Refugees from Donbas as seen by the volunteers

Recently, Facebook posts have become more frequent about the fact that those who have come from the eastern regions act somehow strangely, they are rude and dissatisfied with everything, even though they themselves have always been the least politically active citizens of Ukraine. 

Ukrainian volunteer francevna1 shares her impressions of speaking with the refugees: 

My impressions from the Donetsk guests

Recently, Facebook posts have become more frequent about the fact that those who have come from the eastern regions act somehow strangely, they are rude and dissatisfied with everything, even though they themselves have always been the least politically active citizens of Ukraine.

The same on Radio Vesti – Gonopolskiy stated that the citizens of the eastern regions are traitors that voted at the referendums for the PRD and PRL, and now they want something, coming to central and western Ukraine, and are behaving audaciously and without any reservations.

It all seemed like yet another propaganda loop with the intent to make spark animosity among Ukrainians and draw a border: here are the Ukrainians, and here are the citizens of eastern regions – so different that there can be no talk of mutual understanding. And in such a way that when faced with the choice as to where to run from war, the citizens of eastern regions would not choose Ukraine.

Who needs this? I think everyone knows, I shouldn’t bother naming names. One state in the world is ready to pay good money for the Ukrainians’ hatred towards each other and eliminate everyone and everything that interferes with satisfying its imperial ambitions and sickly superiority complex.

I will admit it: I have always regarded people from Donetsk, Luhansk and Mariupol with caution – because it was the eastern, densely-populated cities that made sure the Donetsk government, Yanukovich included, won the elections. But I was taken aback by the loud claims on social media about the difference between the “eastern” people and us, the “central” and “western” ones.

Therefore, when we got a call from the social protection headquarters, and asked to provide temporary accommodation to a family from Kramatorsk (Donetsk oblast), I told my husband: well, here is an opportunity to see four ourselves who these people from “eastern regions of Ukraine” are.

We didn’t get a family, but two friends, women, as it is difficult to run from Kramatorsk – the daughter might come, and the husband will probably not – the local “government,” essentially, bandits, are not letting men leave the city.

To be frank, my first impression was not very pleasant – the women (Valya and Anna) turned out to be rude, especially Anna – she passed by me as if I were a lamppost, I think she didn’t even greet me. They went up the house, on the way, when I tried to find out how it would be easier for them to come in and where to put their clothes, they replied with one-syllable words or simply kept quiet. Overall, my amicability was encountered with stony faces and silence.

Feeling slightly uncomfortable, I led them to the room I had prepared. Valya and Anna silently surveyed the room, they spoke only to the representatives of the social service, I was being overtly ignored.

I felt like a shopkeeper who was trying to impose my goods onto tourists for a speculative price. When the social worker asked – is the space agreeable? and Anna, looking at me, said: “All right, we accept your conditions,” I though I heard wrote: what kind of conditions? I am providing accommodation for free to people who need it – that’s it.

I admit a thought passed in my head: I’ve really done it now!

The social workers left and we got to talking – I had to show them around.

What can I saw? 30 minutes later, I was facing absolutely different people – great people, smiling and amiable, they praised everything, they like everything. They kept repeating they felt uncomfortable with taking up our space, they offered help – overall, they “thawed.”

They said they never imagined that there were such people here. They thought I was forced to provide accommodation (for them, it seems, this is possible) or had been paid a lot of money – they could not grasp that I was doing it by choice.

A real information war is underway where they came from: they knew that people in central Ukraine hated the Donetsk people, that horrific Banderites are standing on the roads to Kyiv – those from Maidan, with rifles, to shoot at people from Donbas.

“Well, I’m from Maidan,” I say. “I am the head Banderite, look…”

When the village head and his wife brought them half a sack of potatoes and a bag of various foodstuffs, they were shocked. They thought they would have to hide the fact that they are from Donetsk oblast, it turned out to be the complete opposite. The words “we are form Kramatorsk” had the same effect on people – they all wanted to help.

In the evening Anna told me: “You know, when I tell my guys how we were greeted here, nobody will believe me.”

They told us what the PRD is: the population is more or less divided in half into those who work and those who don’t. The latter earn money by helping the local bandits, with the active support of the Russian mercenaries, “Cossacks” and Chechens to cleanse “their” territory. The passivity of the first half is explained with the abundance of idiots and lack of faith in the fact that something can be changed. This is the PRD.

I am addressing Ukrainian xenophobes, Russian trolls and provocateurs! Enough bull about “audacious Donetsk” and “treacherous Luhansk.”

You don’t see enough manners and Ukrainian language? Do you know what kind of hell they came from?

