Al Jazeera Close Up

Holding on to Ukraine | Close Up

Civilians are at the front lines of Ukrainian resistance now, not only the army.

Western Ukraine’s Lviv has become a hub for people displaced by the war and trying to reach Poland.

More than two million people have fled since Russia invaded the country on February 24. Men between the ages of 18 and 60 have been prevented from leaving and told to stay and fight for Ukraine. Volunteers are taking on a range of tasks, from helping out refugees to sorting out humanitarian aid, from fighting war propaganda online to even hacking internet servers and Russian military communications.

“I can’t rationalise bombs falling in the middle of civilian areas. How does it even happen to an adult person that you grew up into someone who does just that? In the end, it all, it all comes down to you.

“Like, you always have the choice; like, do you do it or do you, are you a human being?” said Savelii Barashkov, a volunteer from Kyiv who is helping displaced people.


A film by: Raul Gallego Abellan

Local Producers: Olha Marusyn, Shvyrlo Oleksandr

Fine edits: Catherine Hallinan

Producer: Alaa Alhussan

Senior Producer: John Joe Regan

Executive Producer: Jo De Frias