‘They Told Me We’re All Russians’: Fears Grow Over ‘Re-Education’ of Ukrainian Children

Shaun Walker - The Guardian

During the 14 months for which Veronika Vlasenko attended school in Russia, she was regularly told by teachers and fellow students that she would never be able to go home to Ukraine. “Every day they said to me that I would be staying here for ever and would never leave Russia,” she said. “They told me that Ukraine doesn’t exist, that it never existed, that we’re all Russians … At times the other kids would beat me for being pro-Ukrainian.”

Veronika was one of nearly 20,000 children documented by Ukrainian authorities as having been taken from Ukraine to Russia over the past two years. The authorities believe the real number is probably 10 times that, while Russian officials have even boasted of moving 700,000 Ukrainian children to Russia.