Bohdan Yermochin, deported to Russia from occupied Mariupol, is now home, Ukrainian human rights ombudsman Dmytro Lubinec said on Sunday. In November, the teenager was summoned to a Russian military commission. He published an appeal to the President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky for help in returning to his homeland.
– Our entire team worked on Bohdan’s return. The first thing he told me was that he was very happy and thanked everyone who helped him get home,” the spokesman said. human rights Dmytro Lubinec.
He added that he was involved in the process of the young Ukrainian’s return to the country runny nose and a humanitarian organization working for children – UNICEF.
Information about Yermokhin’s return was also provided by the head of President Volodymyr Zelensky’s office, Andriy Yermak. “We were in constant contact with Bohdan and he is already in Ukraine, next to his sister,” Yermak wrote on the Telegram channel, attaching a photo.
Yermokhine returned to the country on his 18th birthday.
– I believed I would be in Ukraine, but I didn’t think it would be my birthday – he said in the recording published by Reuters. – It’s a very nice gift. The emotions are huge. I feel that Ukraine needs me, he emphasized.
Handed over to a foster family
The Ukrainian portal tsn.ua recalled that Yermokhin lost his parents a few years ago. Before the outbreak of the armed invasion Russia to Ukraine in February 2022, he studied at the metallurgical college in Mariupol. After the city was occupied by the Russians, he was deported to the territory of the Russian Federation and transferred to a foster family on the outskirts of Moscow.
In March 2023, Yermokhin tried to escape from Russia to Ukraine, but Russian secret services detained him near the border with Belarus.
A summons to a military commission and an appeal to Zelensky
In November, Yermokhin was summoned to a Russian military commission.
After a few days – through his defender – he published an appeal to President Volodymyr Zelensky for help in returning to his homeland.
After an appeal to Zelensky, which was disseminated by Russian independent media, Russian children’s rights ombudsman Maria Lviv-Belova announced that Yermokhin’s return to the country had been agreed.
Earlier, Lviv-Belova explained that the teenager had been summoned to a military commission “to clarify information about military registration.” – All citizens of the Russian Federation of his age receive such a call. If a teenager turns 18 while attending college or university, he or she is entitled to suspension of military service until he or she graduates. We cannot talk about his conscription into the Russian army now, she argued.
In March The International Criminal Court issued an arrest warrant for Lviv-Belova and Vladimir Putin in connection with the deportation of children from Ukraine.
tsn.ua, tvn24.pl, Reuters
Main photo source: Andriy Yermak/Telegram