After the bullets and shells, it is Ukrainian red-tape causing a million refugees to suffer

As published in The Independent by Francesca Ebel

Lyudmila Shabanova says she has been forgotten by her own government. When she and her husband fled the “living hell” of Ukraine’s battle with Russian-backed separatist rebels in the town of Avdiivka, she cursed the rebels and blamed Putin for the destruction of her city.

Now in the comparative safety of the government-controlled town of Sviatohirsk, she berated the Ukrainian government for failing to support her and her family. She described how she had to abandon her home, her eyes shining with tears: “The last feeling I remember was the sensation of the shell crashing through a wall. We lived on the upper floor. Everything – the ceiling, the roof, the windows – was destroyed.”

Ms Shabanova is one of around a million Ukrainians who have become refugees in their own country since the fighting began last April. Some have fled to safer areas of Ukraine, while others have relocated just a few miles from the battleground. Traumatised and impoverished, they have found little assistance…

To read the full article, visit The Independent website.


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