Caravanserai
Human Rights

Mass beating of Kyrgyz migrants by Russian police sparks outcry

By Kanat Altynbayev

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Russian police officers secure an area in Moscow in May. On December 12, Russian police raided a garage in Khabarovsk and severely beat dozens of Central Asian migrants who had committed no offense. [Vasily Maximov/AFP]

BISHKEK -- An incident of Russian police brutality against Kyrgyz migrant workers has prompted an official protest by Bishkek.

The Kyrgyz Foreign Ministry Monday (December 16) summoned a Russian diplomat to complain about a December 12 police beating of Kyrgyz migrants in Khabarovsk, Russia.

The victims numbered 73 migrant workers in all, according to a December 14 report by 24.kg that cited members of the Kyrgyz diaspora. It is unclear whether all the victims were Kyrgyz, but the Kyrgyz government took up their cause.

At the meeting with the Russian diplomat, the Kyrgyz expressed their "vigorous protest of such actions, which were unlawful, took the form of gross physical force in excess of official powers, and were accompanied by verbal abuse against citizens of the Kyrgyz Republic", said the ministry in a statement.

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More than 200 Kyrgyz in Bishkek on June 25 protest the mistreatment of labour migrants in Russia. Russian police recently added to the list of abuses by beating up Kyrgyz migrant workers. [File]

The ministry called for "an objective review of the incident and the adoption of appropriate strict measures against the guilty parties".

The Russian Interior Ministry (MVD) promised to investigate, according to 24.kg.

Locked up and beaten

During the incident on December 12, Khabarovsk police officers raided a local bus garage and took the Central Asians, who were all bus drivers, to a jail. The police reportedly gave no explanation and ignored the Russian passports that some of the detainees had.

"For several hours, they [the Central Asians] were all brutally beaten with clubs," reported 24.kg, quoting members of the Kyrgyz diaspora. "They tore up the residence permits of some of them and then let them go. Several migrants ended up in the hospital."

24.kg posted photos of one victim's cuts and bruises, presumably taken by himself with a cell phone.

The police ostensibly wanted to check the detainees' papers, according to the Kyrgyz consulate in Khabarovsk.

OMON (riot police) officers took them away in two police buses before assaulting them, the migrants said in a videotaped conversation with Valentina Chupik, chairwoman of Sunrise of the World (Tong Jahoni), a Moscow human rights NGO.

Abuse continued even after beatings

The abuse and mistreatment did not end with the police.

Several of the migrants passed out from the severity of their injuries, but paramedics operating an ambulance refused to take them to the hospital because they lacked identification. The absence of identification was not their fault; the police had seized their documents when assaulting them.

The police beatings were racially motivated, said Chupik.

"The police beat the migrants while shouting, 'The slants have come in droves,'" said Chupik. "This is a Nazi crime."

International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) Vice-President Tolekan Ismailova, a Bishkek resident, also compared the brutality of the Khabarovsk incident with the Nazism of 1941.

"Joint reports monitoring the situation of migrants' rights in Russia show a tendency to narrow their space [to function] and a strengthening of violence and corruption," she said. "All this attests to large-scale violations of human rights and freedoms in Russia."

Xenophobia in Russia

Central Asians working in Russia, doing jobs that Russians scorn, are sadly familiar with contempt and hatred from the local population.

An August poll found an increasing number of respondents, compared to past surveys, who wanted fewer migrant workers in Russia and shorter permissible stays for them.

Civilians, like corrupt police, have assaulted Central Asians solely out of racial animus.

Labourers in Russia face the threat of being attacked by so-called skinheads, or neo-Nazis, who are on the lookout for anyone with non-Slavic features, Kyrgyz migrant worker Bolot Orozov said in July.

In 2018, Uzbek and Tajik migrant workers endured a wave of violent assaults throughout Russia.

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85 Comment(s)

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You guys really deserved it! You also have similar hate groups in your own country who had been busy against Chinese workers, and those Chinese workers are building your fxxx poor country.

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How is that possible? Are they really the bane of their existence?

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It looks as if you are a swine yourself

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The majority of Russians have forgotten their history. That's why they give themselves free rein to do anything. But I personally knew survivors of the Siege of Leningrad who were evacuated, or just lived in the USSR, who were much wiser than this generation.

