Ukraine war: ‘I feel only hate’ – villagers take up arms with no room for mercy as Russian strikes continue | World News

Former Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko couldn’t be more bullish about his country’s chances of beating back and defeating a far bigger, superior military force.

He corrects me mid-question as I ask him if it’s possible Ukraine can defeat the Russian forces.

“First of all,” he says, “it’s not if, it’s when we win.

“We will win with or without the West’s assistance because you can see how strong the Ukrainians are.

“But it will take significantly more lives and blood… and this is our decision from our partners in the West.”

Follow the latest updates on Russia’s war on Ukraine

Image sent by Alex Crawford on 7 March
Petro Poroshenko says Ukraine will win with or without the West’s assistance

“Are you ready to give us our weapons?” he asks of Ukraine’s allies.

“Are you ready to increase the sanctions?

“Are you ready to do all of this to minimise Ukrainian blood?

“Please do that, immediately.”

His is another of the many voices in Ukraine calling for the establishment of a no-fly zone over the country’s skies, as well the setting up of humanitarian corridors, so civilians can get out of the combat zone.

He took us to see a block of residential flats devastated by bombing.

“Do not believe Putin,” he told us. “Do not believe anything he says and do not be frightened by him.

“He wants to kill our women and children, and he doesn’t care.”

Key developments in the Ukraine crisis:

Ukraine says Russia keeps firing despite humanitarian deal
President Zelenskyy to make ‘historic address’ to British MPs
Ukrainian boy travels 600 miles along to escape his homeland
Russia becomes the world’s most sanctioned country
PM explains why West cannot cut off Russian gas immediately

Image sent by Alex Crawford on 7 March
This small village community just south of the Ukrainian capital was torn apart by Russian bombs a few days ago

He was speaking to Sky News as the number of Ukrainian civilians killed and injured in the war continued to rise.

We had watched 24 hours earlier, as terrified civilians trying to flee from Irpin, which is a satellite town on the western outskirts of the capital.

It came under fire multiple times as shelling killed at least eight people, including children.

Read more:
PM says ‘nothing is off the table’ when it comes to sanctions
Why has the UK issued so few visas for Ukrainian refugees?
What’s a no-fly zone and why won’t the West enforce one in Ukraine?

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Day 12 of the Russian-Ukrainian crisis saw a brief respite which allowed more families to flee, but Ukrainian officials believe there could still be as many as 4,000 people trapped in the towns of Irpin, Hostomel and Bucha.

Without humanitarian corridors, the former president is not alone in fearing that there will be many more civilian lives lost during this invasion.

They know all about civilians being attacked in Markhalivka in the Fastivsky district in the Kyiv region.

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Ex-president calls for fighter jets

This small village community just south of the Ukrainian capital was torn apart by Russian bombs a few days ago, obliterating a small street filled with houses and killing six people, again including children.

Several of the village’s young men have taken up arms to defend their community and their country.

“I feel only hate towards these people,” one of them told us. “We will never ever forgive them for this.”

Another says: “They have to close the skies… the rest of the world have to become involved and close the airspace above Ukraine.”

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