Local Ukrainians share update on current state of Russian invasion

Mark Kalinskiy and Anastasiia are a part of a Ukrainian group together in Tallahassee, and both share similar concerns as their families lay low amid the chaos.
Published: Mar. 1, 2022 at 10:31 AM EST
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - The Russian invasion into Ukraine came as no surprise to Anastasiia Vlasenko, who said threats of this war have been looming for years. However, she said seeing those claims unfold now is heartbreaking.

“Russians are targeting orphanages, children’s hospitals and birthing centers, so they are targeting children,” said Vlasenko. “I think this is not just crime against Ukrainians, but this is a crime against humanity.”

With family still hunkering down in Ukraine, Vlasenko joined dozens of people at the Florida State Capitol over the weekend protesting the war in her country. She said although Ukraine is much smaller than Russia in size, her people are strong and the strength they’re showing throughout this situation is unprecedented.

Anastasiia said over the past few days she’s seen Ukrainians standing up and making huge sacrifices to protect their land.

“People just walk together in large crowds and block the roads just with their bodies so that tanks cannot proceed,” she said.

Mark Kalinskiy and his wife also have family in Ukraine. He and Anastasiia are a part of a Ukrainian group together in Tallahassee, and both share similar concerns as their families lay low amid the chaos. Kalinskiy said many of his friends are choosing to stay in Ukraine, and are lining up to join guard posts.

Both Mark and Anastasiia said they’re appreciative of all of the support from the United States and surrounding countries, and that in the end, Ukraine will prevail.

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