Families demand trapped soldiers be freed in eastern Ukraine

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Hundreds of protesters have gathered outside the office of Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko in Kyiv, demanding action be taken to free an unconfirmed number of soldiers trapped by separatist fighters at a border crossing in the Luhansk region.

The demonstraters, made up mainly of family members of the soldiers, have voiced what they think should be done to solve the situation.

One woman at the protest said she wanted her “husband and his platoon to receive reinforcements. They’re completely surrounded and the Russian separatists have several rocket launchers. There’s nowhere to hide.”

The trapped Ukrainian soldiers have kept in close contact with their families by telephone.

Euronews’ correspondent in Kyiv managed to speak with one of the men and said that “the Russians have been killing” his colleagues and they have been told to be “ready for an artillery bombardment. There is a lack of ammunition, fuel and food,” he added.

The Ukrainian government has said they are trying to find a solution to the crisis.

“Ukraine’s president has said the problem will be solved. There are many issues being discussed -rotating the soldiers, sending military aid. I simply can’t comment of the specifics right now,” said Yevhen Dobyrak, a defence representative from the office of the Ukrainian President.

Several protesters have held talks with the Kyiv government over the plight of their family members.

There have been unconfirmed reports that a total of three military brigades are trapped.

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