Civilians recall terrifying attempts to escape Ukraine’s cities as Russian forces tighten grip
Ukrainian servicemen fire mortars towards Russian positions in the east Kharkiv region, Ukraine, on May 17.
Tatyana, 68, walks at a cemetery in search of her husband’s grave in the settlement of Staryi Krym outside Mariupol, Ukraine, on May 15.
Ukrainian service personnel check information inside a basement used as a command post in a village retaken by Ukrainian forces in the Kharkiv region of Ukraine, May 15.
Grieving relatives attend the funeral of a Ukrainian military serviceman, Pankratov Oleksandr, 49, in Lviv, Ukraine, on May 14.
Ukrainian serviceman and emergency workers carry the body of a Russian soldier into a refrigerated train in Kharkiv, Ukraine, on May 5. The bodies of more than 40 Russian soldiers who were found after battles around Kharkiv are being stored in the refrigerated car.
Natalia Pototska cries next to her grandson Matviy as they arrive at a center for displaced people in Zaporizhzhia, Ukraine, on Monday, May 2.
Pro-Russian troops stand guard next to a bus transporting evacuees near a temporary accommodation center in the Ukrainian village of Bezimenne on Sunday, May 1.
A man stands on the balcony of his apartment after a missile strike damaged a residential building in Ukraine’s Donetsk region on April 30.
Guterres speaks during his meeting with Zelensky on April 28.
A team member with the International Atomic Energy Agency arrives at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in Chernobyl, Ukraine, on April 26. Russian forces withdrew from Chernobyl, the site of the world’s worst nuclear disaster, in March.
Maria, 13, holds a photograph of her father, Yurii Alekseev, as she and her godfather, Igor Tarkovskii, attend Alekseev’s funeral in Bucha, Ukraine, on April 26. Alekseev, 50, was a territorial defense member who was killed by Russian soldiers, according to his family.
A couple looks at a memorial wall in Lviv, Ukraine, on April 24. The wall shows Ukrainian civilians who have been killed during the Russian invasion.
Women walk between sandbags and anti-tank barricades in Zhytomyr, Ukraine, to attend a blessing of traditional Easter food baskets on April 23.
Members of the Ukrainian Red Cross talk before moving an elderly woman to an ambulance in a bunker under a factory in Severodonetsk, Ukraine, on April 22.
A woman who recently evacuated Mariupol cries after arriving at a registration center for internally displaced people in Zaporizhzhia on April 21.
Vova, 10, looks at the body of his mother, Maryna, lying in a coffin as his father, Ivan, prays during her funeral in Bucha on April 20. She died during Russia’s occupation of the city, as the family sheltered in a cold basement for more than a month.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, right, speaks with European Council President Charles Michel during a meeting in Kyiv on April 20.
A Ukrainian serviceman stands next to a multiple rocket-launch system in the Kharkiv region of Ukraine on April 20.
Firefighters work in Lviv after a civilian building was hit by a Russian missile on April 18.
Smoke rises above Mariupol on April 18.
Women clean inside a damaged building at the Vizar company military-industrial complex in Vyshneve, Ukraine, on April 15. The site, on the outskirts of Kyiv, was hit by Russian strikes.
Firefighters work at a burning building in Kharkiv following a missile attack near the Kharkiv International Airport on April 12.
Mourners react in Stebnyk, Ukraine, during the funeral ceremony of Ukrainian serviceman Roman Tiaka. Tiaka was 47.
Ukrainian forces fire rockets toward Russian positions in Ukraine’s Donbas region on April 10.
Search-and-rescue teams remove debris after the Ukrainian army regained control of Borodianka, Ukraine, on April 6.
People wait to board a train as they flee Kramatorsk, Ukraine, on April 5.
Anna Zhelisko touches the casket of her grandson, Ukrainian soldier Dmitry Zhelisko, as it arrives for his funeral in Chervonohrad, Ukraine, on April 3. He died fighting the Russian army near Kharkiv.
Bodies lie on a street in Bucha on April 2. Images captured by Agence France-Presse showed at least 20 civilian men dead.
A Ukrainian serviceman stands with a handcuffed Russian soldier in Kharkiv on March 31.
A satellite image shows a shelled warehouse that was being used by the Red Cross in Mariupol on March 29.
