"I don’t wanna think about it": a young Russian woman mobilized by the army testifies

Olesya Yanho, a Russian anesthesiologist, was arrested in Moscow during an anti-mobilization demonstration. She could be forced to go to Ukraine.

She is one of those Russians facing a major choice. Olesya Yanho, a Russian anesthetist, told BFMTV how she found herself having to consider going to war in Ukraine against her will.

The young woman was arrested during a demonstration in Moscow on Wednesday. She assures that she was just walking around the rally area.

“People were chanting… I can’t say everything because I’m still in Russia, but the most common slogans were ‘no to war’, ‘no to mobilization’, ‘Putin in the trenches'”, explains she on BFMTV.

After spending 4 hours at the police station, where her phone was confiscated, she received a summons linked to the partial mobilization announced on Wednesday by Russian President Vladimir Putin. Olesya Yanho is not the only one in this case: the NGO OVD-Info reports that several people who were arrested on Wednesday received summonses to military enrollment centers.

The announcement of a partial mobilization caused an influx of Russians wishing to leave the country, without any figures being available. On Wednesday evening, more than 1,300 people were arrested during improvised anti-mobilization demonstrations across Russia, according to OVD-Info.

She doesn’t dare tell her parents about it

Olesya Yanho says she was summoned to a “military police station” on Thursday but did not show up. She does not yet know if she will respond to this call for mobilization: “It’s a very difficult decision, I don’t want to think about it”.

The young woman does not even dare to speak about it to her parents.

“There is a generational divide. Many Russian parents watch propaganda television and have a different reading of what is happening at the moment than that of youth,” she said.

If she accepts, she expects to find herself on the front line because of her job as an anesthesiologist: “we are used to treating trauma, bloodshed”. According to the young woman, her summons specifies “you will be directed according to your training”.

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