The Russian invasion of Ukraine continues to escalate, with rising military, economic and social costs. In the last year, thousands of people have been killed in the fighting in Eastern Ukraine, with over ten thousand injured and almost one million Ukrainians displaced. Indeed, the conflict marked its one year anniversary with reports of more Ukrainian soldiers being killed.
The harshness of the conflict and the fear it instills in civilians was brought home to me last week when I got a call from a woman named Iryna. She has two small children in Mariupol, Ukraine. She complained that, not far away, Russian soldiers were gathering for what she believed was an upcoming invasion heading towards her home in Mariupol, a city that has been in the news a lot lately:
The crisis has now reached stalemate. The ceasefire brokered by Ukraine, Russia, Germany and France in mid-February is still in force, though deaths are reported almost daily among Ukrainian soldiers, civilians and rebels.
Large swaths of the industrial east, including
and Luhansk, are under the control of the rebels and Kiev fears they could be preparing to try to take Mariupol, a city of 500,000 people.
Iryna asked me if there was anything I could do to help her family escape any upcoming attacks. The sad reality was that there was nothing practical that I could offer to her.
See full details on Forbes at:http://www.forbes.com/sites/andyjsemotiuk/2015/04/07/the-ukraine-crisis-a-humanitarian-response-through-immigration/