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You are wrong. There's no such thing as an evil nation but there are bad people - and your nation has good and bad, miserable people, so don't say that all Russian people are bad!

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Folks, I don't get it: what does ethnicity have to do with it? Aren't the Kyrgyz nationalistic? It is everywhere; it is just that you don't understand what provocations are. The sayings of Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) about asabiyyah are: Speaking of asabiyyah (tribalism/radical nationalism) our Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ) said the following, as reportd by Sunan Abu Dawud: "One who calls for asabiyyah, or fights for asabiyyah, or dies for asabiyyah is not one of us (part of our Muslim Umma)." It is said that Prophet Muhammad received a question: "Oh, Messenger of Allah! What is asabiyyah?" And he answered: "It's when you support your nation (or tribe) in their oppression of others" (Sunan Abu Dawud, hadith # 5119). Speaking to his followers about all forms of asabiyyah, our Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ) said: "You should part with it. It is an abomination" (Sahih Bukhari and Muslima). Folks, be kind. I am Russian, but I don't have anything against other nationalities. Be kind. Peace be upon you

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May God bless and keep you!

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First off, Russians are not squeamish about it. They are not allowed in the job market - diasporas buy jobs. If it's so unbearable abroad, why do they leave their country? Russians leave their country just like Kyrgyz do - it's the same.

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The thing is a Russian wants to do little and get a lot! And they like to relax and drink more than work! So your employers hire a cheap migrant workers that overrun you! Also, your so-called "not-above-working" [people] can go binge drinking any time they want and fail to deliver for their bosses! My friends told me; they are those same employers themselves! That's all there is to it!

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Russia is the most despicable country - it's finished. This is my personal opinion.

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Russia is the most despicable country; it's finished. This is also my personal opinion.

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Russian faggoty alkies are good for nothing and don't want to do anything other than gulping down vodka. But listen to them, they have "raised from their knees", though they don't realise it's just their sexual position that has been changed... ))))))

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You Russians have all come from the former Soviet republics and swarmed all over Russia! Those who managed to settle have stayed! Now you're pounding your chest saying that you are Muscovites, you are cool, etc.! You are migrants yourselves! Remember, there's the law of the boomerang! You defeat us today, tomorrow not only will somebody make you kneel but also bend you over doggy style!

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I've been to Moscow many times; and genuine Muscovites don't care if people are from other places. They leave them in peace, and never bother anyone! Newcomer Moscovites can't live without thinking "how to exact revenge on those Asians for not obeying their Russian masters in their own lands!" They started talking back and hitting back!

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Russian fascism at its best! Both the Duma and government are enabling the incitement of racism!!! Nothing will change until they start arresting for using the word "wog!" We are not abusing Russians strangely enough, we do not answer their rudeness with our rudeness, but it's time for a reaction!

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All fascists are in Ukraine, aren't they?...

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Russian fascists are hundredfold worse than Hitler's [fascists]

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Have your loved ones been burned in a chamber, or hanged? The thing is that you are a Nazi, and you have no idea what you are writing about

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Arrest at the "Aviapark" Trade Center, Moscow: the police have been keeping a battered pregnant woman for more than seven hours. Two Tajik citizens have been arrested at the "Aviapark" Trade Center; both were beaten up and transported to the Khoroshevskiy district police precinct, where (according to the victims) the police have been holding the detainees (5:50 p.m., January 5, 2019) for more than seven hours without food, water, or bathroom access. The detained woman is pregnant; she is bleeding. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_5xfsPeBrMw

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This is Russian Nazism and fascism.

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A people who never remembers kindness will end up alone someday, even if we are talking about these pigs

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You are right 100 percent!

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Russian swine. It's for a good reason no one in the world considers Russians decent people; no one respects this civilisation garbage, a bizarre hybrid banged by all too many. Learn history. And no matter how hard you Russians are trying to re-write history, everybody knows who you are.

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The same can be said about you. Give an example from history or a link to a webpage. Think something up. Otherwise you are just a windbag.

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Why are the Russians "swine?" You know, there's no such thing as a "bad nation," it's just that some people are bad.

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After all, these are the descendants of those who gave their lives in the war with the Nazis.

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I think that forcing Russians out of the Central Asian republics in the 90s is backfiring now

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Why do the Russians behave like Nazis?

