Bogdan Ermokhin turns 18 on November 19 and has already received a notice that he is required to join the Russian army in December, his lawyer has warned.
Ekaterina Bobrovskaya, the lawyer who represents Bogdan and his sister Valeria, said earlier this month: ‘I no longer have any doubts about Russia‘s plans.
The statement, seen by The Telegraph, continued: ‘When Bogdan turns 18 in three weeks, he will already be an adult, and, most likely, he will be sent to serve in the Russian army.’
Ukrainian orphan Bogdan Ermokhin (pictured) turns 18 on November 19 and has already received a notice that he is required to join the Russian army in December, his lawyer has warned
The 17-year-old Ukrainian who was abducted from Mariupol is facing conscription into Vladimir Putin’s army as the Kremlin hunts for new recruits
Young Bogdan was among 31 children abducted from Mariupol and displaced into Russia in May 2022. He was put into foster care despite having his sister as a legal guardian.
Bogdan was allegedly forced to take Russian citizenship and his lawyer claims he was displayed as Russian propaganda.
It comes after reports emerged of Moscow abducting children and brainwashing them to turn against Ukraine in a bid to ‘Russify’ them.
Maria Lvova-Belova, Russia’s commissioner for children’s rights, has responded to the claims from Bogdan’s lawyers.
Lvova-Belova is subject to an arrest warrant from the International Criminal Court – along with Vladimir Putin – for the alleged deportation of thousands of Ukrainian children into Russia.
She claimed that Bogdan is not at risk of being conscripted because he is studying in college and can defer his enlistment.
However, when he turns 18 in nine days, his lawyers say he is not allowed to renounce his Russian citizenship unless he serves in the military.
Lvova-Belova also claimed that Bogdan could return home if he wishes and invited his sister to come to Russia to pick him up.
Young Bogdan (pictured) was among 31 children abducted from Mariupol and displaced into Russia in May 2022
Bogdan (pictured) was allegedly forced to take Russian citizenship and his lawyer claims he was displayed as Russian propaganda
Maria Lvova-Belova (pictured), Russia’s commissioner for children’s rights, claimed that Bogdan is not at risk of being conscripted because he is studying in college and can defer his enlistment
Maria Lvova-Belova was pictured meeting with Vladimir Putin in early March 2022 in the very first weeks of the Russian President’s barbaric assault on Ukraine. Both are subject to arrest warrants from the ICC
Her comments in an interview with Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty come despite several failed attempts to bring Bogdan home.
In July last year, Bogdan attempted to make the journey home on his own but failed.
In a public campaign for his return, Bogdan’s lawyer said in a video statement: ‘Bogdan himself has repeatedly expressed his desire to return to Ukraine.
‘At present, we do not have any confirmation regarding the return of the child to Ukraine, despite the fact that all the necessary documents have been submitted, and there is confirmation regarding their receipt.’
Bogdan’s case was among the evidence gathered by human rights lawyers to submit to the ICC ahead of an arrest warrant being issued.
Fears of being conscripted come as Russia desperately searches for more recruits as it continues its illegal invasion of Ukraine. They are suffering heavy casualties in their offensive in the east.
Moscow is looking to recruit 420,000 personnel by the end of this year the UK Ministry of Defence has said.