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‘Nobody wants war in Ukraine’: Va. Ukrainian reacts to ongoing tension

As tensions continue to rise in the ongoing conflict between Ukraine and Russia, Ukrainians who live in the metro-Richmond area are watching closely.
Published: Feb. 21, 2022 at 5:20 PM EST
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CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. (WWBT) - As tensions continue to rise in the ongoing conflict between Ukraine and Russia, Ukrainians who live in the metro-Richmond area are watching closely.

On Monday, Russian President Vladimir Putin recognized the independence of separatist regions in eastern Ukraine and paved the way to provide them with military support — triggering threatened new sanctions from the U.S. and Europe, and further fueling fears that Russia could imminently invade Ukraine.

Igor Kedrovskyi of Ukraine, who now lives in Chesterfield, believes this could lead to the start of World War III.

“Nobody wants a war in Ukraine, I mean,” Kedrovskyi said.

Kedrovskyi has lived in the United States of America for the last six years. However, watching what has unfolded recently back home has been difficult.

“We sleep very badly,” he said. “My wife cannot sleep because every day, we call home and talk to my friends. My wife talks to family - mother, father.”

On Monday, Russian President Vladimir Putin recognized the independence of separatist regions in eastern Ukraine. Tensions are only expected to rise from the move as the U.S., and other allies fear an invasion of Ukraine could happen at any moment.

“The acceleration of troops is awful,” Kedrovskyi said.

Meanwhile, the U.S. and European Union said they would slap sanctions on those who recognize the breakaway regions as independent.

Kedrovskyi hopes Putin’s recent move is nothing more than a bluff.

“I hope it’s a game, a big game - game for money, game for sanctions,” he said. “They wanted to save their money, wanted to save Russia any global scenario and wanted to be very powerful.”

On Monday afternoon, The Kremlin said Putin ordered forces to maintain peace in eastern Ukraine, but it was not immediately clear whether or when troops would enter the country.

While there are reports of President Joe Biden and Putin tentatively agreeing to meet in a last-ditch effort to avoid war, Kedrovskyi has a message for the American people.

“Thank you very much… American government for help,” he said. “It’s only one; it’s really valuable. Ukrainian people keep saying thank you very much.”

As history unfolds overseas, the Ukrainian community in the Richmond area will band together in hopes of peace in the near future.

Copyright 2022 WWBT. The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved.

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