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OMON congratulated migrants by launching yet another raid all over the country on December 31. After that, it's just funny listening to the Uyghurs howling about their people get abused. I wish they (Uyghurs) had been sent to Russia so they would experience real racism, Nazism, raids, and [prison] camps.

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The police detain migrants en masse. Moscow, December 31 2019. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TFuFr6cSWF8

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The Russians have the wrong attitude towards our people. There was a time when our forefathers saved Russian children.

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And a little while ago the Central Asian republics forced out the Slavs

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Thanks to your grandpa and grandma

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It's like Hitler's Gestapo, not OMON.

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You Russian scum would do better to beat up the Chinese

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The Chinese would be chasing them like prey in the wild.

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In response, Chinese police will beat up Russians in China. There were several instances of this already. The Russian consulate throws out all the complaints from Russians to avoid a conflict with China.

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Maybe your dream will come true when the Chinese have better hypersonic missiles than the Russians do :)) But so far the Russians possess the best offensive weapons in the world :)

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Chinese don't watch Russian cartoons :)))

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Your hyper-sound will be of no use here. You were not able to defeat even small Chechnya, only the Georgians, getting more 200s than Afghanistan. [Cargo-200 is a Russian military code referring to dead bodies transported from the battlefield]. China will squash you like cockroaches, and then you will need wogs; you're going to sing a different song [about] the [Soviet] Union and communists

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Basically, you are the one who is scum

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The Russians consider the Chinese to be a civilization, and never try to kick them out. And I think that civilization means a person's state of mind! If a person is wise, then he is civilized! And they will prove it by their actions, no matter what their nationality is! However, I think Chinese are like locusts, devouring everything indiscriminately that stands in their way! Again, not all of them, but the majority! They will roll over everyone for their own sake! So, let them be friends, and maybe they will get it as soon as they lose their Slavic beauty!

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If the Russian authorities are so interested in purging the country of outsiders, let them start with trying to expel the Chinese, who are conquering Russia without any weapons! No way you can do that with Chinese. Just wait, we will soon see how these folks from the Heavenly [Kingdom] will fully own you! Then you'll understand everything, dear OMON police and Russian Nazis! What for did we fight Hitler together for? The results show the opposite. Once you wake up from your fantasy, it's going to be too late, and you will get a taste of your own medicine on your own!

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The Chinese will kick these OMON police arses all the way to Moscow

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I don't quite understand why the so-called OMON police for no good reason beat up those who feed them and give them an equal opportunity to work and live life? It's very unfortunate the Russians are genetically predisposed to debauchery, alcoholism, drug usage, adultery, all sorts of criminal acts, chauvinism, racism, Nazism, corruption, thuggery, egotism, stupidity, vulgarity, and jealousy of any kindness, and so forth. I have personally many times encountered unscrupulous OMON officers, street police, ultra-Nazis and some people who indiscriminately hated all newcomers, even of their ilk. A question: why do we need this freaking EEU then if it has no damn benefits for us whatsoever, and we are subjected to humiliation and oppression?

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Sit home, and no one will lay a hand on you

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That means sitting at home and vegetating like a plant? Yeah, then nobody will ever touch you; you'll buy the farm right there on your own!

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If the OMON police are so brave, they should come here, where they would be force-fed their own kersey boots

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And Russkies dare to run their mouths talking about Nazism in other countries, while they have it more than all other countries combined

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You are getting the backlash. I experienced a taste of nationalism myself in your country; you were yelling "go to Siberia", although what did Siberia have to do with me. And you beat me up. So, what's your problem now, bitches?

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Did they beat up someone for no reason? More likely it was well-deserved! You saw that coming, calling them slant-eyes. I remember my school years, when your kids insulted our kids. A fish rots from the head down, though. Of course, you don't like it when a slant-eye beats you up for a good reason! And drives you out to Siberia. Yeah, I hear you!

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How can this freaking gang be called OMON [Russian riot control police]? Of course it's not. They are pathetic, weak creatures covering up their crimes with their shoulder boards. I'm sure they wouldn't act so brazenly if they were in their own country. Real men never act like this, and the Russian government keeps silent. Generally speaking, we need to change our views, attitudes, and everything else with Russia. The majority of Russians don't like us, call us names, insult and humiliate us, but for whatever reason, our officials always say that Russians are our friends. How's that possible? I think these pathetic OMON troops wouldn't have the guts to do that; maybe it was a fabrication made by the higher-ups.

