'Poland has started deporting Ukrainian male draft dodgers'. What is actually happening?

04.09.2023, 12:06
'Poland has started deporting Ukrainian male draft dodgers'. What is actually happening? - Photo
The border of Poland (Photo: Border Service of Poland)

"News" is going viral online of Poland supposedly extraditing to Ukraine men liable for military service who left the country illegally. The Polish publication Rzeczpospolita, to which there is a link, did not write this. In its article , the newspaper tells, based on the statements of some politicians in Ukraine, how in the future, it might be possible that draft dodgers who illegally went abroad may be returned to Ukraine, and that suspected criminals were deported from Poland.

The phrase from the article, which went viral on the Internet, reads: "Poland is already transferring a number of Ukrainians to the services above the Dnipro [to Ukraine – ed.]."

The publication turned to the Border Service of Poland, which reported that it had already deported Ukrainian citizens who were facilitating the transfer of illegal migrants to Europe.

The article does not mention other categories of Ukrainians deported from Poland.

And this is how the piece is presented online:

Скриншот з Telegram

Russian propaganda instantly picked up on the fake story:

Further, the article analyzes the recent ideas of individual politicians in Ukraine regarding the extradition of evaders.

In particular, on September 1, the head of the Servant of the People parliamentary faction, David Arakhamia, assumed that Ukrainian law enforcement officers would demand the extradition of men of draft age who illegally left Ukraine.

The headquarters of the Polish Border Service reported that from February 24, 2022 to August 31, 2023, almost 2.87 million citizens of Ukraine aged 18-60 entered Poland, and approximately 2.8 million Ukrainians left.

About 80,000 Ukrainians remain in Poland and are potentially subject to mobilization; the percentage of those who actually met the conditions for release from service is unknown, the department's spokeswoman said.

Fedir Venislavskyi, head of the Verkhovna Rada Committee on National Security, does not rule out the possibility of an extradition mechanism for draft dodgers who illegally left the country. Such extradition requires the registration of criminal proceedings on a case-by-case basis.

In order to extradite such men, Ukraine must issue an international arrest warrant for each of them, notes Rzeczpospolita.

"If we detain such a foreigner, for example, for a simple check on the road, our KSIP system [Polish Information System of the National Police – ed.] will show that this is a person who is wanted by the Prosecutor's Office of Ukraine, because there is Interpol data. We detain such a the person and we inform the prosecutor's office. The Polish court then decides whether to extradite [this person],"  the spokesperson of the Main Directorate of the Polish Police explained the procedure.

On August 11, Ukraine's Security Service announced that it had blocked three new channels for taking draft dodgers abroad.

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