What the Hell Is Going On in Ukraine?

The situation in eastern Ukraine can best be described as chaotic. While it's clear there is violence occurring between pro-Russian groups and pro-Ukrainians (who desire closer ties to Europe), not much else is clear. Photos and video from the region show streets filled with a volatile mix of protesters, police, armed soldiers, civilians, and militia, wearing widely varying uniforms (or just street clothes). Many are masked, their exact motives and backers unknown as they attack their opposition, or raid government buildings, and tear down each others' flags. Some appear to be more at play than at war, but the stakes are deadly. Dozens have been killed in just the past week alone in gun battles, fires, and beatings -- even a Ukrainian military helicopter was shot down yesterday. Gathered here are images of the chaos in Ukraine from the past week, as fears grow that violence will escalate even further.

Read more
Hints: View this page full screen. Skip to the next and previous photo by typing j/k or ←/→.

Most Recent

  • Anuar Patjane / National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

    Winners of the 2015 National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

    The winners of the 27th annual National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest have just been announced.

  • Carmen Jaspersen / AFP / Getty

    Photos of the Week: 7/25-7/31

    An alpenhorn performance in Switzerland, a portrait of Vladimir Putin made of spent ammunition from Ukraine, Prince Charles surprised by an eagle, wildfire in California, a sunset in Crimea, and much more.

  • Damir Sagolj / Reuters

    The Abandoned Fishing Village of Houtouwan

    On Shengshan Island, east of Shanghai, China, only a handful of people still live in a village that was once home to more than 2,000 fishermen.

  • Niranjan Shrestha / AP

    Nepal, Three Months After the Earthquakes

    Three months have now passed since massive twin earthquakes struck Nepal, killing more than 8,800 people, injuring more than 22,000.

Join the Discussion