By Rebecca McGirr
As the intense and horrific conflict continues to unfold in Ukraine, Enniskillen photographer Ronan McGrade, travelled to the Ukrainian border to document the devastating refugee crisis.
Ronan, whose day to day job would involve capturing the local Fermanagh news scene and snapping wedding photos went to photograph large numbers of people, mostly women and children, crossing from Medyka into Poland as they took their first steps into an uncertain new life.
One of the images Ronan captured is of a Ukrainian woman shouting ‘Putin! Putin! Putin!” her face expressing sadness, heartache and anger as she has had to leave behind her home and everything she has known.
Exactly a week after the Russian invasion began the UN estimates that up to a million people have felt forced to leave their homes.
Thousands have passed through the major Medyka crossing and into the Polish town of Przemysl.
Many families have been torn apart from the crisis, with fathers, brothers and husbands being forced to stay as men aged 18 to 60 are not allowed to leave Ukraine in case they are called upon to fight.
Speaking to The Fermanagh Herald, Ronan described the scenes at the border.
He said, “It was harrowing to see people coming across the border on foot because it was mainly women and children and they had all their possessions in their hands so some people were carrying shopping bags full of clothes and other items and then they maybe had a child in their other arm, other mothers were wheeling children along with their belongings in shopping trolleys, so they were obviously grabbing what they could and fleeing for their lives.”
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