Russian forced labor workers have been forced to work in Ukraine for decades, with their wages far below those of their western counterparts, according to a new report.
The report, published by the U.S.-based Middle East Policy Council, comes amid heightened tensions between Moscow and Kiev over the Ukraine conflict.
According to the report, forced labor is illegal in Russia, but has been documented in Ukraine.
Russia began cracking down on forced labor in 2009, with the most recent major crackdown in August, when the Russian Interior Ministry cracked down on the country’s most popular social media networks and forced some 400,000 social media users to delete their accounts.
The crackdown prompted a backlash, with protesters taking to the streets in Moscow, Moscow, St. Petersburg, and other cities.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said in September that he was ready to consider a military solution to the conflict, but the Ukrainian government rejected that, and called for a ceasefire and for Moscow to refrain from further attacks.
On Monday, the Russian Defense Ministry issued a statement saying it had arrested dozens of workers and seized their equipment.
“Russia has taken necessary measures to protect workers’ rights, and we have a clear plan to ensure their safety and security,” the statement read.
The ministry said it had also detained four workers and confiscated equipment.
In September, the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry released a statement calling for an immediate end to the forced labor and said the government would provide assistance to the displaced workers.
The statement did not specify the number of the workers.
In the past, the United Nations has called for an end to forced labor.
In 2014, a U.N. expert on forced labour concluded that forced labor has become an epidemic in Russia and said that the number and severity of forced labor cases had increased dramatically in recent years.
According the report released Monday, forced laborers are generally unpaid and are often forced to stay for hours without payment.
It also noted that forced laborers often receive little compensation for their labor.
According in the report’s findings, the forced laborers receive a fraction of the minimum wage that would be earned for a Russian worker.
The researchers interviewed more than 150 workers who were employed as forced laborers and documented their conditions, including the use of electric chairs, the use by some workers of a wheelchair, and the use and abuse of sick leave.
The forced laborers received wages that were much lower than minimum wage in the West.
According on the report: The average monthly wage for forced labor was around $1.40, and about half of the forced workers worked on the construction sites, where they were paid around $600 a month.
Forced laborers also reported that many workers had to live in cramped conditions and that their work days were shorter than those in the west, where most people earn between $3,000 and $4,000 a month, according the report.
They also said they were unable to get work, due to the shortage of workers available for construction work in Russia.
A survey by the United States-based Institute for Labor Economics and Financial Analysis (ILFE) found that between 20 and 35 percent of the estimated 4.3 million forced laborers in Russia work for the state, with many of them forced to do work for state-owned companies.
The ILFE also found that the majority of the state-employed forced laborers live in the rural areas and are largely dependent on the government.
According ILFE’s findings on forced laborers, the most common types of forced laborers employed by the state are “sugar cane and rice farmers, truck drivers, truckers, and construction workers,” the report said.