Lviv, the door to exile from Ukraine

Thousands of refugees continue to flee Ukraine. Since yesterday, other 200,000 citizens have left the country and there are already 1,200,000 people who have left their homes escaping from war. Most cross to Poland, where there are already nearly 650,000 refugees, also to Hungary, which has taken in 145,000, or to Moldova, Slovakia, Romania and other European countries.

The UN speaks of the greatest refugee crisis of the century and believes that we could reach four million displaced. A TVE team has traveled to Lviv, in Poland, near the border with Ukraine, where most of the citizens who want to leave the country go.

14 hours – RNE in Ukraine | Queues below zero to be able to buy a weapon in Lviv – Listen now

70 kilometers from the Ukrainian border with Poland, this is one of the main points to which the population goes to cross the border into the neighboring country. Thousands of people try to get to Lviv station every day, including entire families and, above all, women who throw the family behind their backs. The various NGOs are working overtime to feed, cure and shelter, but they are absolutely overwhelmed by the sheer number of people they face.

Refugees cross the tracks at the Lviv (Lviv) station in Ukraine. REUTERS REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach

Most try to leave Ukraine by train, others do not have a ticket and try by bus, but there is a lack of drivers and vehicles to meet the demand. Until now, the war has not shaken Lviv as it has in other cities of the country. So far the fighting has not yet reached, but as the days go by, concern grows about a change in the Russian offensive that will complicate the lives of the inhabitants of this area and make it even more difficult for those seeking refuge in Europe to flee. .

“People were desperate, hitting the train”

Around the station, a multitude of stories. Sasha has arrived from Kharkov and wants to reach Krakow, in Poland. Her house, she says, no longer exists, has been destroyed. Luis Javier is Mexican and has traveled 20 hours by train from Dnipro, in eastern Ukraine. “The train was very full, in fact we arrived at a city where there were many people waiting and could not upload anymore“, he explains. “We had to leave them. People were desperate, hitting the train.”

Refugees queue to board a train to Poland at Lviv station in Ukraine AFP Daniel LEAL / AFP

The vast majority of people come to Lviv to leave the country, but there are some who have just arrived to stay. Like Paul, a Canadian who says he comes to help, even has brought his own weapons and he assumes, he says, that he can die in this country. The rest flee from the death and destruction that the war is leaving behind them.

The volume of people accumulated in the city delay your goal. “Many of them will have to wait for hours or days,” explains Julia, one of the Red Cross volunteers.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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