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Help Without Borders: 4.05

Watch the latest episode of TVP World’s Help Without Borders – a show dedicated to refugees from Ukraine, to learn about their stories, the volunteers, charities, and organisations providing humanitarian assistance.

Volodymyr Runets, a Ukrainian journalist from Kyiv, discussed the situation of civilians in Ukraine. Unfazed by the air raid alarm going off in the city during the interview, Runets stated: “Like millions of other fellow citizens, I’m accustomed now to hearing the alerts. When we speak about missiles strike, it’s not much use hiding in the basement, because you’ll get buried under the cement blocks.”

The journalist spoke about the situation of the internally displaced persons. A lot of people fled their hometowns, left everything behind and headed westwards – millions reached other European countries, but many are still in Ukraine, he said. “Most of them are based in western parts of Ukraine that are considered relatively safe, but from what we heard yesterday, for example, the Transcarpathian regions were hit for the first time by missiles. Fortunately, no civilians were injured in that strike, but across the country there are loads of situations where civilians get hit by Russian missiles launched either from Crimea, aircraft or warships that are still on the Black Sea,” stated Runets.

A lot of people are now coming home and trying to resume their routines, he said, pointing out that millions of people lost their jobs because of the war.

Runets spoke about the humanitarian corridors established in the city of Mariupol. ”As far as I know, as of yesterday, eighteen buses full of people managed to evacuate to the Ukrainian-controlled area in Zaporizhzhia. On the way, there were some delays which of course provoked concern,” said the journalist. “When only three out of the eighteen buses came to Zaporizhzhia, we were wondering where the rest were and what happened to the people on board those buses.” He said that one young woman was taken off the bus by the Russian military under the suspicion of being a soldier. “She’s been placed in one of the so-called filtration camps,” he stated, adding that hundreds of Ukrainian men who attempted to leave areas outside of the government control shared a similar fate. “The state is trying to do what they can. They’re trying to draw in some international attention,” he commented.

Runets concluded by pointing out that no information coming from the Russian sources was certain. Asked about whether the people who left Mariupol for Russia did so voluntarily, he replied: “We’re not sure what is happening. Everything that Russia is doing is behind the iron curtain of Russian propaganda.” He stated that to his knowledge, about 500,000 people were forcibly displaced from their homes and sent to Russia – among them were families of his work colleagues, who were currently detained in very distant locations in the Russian Federation with no documents, money or telephone connection to their loved ones.

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