they mean that I should go and kill and then live with it? I have lived with these people for most of my life in Ukraine, longer than I have lived in Russia,” Poddubnyy says.

It is unclear whether Poddubnyy can return to Ukraine. If he does, he risks being drafted into the military too.

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