Exclusive: Embedded with the Karpatska Sich battalion in Ukraine’s Donbas

Exclusive: Embedded with the Karpatska Sich battalion in Ukraine’s Donbas

Politics


ON THE GROUND

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A FRANCE 24 team followed the Karpatska Sich battalion as they fight to halt the Russian advance.

A FRANCE 24 team followed the Karpatska Sich battalion as they fight to halt the Russian advance. © France 24 screengrab

The Ukrainian army is determined to slow down Russia’s steady advance in the country’s eastern Donbas region as Moscow concentrates its efforts on encircling the area. Reporting from the northwestern frontline in the Donbas, FRANCE 24’s Jonathan Walsh and Amar al Hameedawi followed the Karpatska Sich battalion as they fight to halt the Russian advance.

Karpatska Sich is one of the many nationalist battalions born out of the 2014 Maidan protest movement and has now been integrated into the Ukrainian army.

The battalion is working to block Russia‘s advance in the northwest of the Donbas. Based to the south of Izum – a town now held by the Russians – this unit composed of a few hundred men has been tasked with destroying Russian armour.

Dzvin, the unit’s leader, says the West needs to do more: “There is constant artillery fire on our positions,” he said. “The tanks are firing at us too, but we are holding on. We need more anti-tank weapons. I want to send a message to all Western countries: we need help, we have weapons but we need more. Help us to defeat our sworn enemy, who is attacking the foundations of the civilised world.”

Click on the video player above to watch FRANCE 24’s report.

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