Nepal has suspended the issuance of work permits for its citizens seeking employment in Russia following the deaths of at least 10 Nepali mercenaries reportedly fighting for the Russian army in Ukraine, Reuters reported.
The Nepali government has formally requested Russia to cease the recruitment of its citizens in the Russian military and to ensure the safe return of all Nepali citizens. Additionally, it seeks compensation for the families of those who lost their lives.
Foreign Minister N.P. Saud, in a statement to the state-run RSS news agency, mentioned that nearly 200 Nepalis were believed to be working in the Russian army, with about 100 currently reported missing.
Kabiraj Upreti, a director at the Department of Foreign Employment, emphasized that the temporary halt on labor permits to Russia aims to protect Nepali citizens and will remain in effect until further notice. “This is for the safety of our citizens,” he told Reuters.
The Nepal government has also halted work permits for employment in Ukraine.
Nepali migrant workers are required to obtain government-issued work permits for civilian jobs abroad, which provide them with state support in emergencies and compensation for their families in case of death.
The Russian embassy in Kathmandu has not responded to Reuters’ requests for comment on the issue.