The Cuban government announced that it had arrested 17 people linked to an organization that ran human trafficking to recruit Cuban citizens into the Russian army and take them to fight in the war in Ukraine. The organization allegedly targeted young Cubans, both living in Cuba and Russia, who would then be sent to fight in Ukraine. Those arrested could receive sentences of up to life in prison or the death penalty, depending on the type of crime.
Russia has long been an emigration destination for many Cubans, who face an extremely serious economic situation in their own country. Last year, Russian President Vladimir Putin approved a law granting simplified procedures for accessing citizenship for foreign citizens who join the army.