Caught in the Crossfire in Eastern Ukraine

Battles in eastern Ukraine have surged anew, with the civilian population suffering dozens of deaths from ongoing rocket attacks. A collapse of peace talks in Belarus in mid-January preceded intensified fighting in Donetsk, with pro-Russian separatists making strides in capturing territory from the government in Kiev. Their main offensive is now directed at Debaltseve—a government-held railway junction once populated by 25,000 people that lies between the rebel-held cities of Luhansk and Donetsk. Almost 2,000 residents have fled in the last few days alone. Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has accused Russia of sending thousands of troops to back the rebels, while the United States and European Union threaten tougher measures should Moscow fail to rein in the separatists. Warning: Several of these photographs are graphic in nature.
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