A woman named Julia cries next to her 6-year-old daughter, Veronika, while talking to the press in Brovary, Ukraine, on March 29.
An armored convoy of pro-Russian troops travel on a road leading to Mariupol on March 28.
A volunteer weaves a bulletproof vest in Zaporizhzhia, Ukraine, on March 28.
A woman lights a candle during the Sunday service at a monastery in Odesa on March 27.
A Ukrainian serviceman stands in a heavily damaged building in Stoyanka, Ukraine, on March 27.
Orphaned children travel by train after fleeing the Russian-controlled town of Polohy, Ukraine, on March 26.
A man recovers items from a burning shop following a Russian attack in Kharkiv on March 25.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky addresses world leaders via video at the NATO summit in Brussels, Belgium, on March 24. Zelensky stopped short of issuing his usual request for a no-fly zone, but he did say Ukraine needs fighter jets, tanks and better air defenses.
A child holds a Ukrainian flag in front of the Taras Shevchenko monument as members of the Ukrainian National Guard band perform in Lviv on March 24.
A firefighter sprays water inside a house that was destroyed by shelling in Kyiv on March 23.
Svetlana Ilyuhina looks at the wreckage of her home in Kyiv following a Russian rocket attack on March 23. “First there was smoke, and then everything went black,” she said.
Pictures lie amid the rubble of a house in Kyiv on March 23.
A woman cleans up a room March 21 in a building that was damaged by bombing in Kyiv.
The Retroville shopping mall is seen in Kyiv after Russian shelling on March 21.
People share dinner and sing “Happy Birthday” during a celebration in Kyiv on March 20. This studio space has turned into a bomb shelter for approximately 25 artists who are volunteering to help the war effort.
Former Ukrainian Parliament member Tetiana Chornovol, now a service member and operator of an anti-tank guided missile system, examines a Russian tank she destroyed in a recent battle in the Kyiv region.
A Ukrainian serviceman stands among debris after shelling in a residential area in Kyiv on March 18.
Staff members attend to a child at a children’s hospital in Zaporizhzhia on March 18.
An elderly woman is helped by police officers after she was rescued from an apartment that was hit by shelling in Kyiv on March 15.
Firefighters work to extinguish flames at an apartment building in Kyiv on March 15.
A woman walks past a damaged window to lay flowers at a makeshift memorial for victims in Donetsk, Ukraine, on March 15.
Ukrainian soldiers take cover from incoming artillery fire in Irpin, Ukraine, on March 13.
A Ukrainian soldier surveys a destroyed government building in Kharkiv on March 13.
A mother and son rest in Lviv, Ukraine, while waiting to board a train to Poland on March 12.
A firefighter works to extinguish flames after a chemical warehouse was reportedly hit by Russian shelling near Kalynivka, Ukraine, on March 8.
Members of the Red Cross help people fleeing the Kyiv suburb of Irpin on March 7.
Civilians seek protection in a basement bomb shelter in Kyiv on March 6.
Local residents help clear the rubble of a home that was destroyed by a suspected Russian airstrike in Markhalivka, Ukraine, on March 5.
George Keburia says goodbye to his wife and children as they board a train in Odesa on March 5. They were heading to Lviv.
Ukrainians crowd under a destroyed bridge as they try to flee across the Irpin River on the outskirts of Kyiv on March 5.
People remove personal belongings from a burning house after shelling in Irpin on March 4.
People crowd on a platform as they try to board a westbound train in Kyiv on March 4.
A bullet-ridden bus is seen after an ambush in Kyiv on March 4.
People take shelter on the floor of a hospital during shelling in Mariupol on March 4.
A member of the Ukrainian military gives instructions to civilians in Irpin on March 4. They were about to board an evacuation train headed to Kyiv.
A Ukrainian child rests on a bed at a temporary refugee center in Záhony, Hungary, on March 4.
A Ukrainian soldier carries a baby across a destroyed bridge on the outskirts of Kyiv on March 3.
Residents react in front of a burning building after shelling in Kharkiv on March 3.
A Ukrainian soldier who says he was shot three times in the opening days of the invasion sits on a hospital bed in Kyiv on March 3.
People form a human chain to transfer supplies into Kyiv on March 3.
