Russia keeps recruiting ‘workers’ in Cuba

Cuban migrant workers enjoying the good life in Moscow

From our very weary Russification of Cuba Bureau with some assistance from our Bureau of Indentured Servitude and Euphemisms for “Mercenary”

Czar Vlad the Invader seems to be intensifying his colonization of Castrogonia, recruiting workers as well as mercenaries and perhaps disguising some of those mercenaries as “workers.” According to one estimate there are currently 4,000 to 5,000 Cuban migrant workers in Moscow. No statistics available on how many mercenaries might be fighting for Grand Putinia in Ukraine.

Abridged and loosely translated from Diario de Cuba

In the Facebook group “Russia for Cubans,” residents on the island can find everything from legal advice for those traveling to the Eurasian nation for shopping tourism to offers for cheap rentals or recommendations on which months are most economical to fly to Moscow.

With 41,900 members and dozens of weekly posts, the group shares glamorous photos of Russian mansions as well as beautiful landscapes of cities and countryside environments that underline the alleged beauty and luxury of Russian life. The variety of markets, the abundance of fruits and vegetables, as well as food of all kinds available in that country seem to awaken the interest of numerous Cubans, who celebrate these conditions and compare them with the hardships they experience on the island.

The administrator of “Russia for Cubans,” Vladimir Shkunov, who created it in May 2021, is also a member of another very active group with similar characteristics, “Cubans in Moscow.”

Shkunov introduces the group with a warning: “Here will be published updated information on Russian legislation for migrants, about life in Russia, about the protection of the rights of Cubans in Russia. We do not discuss political issues and are guided by the principles of Russian-Cuban friendship.” He also identifies himself as the main representative of the regional office of the city of Ulyanovsk of the Russian Society of Friendship with Cuba, affiliated with the official Cuban Institute of Friendship with the Peoples (ICAP).

In September 2023, the independent media Cubanet interviewed 11 Cubans who were part of the recruitment network of mercenaries orchestrated from Russia to bring men from the island to that country, where they were recruited by the Kremlin’s Armed Forces and sent to invade Ukraine.

According to some of those interviewed, they received a message in their Messenger inbox with a job offer in Russia. One of them, who had just completed compulsory military service in Cuba, was offered a job in construction for an impossible salary on the island. But he was struck by the fact that, in his exchange with the alleged contractor, the emphasis was on knowing his skills as a soldier.

Of the 11 interviewed by Cubanet, eight claimed to have received messages from Shkunov, a graduate of a Russian military academy, a member of the Communist Party of Russia, and who frequently travels to Cuba and attends official events at the Embassy of Havana in Moscow.

Last January, a report from the Moscow-based media MSK1 highlighted how foreign workers taking on jobs scorned by Russian residents in the capital, mainly from neighboring ex-Soviet republics, have started to give way to workers from Cuba, who ,despite lacking work permits or speaking Russian, manage to thrive.

According to the report, thousands of Cubans take on low-skilled jobs every day in both the capital and the Moscow region. Russian anthropologist and ethnologist Alexander Silantyev, consulted by the media and author of scientific articles on Cuban migration, indicated that currently there are between 4,000 and 5,000 Cuban migrant workers in Moscow.

Whole story HERE in Spanish

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