Brit watches his wife shout “stop Putin, stop the war” in Moscow

A worker joined the protests in Moscow and filmed the events live on her phone while her husband from the UK looked on (Image: Delivered)

A Brit worriedly watched on Skype as his wife protested on the streets of Moscow for the first time after Vladimir Putin announced partial mobilization for the war in Ukraine.

The woman, who has not previously been politically active, vented her anger after plainclothes security personnel appeared to appear at her workplace to take adult men away.

She used her cellphone to film a demonstration as she joined one of the dissident shows on the streets of the capital while her husband monitored the Home Counties’ online connection.

Their videos show the chanting, police and a broad section of the opposition against Mr Putin as people joined the noisy demonstrations that led to more than 1,300 reported arrests across Russia.

The Muscovite has tried to join her husband in the UK, but the couple encountered bureaucratic obstacles that meant she had to return home after being threatened with deportation while waiting for a much-delayed spousal visa.

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Meanwhile, she and her adult son face dwindling wages and are being plundered on their savings by the state to help Ukraine’s stalled war effort, the husband said.

The 54-year-old, who asked not to be identified, told yesterday that security forces had sparked “outrage” as they followed up on the President’s announcement of partial mobilization by arriving at workplaces to pick up men of the able-bodied pick up age.

The mobilization applies to reservists, not conscripts, but critics say the wording is vague and it’s unclear how it will translate on the ground.

“They had plainclothes military waiting outside people’s workplaces and when men of the right age and category showed up, they were just taken, loaded into vans and driven away,” the man said. “It caused outrage and people left work to undertake several marches across Moscow.

“Hundreds of thousands of people are taking to the streets and they are fighting the police and rebelling, fully aware of the consequences, they could be fined or jailed and meanwhile mistreated.

“I told my wife not to go, but she wanted to make her voice heard, she screamed: ‘Stop Putin, stop the war’.

Russian law enforcement officers detain a person during an unauthorized rally after opposition activists called for street protests against President Vladimir Putin-ordered mobilization of reservists in Moscow, Russia September 21, 2022. REUTERS/Reuters Photographer

Russian law enforcement officers detain a person during an unauthorized rally after Vladimir Putin ordered a partial mobilization (Image: Reuters)

“People are really upset and there is a lot of dissatisfaction among the population, people are afraid but they are fighting back.

“The only thing they can do is protest, and while the military has the equipment, they have the numbers.

“My wife is one of those people who just can’t watch anymore.

The protests erupted after Mr Putin announced the mobilization of 300,000 reservists.

Caption: METRO ONLINE GRAB footage made available online for Metro's Josh Layton FOR THURSDAY: A Brit's wife joins protesters on the streets of Moscow after Putin's call. Copyright: Delivered

A woman at her first protest joined others who left work to attend demonstrations in Moscow (Image: Included)

Since the invasion began on February 24, Russia has instituted even harsher punishments for those who oppose the war. Anyone accused of spreading “false” information can be sentenced to up to 15 years in prison.

The UK Ministry of Defense said the mobilization was “effectively an acknowledgment that Russia has exhausted its supply of willing volunteers to fight in Ukraine”.

In Moscow, Mr Putin threatened to use nuclear weapons against the West, which he said was trying to “blackmail” us with weapons of mass destruction.

The president upped the threat level as Ukrainian forces reportedly consolidated territorial gains they had made in the northeast over the past two weeks.

“There’s a lot of unrest,” the husband said. “People have gone beyond silence and are speaking out.

“They also sneak across the borders, some hiding in the countryside to avoid being drafted by Putin. Some people are also seriously concerned that he will use nuclear weapons.’

His wife was able to return home safely, but like many of her compatriots, she is now desperately looking for a way out of the country, as the strength of anti-war feelings is reaching a new level.

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Justin Scacco

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