Fear is hiding beneath their cautiousness and rudeness – fear of the reaction they imagine for themselves on our part which they have been convinced of since 2004 – with Yanukovich’s electoral technologies, and which continues until now.

If you are real Ukrainians – get your asses off the sofa and call the headquarters for social protection of the population or the Kyiv contract centre – take the people, for as long as you can.

Tomorrow you may end up in the same situation. You will be fleeing with your children to the unknown from the war Russia has started for us, and hope that some compatriot would accommodate you.

If we want to withstand and win, mutual help and support is paramount, regardless of whether they are refugees from Luhansk, Mariupol or Crimea.

And, by the way, it is improbably that stupid social media posts can divide us – we are not that stupid.

The guests from Kramatorsk arrived three days ago, but they have already found work. I searched the Web, got a lot of vacancies, thankfully their specialty is in demand – decorator and painter. Tomorrow they are going to work. They are already looking for permanent accommodation.

I hope they succeed.

Many refugees from Donetsk oblast turned out to be rude, machinators and lovers of free passes 

And these impressions about what was seen in Crimea were published in the group SIMFEROPOL IS OUR CITY on Vk: 

Unfortunately, many refugees from Donetsk oblast turned out to be rude, machinators and lovers of free passes.

The Simferopol citizens who decided to aid the “desperate” citizens of Donbas, who came to Crimea, where they were provided with accommodation in hotels and vacation bases for free, are shocked by their very low level of culture and behaviour.

As it turns out, many “refugees” are not fleeing bullets, but want to have fun at the seaside with all the consequential riots and drunken parties.

In Simferopol city centre we meet with volunteer Inna, who is accommodating refugees in “Artek” hotel, after which they spread throughout Crimea.

“Yesterday there was an insane scandal,” says she on the way to the hotel. “A bus came in the middle of the night. The people were offered to go to Bakhchisaray and live there. But some were appalled by this situation, they said: ‘We thought we would be living by the sea, and you’re sending out to the mountains.’ The conflict was blown to such proportions that we were forced to call the police. These ‘refugees’ offended us and accused us of hoodwinking them.”

“Wow, and does this happen frequently?” I ask.

“Scandals are all right, but sometimes wondrous things happen,” says Irina. “A ‘refugee’ placed in Sevastopol calls me: ‘My hotel room is on the sunny side – it’s hot. Move me to a room with air conditioning’.”

“Are their living conditions harsh?”

“It seems the people don’t understand that there are some norms, according to which we accommodate them,” sighs Inna. “A family came – two children and a husband with a high-maintenance wife. Of course, we will place the man with the men, and the women and children – in the women’s room. And they started a scandal because of that.”

Meanwhile we approach the hotel. An embellished Daihatsu jeep is parked nearby. “Here. A car belonging to Donetsk refugees,” concludes Inna.

People are standing literally on suitcases on the first floor. These are the ones who have just arrived. They came with what they could. They don’t want to speak, they are rude – it seems, they are tired from the journey.

Some of the refugees are satisfied in the Simferopol “Artek” hotel.

“So they separated us from the men, so what? We’ll survive,” says one of the Slovyansk citizens. “At least it’s clean, fresh linen, there is a shower, they feed us well. Yes, we have to clean our own rooms and take out the trash, but I don’t see anything bad about that, maybe it is right.”

While we are talking, screams sound from the corridor of the hotel.

“So I didn’t take it out?” A man shouts at his pregnant wife.

“What did you take out?!” She asks.

“You need help, you sick bitch!” The man shouts.

“And you’re a coward! You should go to war and not flee! A man!” The man explodes in anger and leaves for her room.

“War?” The man asks in surprise. “Screw it all to hell!”

Meanwhile a drunk woman runs out of the women’s toom.

“Where is that idiot?!” She shouts. “He made my girl so nervous, we had to give her valerian!”

We glance inside the room, the woman really is sitting on the bed. Her face is pale, her gaze is fixed, there is a stench of alcohol. We leave.

We encounter the volunteer and ask her what she is doing there now. “We bring what we can,” says Inna. “I bought them bread and lemonade and some plastic glasses yesterday with my own money. As soon as I brought the lemonade, they grabbed it and started drinking from the bottle. No conscience at all. I couldn’t buy two literes for each of the fifty people.”

Source: Argumentua

Translated by Mariya Shcherbinina

One thought on “Refugees from Donbas as seen by the volunteers

  1. These kind of stories are harmful to Ukrainian unity and shouldn’t be run. Work hard at understanding the differences instead of insulting.

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