Disappointed with the developments sparked by the war in Ukraine inside Russia, with the harsh Western sanctions, but also with the restrictions on fundamental human rights, many young Russians are settling in Istanbul hoping for a better future. It makes it easier for them that they do not need a visa to travel to Turkey. They say, however, that they can not make plans in the medium term. The most important thing for them was to leave first.
Andrei, 25, and his partner Alina from Vladivostok are shopping in the city’s supermarket. They are lucky because they work remotely. He as a programmer and she as an online artist: “We have been planning to go abroad for a long time”, says Alina. “However, we had to speed up the process. Maybe if we delayed, we would not be allowed to leave Russia.”
“Russia is the attacker”
Most young Russians in Istanbul fear that their homeland is going from bad to worse. They are concerned about the political situation back home. Elizabeth, 25, says Russia is not a state governed by the rule of law, and Roman, 32, adds: “Nobody knows what rules, what laws will apply in Russia tomorrow.”
Young Russians say they are angry and frustrated with what is happening in Ukraine and their homeland. However, they are also particularly worried about their own personal future. Marina cries when asked about it: “It is impossible to plan my life in the medium term,” she says.
For her part, Alina estimates that she has no future in her homeland: “You do not know what dawns on you. So you can not make plans for a life in Russia.”
For most who speak into the microphone of the German Southwestern Radio SWR there is no excuse for the Russian invasion of Ukraine. “Russia is the attacker and we are very ashamed of it,” said Elizabeth, 25.
Uwe Lib (SWR, Istanbul)
Source: Deutsche Welle
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