FIGHTING AGAINST THEIR HOMELAND
These volunteers are part of the Siberian Battalion, a new unit formed last summer and is officially part of Ukraine’s armed forces. Its members are mostly from ethnic minorities from Russia’s far east.
A former information technology worker from western Siberia, who goes by the military callsign Holod, said he left Russia when the full-scale invasion of Ukraine began.
“I tried to fight it and I tried to convince myself that this is not my war. I don’t care either about Ukraine or Russia (and) I wanted to go away from Russia anyway, so I relocated. But it didn’t work out,” added the Siberian Battalion soldier.
He said his conscience brought him to Kyiv, after he first moved to Georgia. It is a common route among these soldiers, who first travel to a third country before reaching Ukraine.