ERR in Ukraine: Journalists come under fire near Siverskyi
ERR correspondents Anton Aleksejev and Kristjan Svirgsden remain in eastern Ukraine, where they are continuing to report directly on events in the region. On Tuesday they attempted to reach the town of Siverskyi, but had to abandon their plans and stop a few kilometers short of town.
From where we stopped, you could see that the town was under heavy fire, and many buildings were already burning. After 15 minutes of lying on the ground under fire, we decided to leave this terrible place. All the moreso as fragments from a cluster munition were flying relatively close by already.
"This has been the prevailing situation here in recent weeks," said Volodymyr, a Territorial Defense fighter in Bahmut. "Fierce battles are being fought in that area; this has been a regular occurrence here lately."
Volodymyr and his comrades-in-arms are local members of the Territorial Defense Forces of Ukraine. Things are still quiet at their positions.
"They are firing continuously near us," he said. "We see this shooting from our positions. Our position hasn't been hit yet. Missiles, artillery. We've seen planes as well. Everything is being used against us. The situation is getting worse. A month ago, things were totally quiet here; we couldn't hear the sounds of battle. Now things are getting increasingly intense by the day."
A hundred meters away from Volodymyr's control point, locals were weeding a field. As it turned out, the field belongs to a local nursery, which is also the last remaining source of income in the area.
"The factories are closed — everything is closed — and bombs are being dropped somewhere," Yulia said. "There are no jobs anymore, which is why we have to look for something around here. I have a small child at home, and I want an income and positive emotions for myself. These are what I gain from working here together with people like me."
The nursery grows young apple, cherry and apricot trees. Even the war has yet to disrupt the nursery's work.
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Editor: Aili Vahtla