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In Ukraine, fear seems to be changing sides. In the regions controlled by the Russians and the Separatists, concern is mounting in the face of the Ukrainian army’s counter-offensive.
Journalists from France Télévisions arrive in Lyman that day, a town narrowly held by the Russians and their separatist allies, north of Donbass. The soldiers are on their guard. It is forbidden to film combat positions here, so as not to risk revealing them to the Ukrainians. Lyman is a ghost town of empty streets, overrun with fear. Most residents have left. Terrified, an elderly lady stayed behind. “I’ve always lived here, where can I go?”she wonders.
Lyman is now on the front line. The sound of artillery fire never stops. A woman leaves her house only to collect food aid. The Russians captured the city at the end of May. A man supports them. In addition to the shooting, he has a new fear: the return of the Ukrainians. After the kyiv offensive, the front is stabilizing, but even in Donetsk, the stronghold of the pro-Russian separatists, fear has set in. A neighborhood has just been bombarded by the Ukrainians.
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