As the war in Ukraine continues raging, people have been forced to flee their land and take refuge in neighboring countries. The enormous strength of the Russian army has prompted Ukraine to declare martial rule under which all-male citizens aged “18-60” are currently prohibited from crossing the border so they could fight for their country.
“In particular, it is forbidden for men aged 18-60, Ukraine citizens, to leave the borders of Ukraine,” declared the State Border Guard Service, according to CNN. “This regulation will remain in effect for the period of the legal regime of martial law. We ask the citizens to take this information into consideration.”
A woman describes being separated from her 18-year-old brother at the Polish border as men were told they must remain. https://t.co/avIMRbE7aN
— Preeta Chag (@ChagPreeta) February 28, 2022
Due to this, many families have been forced to leave their male members behind as they made their way to safety. The only thing they could do at this point is to pray for their lives to be spared in the ongoing battle between Ukraine and Russia. This heartbreakingly meant that many sons, fathers, and even grandfathers were ordered to stay back and fight against Russian aggression which has already killed over 352 civilians (at the time of publishing this article), including 14 children, and left more than 1600 people injured.
Among the mothers and children escaping Ukraine was a little boy who despite being too young to comprehend the situation was seen in tears when asked about his father. “We left dad is Kyiv,” said the boy in a heartwrenching clip before breaking down. “And dad will be selling things and helping our heroes, our army,” he continues fighting back his tears.
As mothers and children in Ukraine are fleeing to safety, men have been ordered to stay back and fight against Russian aggression. When asked about what was happening, this little boy choked back tears, saying, "We left dad in Kyiv." pic.twitter.com/D7CcbQwPNw
— CBS News (@CBSNews) February 27, 2022
“He might even fight,” notes the child with a painful expression on his face. The clip ends with him looking away from the camera as he drifts off into thought probably about his father’s well-being. Just like this little boy, there are several Ukrainian children who are left wondering if they would ever be able to see their fathers again.
Ever since the Russian invasion, fathers have been painstakingly saying goodbye to their families. One helpless man even entrusted his children to a stranger as he was not allowed to cross the border. “Their father simply handed over the two kids to me, and trusted me, giving me their passports to bring them over,” recalled the 58-year-old Nataliya Ableyeva who arrived in Hungary clutching a mobile phone number of the children’s mother she had never met.
Thankfully, the two kids were united with their mom, 33-year-old Anna Semyuk, who immediately arrived at the Hungarian side at Beregsurany from Italy. While Ableyeva was glad she was able to bring the woman and her kids together, she couldn’t help but be heartbroken about her situation. You see Ableyeva had to leave her two grown-up kids behind in Ukraine due to the mobilization decree because one of them is a nurse and the other, a policeman.
Cover image source: Twitter Screenshot | CBS News