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Putin’s own propagandists turn on draft that has sent ‘hairdressers and teachers’ to the Ukrainian front

Olga Skabieva, one of the most prominent broadcasters of state television, on Tuesday criticized the mobilization campaign, urging criminal prosecution of those who abuse their powers to recruit men.

Even Russia’s most bloodthirsty war correspondents on state television have expressed their displeasure at what appears to be a completely random selection of recruits.

On Tuesday, Alexander Kots, a war correspondent in Komsomolskaya Pravda, published a complaint from the wife of a middle-aged surgeon who “would have done a lot of good in his job” but was called up as a soldier.

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Several Russian rulers who strongly supported the invasion of Ukraine launched public campaigns to “correct the errors” of the bill.

Mikhail Razvozhaev, governor of Sevastopol that Russia annexed in 2014, on Tuesday published a list of unfit men drafted.

“I very much hope that common sense will prevail and the partial mobilization will become fully transparent, legal and regulated as soon as possible,” he said, vowing to bring back the wrongly mobilized men even if they have already been taken to a training camp.

Meanwhile, Russian officials said Tuesday morning that they were setting up a mobile pilot office on the border with Georgia where several thousand desperate men were queuing to flee the country amid reports of an imminent exit ban.

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In an ominous sign for at least 5,500 cars waiting to cross into Georgia, local officials in Russia’s border region of North Ossetia said Tuesday that they plan to set up a mobile roaming office at the border.

Georgia officials said on Monday that about 115,000 people and 37,000 vehicles crossed from Russia last week.

Kazakhstan, which shares a long border in southeast Russia, has received at least 98,000 Russians since Putin announced the mobilization last week, the Kazakh Interior Ministry said.

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