A million Russians fled before long?
The Great Russian Exodus
A new Russian diaspora is emerging outside of Russia. Hundreds of thousands of people have fled their homes in Ukraine since the start of the war. The Kremlin denies the high number of refugees.
Russians before the border crossing to Georgia: The war in Ukraine has caused a real exodus from Russia.
The data is not secured or independently verifiable. One thing is clear: the forced mobilization of hundreds of thousands of Russians for the war in Ukraine has triggered an exodus of refugees from Russia. Outside of Russia, a new Russian diaspora is emerging, consisting mainly of young people and members of the urban middle class.
Around 700,000 Russians are said to have entered Georgia alone, as Georgian President Salome Zurabishvili (70) told “Radio France”. Around 100,000 Russians remained in their country and 600,000 traveled further afield, for example to Armenia or Turkey and further to Europe.
Other popular destinations for Russian refugees are Serbia, Israel and the United Arab Emirates. According to Zurabishvili, most of the Russians who have arrived are young or belong to the middle class.
The Kremlin denied this
In addition, around 200,000, again mostly young Russians, have entered Kazakhstan, as the Russian newspaper “Komsomolskaya Pravda” reported a month ago – most of them apparently fleeing forced military service in Ukraine.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov (55) rejected such reports in early October. “I don’t have the exact numbers, but of course they are far from what is claimed,” he said, according to Reuters.
In addition, there are likely to be an unreported number of tens of thousands of refugees who left via other routes or who still had a valid Schengen visa. In mid-September, the Schengen countries suspended visa facilitation for Russians. (bag)