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Civilians take cover, flee Ukrainian city as shells land

Wednesday, Jun 11, 2014 - 01:34

June.11 - Residents in the eastern Ukrainian city of Slaviansk grow fearful as fighting moves closer to the city centre and basic amenities grow scarce. Sarah Toms reports.

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Dozens of charred bicycles in the rubble of a burnt-out sports shop in Slaviansk. It's just one of many stores devastated after a week of shelling by Ukrainian troops. The government in Kiev has launched a military operation to try to to win back control of this eastern city, taken over by pro-Russian separatists in April. It's transformed Slaviansk, blowing out windows, gutting stores and burning cars. (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) LOCAL RESIDENT, KATERINA, SAYING: "In house number 44 a woman was killed. She came home, sat down on a bench and then she was blown to pieces. Her head blew into the shop and her intestines scattered all around. Two men were wounded and children have been killed. I don't know what to do with them [those who are shooting]. They should be put on trial in a court." A few days ago, residents were defiant, carrying on their lives as best they could. Now few people dare to walk in the open. Others have fled. (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) WOMAN SPEAKING ON THE PHONE SAYING SAYING: "I don't know where I'll go, or if I'll go anywhere. We have no gasoline, no movies, no electricity. Nothing. The phones aren't working and there won't be anything. Yesterday a park was bombed - everything was bombed yesterday." Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, who was sworn in on Saturday, has pledged to end the insurrection. But the rebels show no sign of surrendering and the violence is increasingly taking its toll on Slaviansk residents, who must choose between whether to stay and risk being shelled or leave with the few possessions they can carry.

Civilians take cover, flee Ukrainian city as shells land

Wednesday, Jun 11, 2014 - 01:34

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