‘Don’t want my family killed’: Ukrainian civilians ready to fight | Russia-Ukraine crisis News

As Russian troops transfer additional into Ukraine, many civilians in Zaporizhzhia are volunteering to to assist Ukrainian armed forces.

By the aspect of a highway in Zaporizhzhia, a metropolis in Ukraine’s east, males of all ages and backgrounds assist to construct a makeshift barricade.

As Russian troops transfer additional into Ukraine, civilians have been volunteering to assist combat alongside Ukrainian troopers, the tempo extra pressing since the Ukrainian military mentioned Russian tank columns are lower than 40km (25 miles) away.

“We didn’t invade them; they invaded us,” one volunteer instructed Al Jazeera. “He took Crimea, then he took Donbas, now he’s come to our metropolis.”

Tuesday marks the sixth day since Russia launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine. On Monday, Ukraine’s well being ministry mentioned 352 civilians have been killed up to now, together with 14 youngsters.

In line with the United Nations, greater than 520,000 individuals have fled the nation because the invasion started on February 24.

Reporting from the outskirts of Zaporizhzhia, Al Jazeera’s Charles Stratford mentioned there was a “rising variety of checkpoints” bobbing up across the metropolis. Volunteers have been overlooking these from positions hidden within the timber, as others moved tools alongside freshly dug trenches.

“I used to show maths and physics at my native college, however two days in the past the Russian military took management of my city so I signed as much as combat,” Sasha, a civil defence volunteer wearing camouflage instructed Al Jazeera.

INTERACTIVE Russia-Ukraine map Who controls what in Ukraine DAY 6

Eating places have been donating meals. Pharmacies gave the medication they may spare for the volunteers to deal with the wounded.

“We’re right here to deal with emergencies, stopping bleeding for instance. We then take them to the hospital,” a volunteer instructed Al Jazeera.

Armed volunteers are able to be taken to positions across the metropolis, and extra women and men arrive, ready to enroll to combat.

“I don’t need my household killed. I received’t permit them to march on our land. They’re the occupiers and they need to be eradicated,” one man mentioned.

“If want be, I’ll combat; give me a weapon,” a girl mentioned, crying.

A bunch of locals, younger and outdated, stuffed glass bottles with petrol to make Molotov cocktails for individuals who need to combat however wouldn’t have a gun.

“I’ve a household; I can’t do the rest to assist them. We’re trustworthy and brilliant individuals, however the scenario is darkish proper now,” an aged man instructed Al Jazeera.

The primary spherical of talks between Kyiv and Moscow ended on Monday night with no settlement. Mykhailo Podolyak, a prime adviser to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy mentioned the following assembly is predicted within the coming days.

On Monday, a Russian artillery assault in Okhtyrka, a metropolis between Kharkiv and the capital, Kyiv, killed at the least 70 Ukrainian troopers, in keeping with an area official.

Zelenskyy has known as for a no-fly zone to cease Russian bombardment, however the White Home mentioned the US will not be contemplating such a transfer.

Europe welcomes Ukrainian refugees — others, less so : NPR

African residents in Ukraine wait on the platform contained in the Lviv railway station on Sunday in Lviv in western Ukraine.

Bernat Armangue/AP


disguise caption

toggle caption

Bernat Armangue/AP


African residents in Ukraine wait on the platform contained in the Lviv railway station on Sunday in Lviv in western Ukraine.

Bernat Armangue/AP

BARCELONA, Spain — They file into neighboring nations by the lots of of hundreds — refugees from Ukraine clutching youngsters in a single arm, belongings within the different. They usually’re being heartily welcomed, by leaders of nations like Poland, Hungary, Bulgaria, Moldova and Romania.

However whereas the hospitality has been applauded, it has additionally highlighted stark variations in therapy given to migrants and refugees from the Center East and Africa, notably Syrians who got here in 2015. A number of the language from these leaders has been disturbing to them, and deeply hurtful.

“These are usually not the refugees we’re used to… these individuals are Europeans,” Bulgarian Prime Minister Kiril Petkov informed journalists earlier this week, of the Ukrainians. “These individuals are clever, they’re educated folks. … This isn’t the refugee wave we’ve been used to, folks we weren’t positive about their id, folks with unclear pasts, who might have been even terrorists…”

“In different phrases,” he added, “there may be not a single European nation now which is afraid of the present wave of refugees.”

Syrian journalist Okba Mohammad says that assertion “mixes racism and Islamophobia.”

