For almost the past nine months, Russian President Vladimir Putin has waged his invasion of Ukraine. Although considering his military to be an elite fighting force, Ukrainian troops have proven themselves more than capable of defending their homes and country. Recently, Russian citizens have gone to extraordinary lengths not to serve Putin after the mobilization of Russian forces. While some run for the borders and others inflict self-harm, Putin continues to move forward as he announced the annexation of the Donbass Republics. With Putin declaring the territories part of the Russian Federation, Andrii Yusov, a representative for Ukraine’s military, admitted that thousands of Russian soldiers have contacted them in hopes of surrendering.

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Speaking on the Freedom TV Channel, Yusov detailed a project called I Want to Live, which was created to help Russian troops surrender safely to the Ukrainian armed forces. “We started getting phone calls not just from soldiers who were on the territory of Ukraine as part of the occupation army, but also those who had just been mobilized and were still on the territory of the Russian Federation, or their relatives, or even people who suspected that they might be mobilized and were checking just in case. In a few weeks, we have already [received] more than 2,000 such requests.”

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Andrii Yusov explained that Russian troops are not being harmed after they surrender. The Ukraine government promises to treat them under the guidance of the Geneva Conventions.

As for Vladimir Putin, his push for more territory received a statement from Joe Biden, who has been viciously outspoken about the war in Ukraine. When Putin announced the new regions under the Russian Federation, Biden admitted, “These actions have no legitimacy. The United States will always honor Ukraine’s internationally recognized borders. We will continue to support Ukraine’s efforts to regain control of its territory by strengthening its hand militarily and diplomatically, including through the $1.1 billion in additional security assistance the United States announced this week.”

On top of another $1.1 billion in assistance, Joe Biden warned Putin that the United States will continue to work with Ukraine, adding another $12 billion in support and more sanctions. “These sanctions will impose costs on individuals and entities — inside and outside of Russia — that provide political or economic support to illegal attempts to change the status of Ukrainian territory. We will rally the international community to both denounce these moves and to hold Russia accountable. We will continue to provide Ukraine with the equipment it needs to defend itself, undeterred by Russia’s brazen effort to redraw the borders of its neighbor. And I look forward to signing legislation from Congress that will provide an additional $12 billion to support Ukraine. I urge all members of the international community to reject Russia’s illegal attempts at annexation and to stand with the people of Ukraine for as long as it takes.”

This piece was written by Jeremy Porter on October 4, 2022. It originally appeared on and is used with permission.

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