Fierce Gurkhas Are Joining PMC Wagner In Lure Of Russian Citizenship

After President Putin signed a decree on May 16, 2023, simplifying Russian citizenship for foreign nationals who join the war, Gurkhas are joining PMC Wagner for the lure of Russian citizenship.

In a development that can be considered a fallout of dwindling job prospects in Nepal and a new recruitment policy in India, Nepali citizens are joining the Russian Private Military Company (PMC) Wagner group as mercenaries. 

Some of them have even retired from the Nepal Army. And their eyes are on the citizenship that Russian President Vladimir Putin is offering foreign fighters. 

The Nepal government has been caught off guard as it doesn’t have any bilateral pacts with Russia, and the Nepal Embassy in Moscow has been claiming that the youngsters are going in their “personal” capacity. 

Over a dozen Nepali youths are getting trained in handling weapons and fighting. This comes as President Putin signed a decree on May 16, 2023, simplifying the process of obtaining Russian citizenship for foreign nationals who join its ranks in this war, an offer that is too hard for Nepali youngsters to resist, with the unemployment rate at 11.12 percent.

With Russia suffering heavy losses in the self-initiated war against Ukraine, it offers fast-tracked citizenship to foreigners who enter a year-long contract with the Russian Army in what the Kremlin calls a “special military operation.” 

To sweeten the deal, Russia is offering simplified Russian citizenship to the family members of these foreigners as well. 

“This is a concerning situation. The Nepal government is not able to do anything about it as they have gone in an individual capacity,” strategic analyst Major General Binoj Basnyat (retired) from the Nepal Army told the EurAsian Times. 

He adds: “If Nepalese citizens are part of the military forces of a sovereign nation, it has to be part of the government’s foreign policy, or there has to be a Memorandum of Understanding or a treaty with the other country. No such instruments are in place in this case.” 

He maintained that the Nepal government needs to address it at the earliest. 

If we don’t die in one year, we can live here: Nepali Youth

Several videos have surfaced on social media sites like Tiktok, Telegram, and YouTube for the past few weeks, showing Nepali youths joining the Russian Army. 

At the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, Putin has just revealed Russia’s strategy for ending the Ukraine conflict.

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