Mohammad fled his hometown of Daraa in 2018. He now lives in Spain, and with different Syrian refugees based the primary bilingual journal in Arabic and Spanish. He stated he wasn’t shocked by the remarks from Petkov and others.

Mohammad described a way of déjà vu as he adopted occasions in Ukraine. Like hundreds of Ukrainians, he additionally needed to shelter underground to guard himself from Russian bombs. He additionally struggled to board an overcrowded bus to flee his city. He additionally was separated from his household on the border.

“A refugee is a refugee, whether or not European, African or Asian,” Mohammad stated.

On the subject of Ukraine, the change in tone of a few of Europe’s most excessive anti-migration leaders has been placing — from “We aren’t going to let anybody in” to “We’re letting everybody in.”

These feedback had been made solely three months aside by Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban. Within the first, in December, he was addressing migrants and refugees from the Center East and Africa looking for to enter Europe by way of Hungary. Within the second, this week, he was addressing folks from Ukraine.

And it is not simply politicians. Some journalists are additionally being criticized for a way they’re reporting on and describing Ukrainian refugees. “These are affluent, middle-class folks,” an Al Jazeera English tv presenter stated. “These are usually not clearly refugees making an attempt to get away from areas within the Middles East… in North Africa. They seem like any European household that you’d reside subsequent door to.”

The channel issued an apology saying the feedback had been insensitive and irresponsible.

Refugees fleeing battle from Ukraine arrive at Zahony, Hungary on Sunday.

Anna Szilagyi/AP


disguise caption

toggle caption

Anna Szilagyi/AP


Refugees fleeing battle from Ukraine arrive at Zahony, Hungary on Sunday.

Anna Szilagyi/AP

CBS Information additionally apologized after one in all its correspondents stated the battle in Kyiv wasn’t “like Iraq or Afghanistan that has seen battle raging for many years. It is a comparatively civilized, comparatively European” metropolis.

When over one million folks crossed into Europe in 2015, assist for refugees fleeing wars in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan was a lot higher. After all, there have been additionally moments of hostility — akin to when a Hungarian camerawoman was filmed kicking and probably tripping migrants alongside the nation’s border with Serbia.

Nonetheless, again then, Germany’s chancellor, Angela Merkel, famously stated “Wir schaffen das” or “We are able to do it,” and the Swedish prime minister urged residents to “open your hearts” to refugees.

Volunteers gathered on Greek seashores to rescue exhausted households crossing on flimsy boats from Turkey. In Germany, they had been greeted with applause at prepare and bus stations.

However the heat welcome quickly ended after EU nations disagreed over tips on how to share duty, with the primary pushback coming from Central and Jap European nations like Hungary and Poland. One after the other, governments throughout Europe toughened migration and asylum insurance policies, doubling down on border surveillance, incomes the nickname of “Fortress Europe.”

Simply final week, the U.N. Excessive Commissioner for Refugees denounced the rising “violence and severe human rights violations” throughout European borders, particularly pointing the finger at Greece.

And final 12 months lots of of individuals, primarily from Iraq and Syria but in addition from Africa, had been left stranded in a no man’s land between Poland and Belarus because the EU accused Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko of luring hundreds of foreigners to its borders in retaliation for sanctions. On the time, Poland blocked entry to help teams and journalists. Greater than 15 folks died within the chilly.

In the meantime, within the Mediterranean, the European Union has been closely criticized for funding Libya to intercept migrants making an attempt to achieve its shores, serving to to return them to abusive — and sometimes lethal — detention facilities.

“There isn’t a approach to keep away from questions across the deeply embedded racism of European migration insurance policies once we see how totally different the reactions of nationwide governments and EU elites are to the folks making an attempt to achieve Europe,” Lena Karamanidou, an impartial migration and asylum researcher in Greece, wrote on Twitter.

Refugees fleeing the preventing in neighboring Ukraine arrive at Przemysl, Poland on Saturday.

Petr David Josek/AP


disguise caption

toggle caption

Petr David Josek/AP


Refugees fleeing the preventing in neighboring Ukraine arrive at Przemysl, Poland on Saturday.

Petr David Josek/AP

Jeff Crisp, a former head of coverage, growth and analysis at UNHCR, agreed that race and faith influenced therapy of refugees. Like many, he was struck by the double customary.

“Nations that had been actually unfavorable on the refugee difficulty and have made it very tough for the EU to develop coherent refugee coverage during the last decade, all of the sudden come ahead with a way more constructive response,” Crisp famous.

