While many women and children are fleeing the Ukrainian capital, the men have no choice but to stay behind and enlist in militias to defend Kiev against the Russian invasion that began Thursday morning.
• Read also: ‘There is no attack’: Russians blind to war in Ukraine
• Read also: [EN DIRECT] Russian invasion: second day of fighting in Ukraine
Olga Rogoza’s husband, a computer scientist by profession, is one of those citizens who took up arms.
“He checked into Home Defense. Since [jeudi] evening, he patrols the streets of Kiev with a Kalashnikov in hand, ”said the mother of two children, in an interview Friday at LCN.
Olga Rogoza’s brother, who also remained in Kiev, told her that he had never seen so many men in the city.
“It’s a city of men today, all armed, watching the streets and ready to welcome the Russians and kill them,” she said.
The Ukrainian explained that the population feels a strong hatred towards Russia.
“It’s hatred right now against the Russians. It’s the hate we all feel,” she admitted.
Live day to day
Olga Rogoza’s life, like that of millions of Ukrainians, changed overnight.
“It’s incredible. When I think of my previous life, it seems to me that it has already been two months. It’s the second day, but the life that was before seems very far away,” she said.
“All the plans we had two days ago fell through, it’s over,” added Ms. Rogoza.
The French teacher at the National Linguistic University of Kiev hopes “that it will end as soon as possible”.
She admitted that it is however difficult to remain hopeful.
“Logically, I understand that there may be no way out. Kiev is almost surrounded by the Russian army […]. But at the same time, when I see people so determined to resist, I hope all the same, I hope that they will not succeed the Russians, ”she said.
If she currently lives “hand to mouth”, Olga believes that an intervention by Western countries would allow Ukrainians to regain hope.
“I have no more projects at the moment. The big plan is to resist, resist for at least a few days and then after, I don’t know, after maybe the West will help us,” she said.