A young girl hugs a beloved grey plush cat at the reception center for hundreds of civilians evacuated from the Mariupol steel plant, weeks after Russian troops bombed it. Nearby, a young man kissed his real grey cat, and both the man’s and the pet’s eyes were relieved by the escape.
Some 2,000 Ukrainian soldiers were trapped in the tunnels of the Azov Starr steel plant this week, including an Azov Special Forces service member who grimly posed for pictures with his sweatshirt sleeves pulled back. His missing left arm was exposed, blown off during a battle with Russian troops.
This week’s AP images continue to reveal the horrors and occasional lighthearted moments of the war, now in its eighth week since the Feb. 24 Russian invasion.
A father snapped a photo of his sons, Maxim, 3, and Dmitro, 16, on a destroyed Russian tank on the outskirts of Kyiv on Sunday, now again under Ukraine’s control Down.
Police and volunteers exhumed the bodies of civilians killed by Russian shelling in the village of Stepaki near Ukraine’s second-largest city Kharkiv, where brutal fighting continues. An elderly woman walks into a subway station used as a bomb shelter in Kharkiv, where sleeping bags and small tents line the long underground platform next to the train tracks.
A grief-stricken widow wearing a blue-yellow Ukrainian flag cries over her husband’s coffin as prominent Ukrainian journalist Oleksandr Makhov, 36, killed while fighting his country’s volunteers, at his funeral at St. Michael’s in Kyiv church.
The war is dangerously close to an end this week to facilities for mental and physical disabilities In the village of Tavriiske near the southeastern front, crews were trying to decide how to evacuate 425 residents as threatening artillery bombarded the air.
Still, as a young couple embraced in the quiet of a Kyiv park, there was still a moment of steadfast resilience and escape from war, if only briefly.