Distressing claims of ‘forced sterilisation of women’ in Russian care homes

News

Disabled women are being forced into having sterilisations to stop them having children, a shocking investigation has claimed.

At least 10 women have been coerced into having the life-changing surgery in just one care home in Russia, the official investigation alleges.

And a charity, supporting women, claims the practice is widespread across the country.

One alleged victim Lyudmila Guseva told local media: “They despoiled us, sterilised us. Now we cannot give birth.”

“I live in a boarding house, where the women were sterilised.

“I want to have a family and give birth to a child. But now I cannot give birth.”

One woman has alleged that she was threatened with a move to a strict mental health institution if she refused to go under the knife.

Another claimed to have been told children of disabled women were “not needed”.

Of 10 women at a care home in Yekaterinburg allegedly forced to undergo sterilisation, one died after complaining of “severe pains” following the surgery.

One care home resident Anna Bakhteyeva claims she was “forced” to sign papers for a two-in-one abortion and sterilisation as she was planning marriage to her boyfriend Vladimir.

There were also claims of forcible sedation ahead of the procedures.

Olga Yegorova, 40, from Yekaterinburg, alleges that she was forcibly sterilised in 2008.

She claims to have been told: “You are already ill, why do you need to have children?”

A regional ombudsman admitted there had been complaints and that medics “sought to convince” care home residents to undergo sterilisation.

“No forceful incidents were confirmed,” she said.

An official probe has been launched into the claims.

But Elena Osipova, head of Yekaterinburg Charity Fund, said the “dehumanising” practice of forced sterilisation is “common” in care homes, and covered up by the authorities.

She alleged: “They are sterilised, they are deprived of their legal capacity, they are pumped with psychotropic drugs in order to seize their property.

“And in order to independently manage their pensions. They are humiliated, they are robbed, they are raped.

“These are all the usual standard realities of care home life.

“This happens in allure homes in every district, every city, throughout Russia. And everyone is silent about it.”