Russians buy last items from H&M and Ikea as stores prepare to exit country after invasion of Ukraine

Shoppers in Russia have been snapping up items for the final time from H&M and Ikea, which are about to leave the country following the invasion on Ukraine.

Sweden-based H&M and Netherlands-based Ikea paused sales in Russia after the military operation began.

Both outlets are unloading their stocks of clothing and furnishings as they wind down operations in Russia.

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People at the Moscow shopping centre Aviapark said they were "very hurt" H&M is leaving, but "will start looking at Russian brands".

Ikea's sales are online only, while the racks and shelves were stocked with plenty of items at the H&M store in the Russian capital.

Nearby shops were closed, including Zara, Oysho, Bershka, Pull&Bear and Uniqlo, while New Yorker, Finn Flare, Marks & Spencer and Mango were open.

Workers will be made redundant as H&M and Ikea scale down business in Russia.

H&M said 6,000 employees will be affected and it was working on details of offering continued support in the coming months.

Ikea said in June that many workers will lose their jobs and it has guaranteed six months of pay for them, as well as core benefits.

It said this week it has 15,000 workers in Russia and Belarus - but it has not confirmed how many face being made redundant.

H&M Group CEO Helena Helmersson said last month: "We are deeply saddened about the impact this will have on our colleagues and very grateful for all their hard work and dedication."

Many Western companies promised to leave Russia after it sent troops into Ukraine, taking months to wind down operations and often selling holdings to Russian firms.

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McDonald's sold its 850 restaurants to a Russian franchisee owner, who has started to reopen them under the name Vkusno & tochka.

Some companies have remained in Russia or are partially operating.

French-owned home improvement retailer Leroy Merlin has kept open its 112 stores in Russia - while Pepsi, Nestle and Johnson & Johnson are supplying essentials like medications and baby formula.