ua en ru

Estonia not to extradite Ukrainian men of conscription age

Estonia not to extradite Ukrainian men of conscription age Estonia will not extradite Ukrainian men of conscription age (photo: Getty Images)

The Estonian government is considering extraditing Ukrainian men of conscription age who are legally present on its territory, states Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas.

She noted that she discussed with President Volodymyr Zelenskyy the issue of the possible forced extradition of men of the conscription age to Ukraine.

"President Zelenskyy was describing that there are people who are on the battlefield and then there are people who are paying taxes to Ukraine so that you can fund the soldiers who are on the battlefield. But then there are also people who are in foreign countries like Estonia. Now for us, they have the right to be here if they follow the rules, if they have reached us, then the EU gives them temporary protection. So we will definitely not do anything on our side to give those people out. It is up to Ukraine to turn to the people who are here and request them to come back to help their motherland," said Kallas.

Compulsory return of conscripts from abroad

In December, German media outlets WELT and Bild published an interview with Ukraine's Minister of Defense Rustem Umerov. The media, quoting the minister, claimed that the Ministry of Defense allegedly plans to conscript Ukrainians from abroad. It was mentioned that it concerned men aged 25-60.

Later, the Ministry of Defense clarified Umerov's statement, which was disseminated by German media. They specified that there is no discussion about conscripting men from abroad on the agenda. The minister himself stated that he meant a call for justice.

In late December, the Minister of Internal Affairs of Estonia, Lauri Laanemets, stated that Estonia is ready to help Ukraine mobilize its citizens by bringing back men of the conscription age.

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said there are questions for military duty-bound men who left Ukraine during the war and beyond the law. He added that it is important not only to defend Ukraine on the front lines but also to pay taxes to the budget.