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In Russia, they recruit into OMON [Russian riot control police] and other agencies like it according to the "all brawn and no brains" principle. As a result, all sorts of nationalist, narrow-minded scum wind up in these units. They brainwash these bigots, telling them non-Russians and slant-eyes are to blame for everything. And these morons believe it. [Russians] need to recruit normal guys, select them according to their mental faculties, [make sure they don't have] a nationalist agenda, psychiatric problems, etc. And you freaking generals and colonels are risking your careers and income by having these kinds of subordinates.

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Nazis should be put in jail. VVP [Vladimir Putin], what are you thinking?

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Russians learned their lesson well from Hitler.

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Conversely, Hitler came to power using Stalin's methods. He even set up concentration camps drawing on the Soviet Gulag experiment.

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These acts of brutality, if they are true, and not provocations, cannot be justified by anything. If humble, hardworking people came to work as bus drivers in Khabarovsk or any other city, what could they possibly do to deserve this barbaric treatment, in reality a fascist slaughter? It's hard to believe this is true and really happened.

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We must go to Turkey and European countries. Russia never will be a friend. Looking from above to Muslim and Turkish speaking countries is in their blood. It will be correct to call them gentile bandits. No wonder European Union singles them out. Their deception and scheme can load up 100 donkeys.

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Yeah, you go right there, especially to Turkey. There you will encounter even harsher treatment. Go there, and we will keep working in Russia, where they don't treat us like that. You stupid morons who have never worked in Russia are talking shit.

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If our Kyrgyz brothers are treated that way by the Russian authorities while [Kyrgyzstan] joined the EEU to promote migrants' interests, then Tajikistan should stay away from any alliance with Russia.

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There's good reason why I have hated this dirty mix of drunkards and swine since the time I was a child.

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Scum like you forced us out. I remember you yelling "Orus Zhunbash" [Kyrgyz ethnic slur]. Die, you motherfucker

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You scum; those like you used to bully us when we were kids. I remember that. It'd probably better if you kicked the bucket.

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Brothers, why do you need this Russian poky hole of a place and poverty? Go to Europe - Poland, the Czech Republic. Salaries are higher, normal people live there. We need a high fence and visas for Russians, and to deport all Russians to their ancestral lands.

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There is a reason why every country is shooing them off, back to their Moscow bog lands. May they stay there and slurp cabbage soup, scooping it with leaky lapti [old Russian footwear; bast shoes].

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Russians can be beaten up, too. I don't want that to happen, but it can be predicted.

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They can. And you do beat up people. I recall how I was intimidated and scared to go out at night. [They would] certainly whoop me. I was 17, beaten up by strong men. I remember, as soon as the bruises healed new ones would appear. You are no better; the same Nazis.

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Damned fascist country. The sooner it collapses, the better for everyone.

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Then you will drop dead from starvation, I swear by Allah. You are dumb; you have no job. And we are working hard in Russia and sending you money. Scum like you live at our expense.

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It seems as if they didn't get their stupid heads bashed enough in the 1990s. Now we will adopt good old strong-arm methods.

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Then nothing is stopping us now from dealing with drunkards. There will be a backlash.

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Today I broke the nose of one scumbag for mumbling something like "you're nobody without Russia," etc. People should pay for their stupidity.

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You will die, Nazi

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Russians are Hitler's spawn

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Oh, I see now; Hitler brought humanitarian aid to the Russians in 1941 )

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Well, Hitler was also a veteran of WWII ))

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That is the Russian form of Nazism. Although Russians are still tolerated in Central Asian countries, after this kind of fascism [people] will start beat them up, and badly.

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When they say "putting up with", they are talking about unacceptable behavior. But we behave ourselves like normal, well-bred people in your country.

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Cultured? Ethnic slurs, stealing, boozing, behaving like swine. You can often get a crack in the snout for that.

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Where do they tolerate [them]? They quickly forced the Slavs out in the 90s

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I am afraid that you will get the same answer then

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[Russians] are about to lose patience with all the Central Asians coming in. Their cultural shenanigans, and how they behave, cause nothing but irritation!

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That's the best way to put it. These are not professional workers going there; everybody and their uncle comes looking for work. Migrants are willing to do any job since they have no choice, and Russians can't survive on this chicken feed.

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