Russian invaders and local collaborators force residents in temporarily occupied Zaporizhzhia region to receive passports of the Russian Federation. «Russian governor» Yevhen Balytsky promised to give passports to 80% of local population before illegal «elections» in September 2023.
Occupation «administration» conducts compulsory «passportization» of residents in occupied Zaporizhzhia by «travelling teams» of passport officers.
«Now travelling teams visit villages. There is a great demand for Russian passports. We need to conduct elections in September. People need passports to participate in elections. There are no restrictions. I hope that up to 50% of population will have Russian passports by this summer. Up to 80% will have them by September. This is our goal», as «acting governor» of Zaporizhzhia region Yevhen Balytsky told at propagandist TV channel.
Local residents on occupied territory explained how «great demand» for Russian passports is being formed.
«My 83 years old mother receives monthly «social assistance» of 10 000 Russian rubles from Russian occupants. In March, postwoman asked whether my mother was going to register for the Russian pension. She said that the pension would be higher and it would be «legitimate permanent payments». You can often encounter such «an advertisement» of Russian pensions in the region», as resident of Melitopol raion reported.
In order to receive «the Russian pension», people must have passport of the Russian Federation.
For example, occupation «authorities» of Kostyantynivka community of Melitopol raion published the following list of documents necessary for the registration of the Russian pension: original and copies of the Russian passport, pensioner’s certificate, employment certificate, SNILS (individual code within the Russian social security system).
Since March 2023, the passport of the Russian Federation has been mandatory for the receipt of permit to travel around occupied territories of Zaporizhzhia region.
It should be noted that in January 2023 Russian passport has been absent in the list of necessary documents.
Russian invaders tell local residents about urgent need to receive Russian passport during frequent «filtration measures» on temporarily occupied territories.
«New «shift» of Russian military came to our village. They immediately visited all houses with searches and «educational conversations». They always asked one question: do you have Russian passport?», as resident of the occupied part of Zaporizhzhia region reported.
The man told that he was afraid to lie to Russian occupants that he submitted documents for Russian passport. Invaders are able to check information and consequences of lying to them can be unpredictable. As an outcome, many villagers submit documents to receive the status of Russian citizens.
Earlier the Center for Journalist Investigations reported that Russian occupants gave passports, first of all, to employees of municipal and state owned enterprises.
Russian compulsory passportisation has the following goals as the Main Department of the National Police of Ukraine in Zaporizhzhia region reported. One is about «legalization» of the Russian occupation. Russian authorities will tell that there are Russian citizens in occupied region and that all Russian actions are «legitimate». Then, Russians will receive personal data of residents, in order to conduct September pseudo-elections.
«Ukrainian citizens can report about crimes, including compulsory passportization, through messengers «Telegram» and «Whatsapp» (phone number is +380504529195). E-mail for the communication with the Main Department of the National Police of Ukraine in Zaporizhzhia region is [email protected]», as website of the National Police of Ukraine informs.
Seven reports about Russian compulsory passportization have been submitted by residents of the occupied part of Zaporizhzhia region to the National Police in Zaporizhzhia region from February 24, 2022 until February 22, 2023 as Ukrainian law enforcement bodies informed.