A cemetery worker digs graves for Ukrainian soldiers in Kyiv on March 3.
A mother cares for her two infant sons in the underground shelter of a maternity hospital in Kyiv on March 3. She gave birth a day earlier, and she and her husband haven’t yet decided on names for the twins.
A member of Ukraine’s Territorial Defense Forces sits with a weapon in Kyiv on March 2.
Paramedics treat an elderly woman wounded by shelling before transferring her to a hospital in Mariupol on March 2.
Residents of Zhytomyr work in the remains of a residential building on March 2. The building was destroyed by shelling.
A member of Ukraine’s Territorial Defense Forces inspects damage in the backyard of a house in Gorenka on March 2.
A Ukrainian woman takes her children over the border in Siret, Romania, on March 2. Many Ukrainians are fleeing the country at a pace that could turn into “Europe’s largest refugee crisis this century,” the United Nations Refugee Agency said.
Militia members set up anti-tank barricades in Kyiv on March 2.
People wait at a train station in Kyiv on March 2.
People shelter in a subway station in Kyiv on March 2.
Ukrainian soldiers attend Mass at an Orthodox monastery in Kyiv on March 1.
Medical workers show a mother her newborn after she gave birth at a maternity hospital in Mariupol on March 1. The hospital is now also used as a medical ward and bomb shelter.
An administrative building is seen in Kharkiv after Russian shelling on March 1. Russian forces have scaled up their bombardment of Kharkiv, Ukraine’s second-largest city.
Ukrainian emergency workers carry a body of a victim following shelling that hit the City Hall building in Kharkiv on March 1.
A woman named Helen comforts her 8-year-old daughter, Polina, in the bomb shelter of a Kyiv children’s hospital on March 1. The girl was at the hospital being treated for encephalitis, or inflammation of the brain.
Ukrainian refugees try to stay warm at the Medyka border crossing in Poland on March 1.
Volunteers in Kyiv sign up to join Ukraine’s Territorial Defense Forces on February 28.
A member of the Territorial Defense Forces loads rifle magazines in Kyiv on February 28.
A displaced Ukrainian cradles her child at a temporary shelter set up inside a gymnasium in Beregsurány, Hungary, on February 28.
Ukrainian forces order a man to the ground on February 28 as they increased security measures amid Russian attacks in Kyiv.
Smoke billows over the Ukrainian city of Vasylkiv, just outside Kyiv on February 27. A fire at an oil storage area was seen raging at the Vasylkiv Air Base.
People wait on a platform inside the railway station in Lviv on February 27. Thousands of people at Lviv’s main train station attempted to board trains that would take them out of Ukraine.
A Russian armored vehicle burns after fighting in Kharkiv on February 27. Street fighting broke out as Russian troops entered Ukraine’s second-largest city, and residents were urged to stay in shelters and not travel.
Local residents prepare Molotov cocktails in Uzhhorod, Ukraine, on February 27.
Cars line up on the road outside Mostyska, Ukraine, as people attempt to flee to Poland on February 27.
Ukrainian troops in Kyiv escort a prisoner February 27 who they suspected of being a Russian agent.
Ukrainian service members take position at the Vasylkiv Air Base near Kyiv on February 27.
A woman sleeps on chairs February 27 in the underground parking lot of a Kyiv hotel that has been turned into a bomb shelter.
An apartment building in Kyiv is seen after it was damaged by shelling on February 26. The outer walls of several apartment units appeared to be blown out entirely, with the interiors blackened and debris hanging loose.
A police vehicle patrols the streets of Kyiv on February 26.
Following a national directive to help complicate the invading Russian Army’s attempts to navigate, a road worker removes signs near Pisarivka, Ukraine, on February 26.
Ukrainian service members look for and collect unexploded shells after fighting in Kyiv on February 26.
The body of a Russian soldier lies next to a Russian vehicle outside Kharkiv on February 25.
Members of the Ukrainian National Guard take positions in central Kyiv on February 25.
People walk past a residential building in Kyiv that was hit in an alleged Russian airstrike on February 25.
The body of a school employee, who according to locals was killed in recent shelling, lies in the separatist-controlled town of Horlivka in Ukraine’s Donetsk region on February 25.
Kyiv residents take shelter in an underground parking garage on February 25.