A lot of Orban’s opposition to migration is predicated on his perception that to “protect cultural homogeneity and ethnic homogeneity,” Hungary mustn’t settle for refugees from totally different cultures and totally different religions.

Members of Poland’s conservative nationalist ruling celebration have additionally constantly echoed Orban’s pondering on migration to guard Poland’s id as a Christian nation and assure its safety, they are saying, arguing that enormous Muslim populations might increase the chance of terror threats.

However none of those arguments has been utilized to their Ukrainian neighbors, with whom they share historic and cultural ties. Components of Ukraine at the moment had been as soon as additionally components of Poland and Hungary. Over 1 million Ukrainians reside and work in Poland and lots of of hundreds extra are scattered throughout Europe. Some 150,000 ethnic Hungarians additionally reside in Western Ukraine, a lot of whom have Hungarian passports.

“It’s not utterly unnatural for folks to really feel extra snug with individuals who come from close by, who communicate the (comparable) language or have a (comparable) tradition,” Crisp stated.

However as increasingly more folks scrambled to flee as Russia superior, a number of reviews emerged of non-white residents of Ukraine, together with Nigerians, Indians and Lebanese, getting caught on the border with Poland. In contrast to Ukrainians, many non-Europeans want visas to get into neighboring nations. Embassies from around the globe had been scrambling to help their residents struggling to get via chaotic border crossings out of Ukraine.

Movies shared on social media posted beneath the hashtag #AfricansinUkraine allegedly confirmed African college students being held again from boarding trains out of Ukraine — to create space for Ukrainians.

In Poland, Ruchir Kataria, an Indian volunteer, informed the Related Press on Sunday that his compatriots bought caught on the Ukrainian aspect of the border crossing main into Medyka, Poland. In Ukraine, they had been initially informed to go to Romania lots of of kilometers away, he stated, after that they had already made lengthy journeys on foot to the border, not consuming for 3 days. Lastly, on Monday they bought via.

The United Nations Refugee Company has urged “receiving nations (to) proceed to welcome all these fleeing battle and insecurity — no matter nationality and race.”

Ukrainian fighters grease bullets against Chechens with pig fat | Russia-Ukraine crisis News

A video shared by Nationwide Guard of Ukraine reveals Azov fighters dipping bullets for use towards Muslim Chechen fighters in pig fats.

The Nationwide Guard of Ukraine has shared a video on its Twitter account that seems to indicate Azov fighters greasing bullets with pig fats, ostensibly for use towards towards Muslim Chechens deployed to their nation as Russia steps up its army assault on Ukraine.

Azov, a far-right all-volunteer infantry army unit, are ultra-nationalists who’re accused of harbouring neo-Nazi and white supremacist ideology. They first fought alongside the Ukrainian military within the east of the nation in 2014 towards pro-Russia separatists and have since been included into the common armed forces.

Within the video, which couldn’t be independently verified by Al Jazeera, a person who’s purportedly a member of the Azov fighters is seen dipping bullets into what seems to be pig fats as he addresses the Chechen fighters.

He says: “Expensive Muslim brothers. In our nation, you’ll not go to heaven. You’ll not be allowed into heaven. Go house, please. Right here, you’ll encounter hassle. Thanks on your consideration, goodbye.”

Regardless of being built-in into the official army, Azov fighters have reportedly continued to put on the Wolfsangel insignia utilized by quite a lot of Nazi divisions throughout WWII.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has referenced the presence of such models throughout the Ukrainian army as a motive for launching his so-called “particular army operation … to de-militarise and de-Nazify Ukraine”.

The Russian army in a press briefing has additionally claimed that “Nazi Battalions” kind a big a part of the resistance to their offensive.

On Saturday, Ramzan Kadyrov, the chief of Russia’s Chechnya area and a Putin ally, mentioned that Chechen fighters had been deployed in Ukraine and urged Ukrainians to overthrow their authorities.

A brief video printed by the state-backed Russian information channel RT, which it mentioned was from Friday, confirmed 1000’s of Chechen fighters gathered in the primary sq. of the area’s capital Grozny in a present of readiness to combat in Ukraine.

Kadyrov has usually described himself as Putin’s “foot soldier” – Chechen forces have beforehand been deployed in Syria and Georgia – and his phrases echoed these of the Russian chief who on Friday urged Ukrainians to stand up towards their very own authorities, which he mentioned was made up of “neo-Nazis”. Ukrainian officers strongly reject that description.