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General News

TNH on the Scene as Ukrainian Refugees Return to Kyiv from the Polish Border

March 31, 2022

KYIV – The National Herald reached in Kyiv, Ukraine, today, Thursday, March 31. Many Ukrainian refugees were returning from the Polish border to Kyiv, including women and children, who can no longer bear to live away from home and their partners who were left behind to defend their homeland. Arriving at the train station, TNH witnessed men waiting with open arms for their wives and looking forward to hugging their children. On the streets, citizens try their best to experience normalcy, despite the repeated bombings in the surrounding areas.

The city resembles a heavily defended fortress with soldiers conducting thorough checks on all passers-by, asking for passports and accreditation cards. There are roadblocks made of concrete slabs, sacks full of sand, and anti-tank obstacle defenses everywhere, which is intended to delay the possible invasion of Russian forces.

Taking a walk down the street TNH met, for the most part, journalists and families who came out to get the necessary supplies before the curfew.

Volunteer Soldiers who Joined the Fight for Ukraine Talk to TNH

At the Polish border with Ukraine, shortly before reaching Kyiv, The National Herald met two volunteer soldiers, who traveled from London in order to fight for Ukraine, leaving behind their families, work, and home.

Equipped with all their ammunition, both told TNH that they are ready for anything and will do everything in their power to contribute to the withdrawal of Russian forces from Ukraine. Mike shared the reasons that led him to make the decision and travel to Ukraine and fight against the Russian forces: “Seeing the news one day I decided to come and fight. I cannot bear to see refugees. I cannot bear to see children suffer.”

Thanassis, a Greek who volunteered to help Ukraine. Photo: TNH/ Anna Sarigianni

Asked if the decision was difficult, he told TNH, “yes” because he has a 4-year-old daughter, but he had to do it for the children of Ukraine. “It was a difficult decision because I leave behind my little girl and my partner. But I made the decision with all my heart and here I am,” Mike said.

On the other hand, Dimi, originally from South America, stated that he is a former military man and believes that he can contribute to the defense of Ukraine against the Russian forces.

The above-mentioned soldiers are not the only volunteers. Staying one night in Psemis we met volunteers from all over the world. The United States, Italy, Spain, and because there is a Greek everywhere, TNH located him. Specifically, at the moment when the author was looking for someone who speaks English – which is difficult in this country – a young man offered to help.

Volunteers from around the world have come to help Ukraine fight against Russian forces. Photo: TNH/ Anna Sarigianni

When asked where he is from, he started laughing and answered in Greek, “well, how did you get here?”

This is Thanasis, who has been living in London for the last few years and ten days ago his employment contract with the company he worked for expired. So he decided to travel to the Polish-Ukrainian border in order to help those in need. “I have a lot of friends in Ukraine and Poland and I really wanted to help. Because I do not know the language and, as you have understood, they do not speak English, I offered to help carry the luggage,” Thanasis told TNH.

Read more: Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew Visits Refugees in Poland

Read more: TNH in Warsaw with Volunteers Helping Ukrainian Refugees (Pics & Vid)

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