The body of a rocket remains in an apartment after shelling on the northern outskirts of Kharkiv on February 24.
A wounded woman stands outside a hospital after an attack on the eastern Ukrainian town of Chuhuiv, outside of Kharkiv, on February 24.
A boy plays with his tablet in a public basement used as a bomb shelter in Kyiv on February 24.
Ukrainian service members sit atop armored vehicles driving in eastern Ukraine’s Donetsk region on February 24.
People in Kyiv try to board a bus to travel west toward Poland on February 24.
People seek shelter inside a subway station in Kharkiv on February 24.
People wait after boarding a bus to leave Kyiv on February 24.
Police officers inspect the remains of a missile that landed in Kyiv on February 24.
A staff member of a Kyiv hotel talks on the phone on February 24.
People wait in line to buy train tickets at the central station in Kyiv on February 24.
A photo provided by the Ukrainian President’s office appears to show an explosion in Kyiv early on February 24.
A convoy of Russian military vehicles is seen February 23 in the Rostov region of Russia, which runs along Ukraine’s eastern border.
Ukrainian soldiers talk in a shelter at the front line near Svitlodarsk, Ukraine, on February 23.
Smoke rises from a damaged power plant in Shchastya that Ukrainian authorities say was hit by shelling on February 22.
A damaged house is worked on after shelling near the Ukrainian front-line city of Novoluhanske on February 22.
Russian howitzers are loaded onto train cars near Taganrog, Russia, on February 22.
Protesters demanding economic sanctions against Russia stand outside the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Kyiv on February 21. Only a small number of protesters showed up to demonstrate.
Activists hold a performance in front of the Russian embassy in Kyiv on February 21 in support of prisoners who were arrested in Crimea. They say the red doors are a symbol of the doors that were kicked in to search and arrest Crimean Tatars, a Muslim ethnic minority.
Ukrainian servicemen shop in the front-line town of Avdiivka, Ukraine, on February 21.
People lay flowers at the Motherland Monument in Kyiv on February 21.
A couple arrives at the city council to get married in Odesa on February 20. As Ukrainian authorities reported further ceasefire violations and top Western officials warned about an impending conflict, life went on in other parts of the country.
A woman rests in a car near a border checkpoint in Avilo-Uspenka, Russia, on February 19.
A Ukrainian service member walks by a building on February 19 that was hit by mortar fire in the front-line village of Krymske, Ukraine.
Fighter jets fly over Belarus during a joint military exercise the country held with Russia on February 19.
Ukrainian soldiers stand guard at a military command center in Novoluhanske on February 19.
People sit on a bus in Donetsk on February 18 after they were ordered to evacuate to Russia by pro-Russian separatists.
Children play on old Soviet tanks in front of the Motherland Monument in Kyiv on February 16.
Ambassadors of European countries lay roses at the Wall of Remembrance in Kyiv on February 16. The wall contains the names and photographs of military members who have died since the conflict with Russian-backed separatists began in 2014.
US troops walk on the tarmac at the Rzeszów-Jasionka Airport in southeastern Poland on February 16. US paratroopers landed in Poland as part of a deployment of several thousand sent to bolster NATO’s eastern flank in response to tensions with Russia.
A 200-meter-long Ukrainian flag is unfolded at the Olympic Stadium in Kyiv on February 16 to mark a “Day of Unity,” an impromptu celebration declared by President Volodymyr Zelensky.
A woman and child walk underneath a military monument in Senkivka, Ukraine, on February 14. It’s on the outskirts of the Three Sisters border crossing between Ukraine, Russia and Belarus.
Ukrainian service members talk at a front-line position in eastern Ukraine on February 14.
Members of Ukraine’s National Guard look out a window as they ride a bus through the capital of Kyiv on February 14.
Satellite images taken on February 13 by Maxar Technologies revealed that dozens of helicopters had appeared at a previously vacant airbase in Russian-occupied Crimea.
Pro-Russian separatists observe the movement of Ukrainian troops from trenches in Ukraine’s Donbas area on February 11.
Ukrainian service members unpack Javelin anti-tank missiles that were delivered to Kyiv on February 10 as part of a US military support package for Ukraine.
Ukrainian service members walk on an armored fighting vehicle during a training exercise in eastern Ukraine’s Donetsk region on February 10.
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