ANCHORAGE, Alaska (HPD) — Two Russian indigenous Siberians were so scared of having to fight the war in Ukraine that they risked everything to take a small boat across the turbulent Bering Sea to reach the United States, he said. a senator from Alaska after speaking with the two.
The two men landed earlier this month near Gambell on Alaska’s St. Lawrence Island in the Bering Strait, where they applied for asylum.
“They feared for their lives in Russia, which is targeting minority populations for conscription in Ukraine,” Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski said Saturday during an election forum at the Alaska Native Federation conference in Anchorage.
“It’s very clear to me that these people were afraid, so afraid of their own government, that they risked their lives and took a 15-foot boat to get across those open waters,” Murkowski said.
“It is clear that (Russian President Vladimir) Putin is focused on a military conquest at the expense of his own people,” added the lawmaker. “He has one hand on the Ukraine and the other on the Arctic, so we need to keep our eyes peeled on the Arctic.”
Murkowski said he met with the two Siberians recently, but did not provide further details on when or where exactly the meeting took place or how the asylum process was going. She was not available after the forum for follow-up questions.
Murkowski’s office announced the asylum claim of the two Russians on Oct. 6, saying the men reportedly fled from one of the coastal communities on Russia’s east coast.
“The individuals were transported to Anchorage for inspection, which includes a screening and verification process, and were then processed in accordance with United States immigration laws,” a Department of Homeland Security spokesperson said in an email last week. pass.