BBC: Nearly 20,000 Ukrainians crossed borders to escape draft

The British broadcaster BBC says nearly 20,000 men have fled Ukraine to escape being drafted as fighting with Russian forces drags on.

The BBC reported on Friday that based on data from neighboring countries such as Romania, nearly 20,000 men are believed to have illegally crossed into those countries since the start of the Russian invasion in February 2022 to August this year.

Some men reportedly swam across rivers, while others walked across borders to neighboring countries under the cover of night.

The BBC also said that some 21,000 other men attempted to flee, but were caught by Ukrainian authorities.
After Russia's invasion, most men aged 18 to 60 were banned from leaving the country due to general mobilization.

But corruption, such as bribery to escape conscription, has become a social problem, making the securing of military personnel a challenge.

Meanwhile, Russia has been carrying out drone attacks on Ukrainian infrastructure. On Saturday, Ukraine's air force said it shot down 29 out of 38 drones launched from Russia.

In the southern region of Odesa, local authorities said drones struck energy infrastructure, with one person injured in a fire caused by the attack.

A British defense ministry intelligence update on Saturday said the most intense ground combat has taken place in three areas: Kupiansk and Avdiivka in the east, and on the east bank of the Dnipro River in the southern region of Kherson.

The ministry also said that as colder winter weather sets in, there are few immediate prospects of major changes on the frontline.