As tensions continue to rise between East and West, the U.S. Embassy in Moscow issued a warning on Tuesday to Americans who hold dual citizenship, imploring them to leave Russia immediately to avoid forced military service.
The warning comes in the wake of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s partial mobilization order as Russia seeks to regain the upper hand in its invasion of Ukraine.
According to the U.S. Embassy, the Russian government may “refuse to acknowledge” the dual citizenship of Americans living in Russia. This could allow the Russian government to deny citizens access to U.S. consulate support and could result in their conscription for military service under the new mobilization order that went into effect last week.
The security alert continues by advising dual nationals to leave Russia as soon as possible. Commercial flights out of the country are hard to come by and the Embassy said it faces severe limitations when it comes to assisting citizens’ travel.
The alert also states that U.S. citizens should not enter Russia under any circumstances.
Tensions have been heightened by Russia’s efforts to absorb certain regions of Ukraine through local “referendums.”
Residents of the eastern Ukrainian regions of Donetsk and Luhansk, as well as the Kherson and Zaporozhye regions, voted over the weekend on whether to join Russia. According to the Russian state news agency TASS, these territories could be annexed as early as Friday.
In a statement, the Biden administration called the referendums a “sham” and said the U.S. will “work with our allies and partners to impose additional swift and severe economic costs on Russia.”
On top of these escalations, Europe is in the midst of both an economic and an energy crisis.
Since the shutdown of the Russian fuel supply to Europe, citizens across the continent have seen their energy bills skyrocket. And with yesterday’s apparent sabotage of the Nord Stream pipelines, the energy crisis will surely be exacerbated.
Bloomberg reported that European “chemical producers, steel plants and car manufacturers starved of essential raw materials [have] joined households in sounding the alarm over rocketing energy bills. The suspected sabotage of Germany’s main pipeline for gas from Russia underlined that Europe will have to survive without any significant Russian flows.”
According to former International Monetary Fund economist Maurice Obstfeld, “Europe is very clearly heading into what could be a fairly deep recession.” In fact, Europe may be facing its third-largest economic contraction since World War II.
Coupled with the potential escalation of the Ukraine conflict and increased saber-rattling between NATO and Russia, Europe is likely headed toward a dark winter of discontent.
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