An Update On The Ukrainian Crisis

Published November 17, 2014
Updated January 11, 2018

Political conflict rages on in Ukraine, and now for the first time since its February beginning, there are Russian troops on the ground. The annexation of Crimea by Russia led to a massive outcry from both pro- and anti-Russian groups, as have the recent “elections” of separatist leaders in a country that “doesn’t exist”.

The European Union warns Russia to “overcome this obstacle to peace” in its negotiations with Ukraine. September’s ceasefire agreement between the separatists and the Ukrainian government quickly deteriorated, leaving over 300 dead and thousands of Eastern Ukrainian citizens as refugees– 730,000+ of whom have fled to Russia. At times, it’s not even clear who is firing at whom: Russians, Ukrainian militia, or the pro-Russian separatists.

Map Of Russian Speakers In Ukraine.
Map Of Russian Speakers In Ukraine. Source: Australian Broadcasting Co


Anti-Government Protests In Kiev.
Anti-Government Protests In Kiev. Source: Sasha Maksymenko

Citizens Giving Food To Ukrainian Militia.
Citizens Giving Food To Ukrainian Militia. Source: Sasha Maksymenko

Ukrainian Citizens Place Flowers On Russian Tank.
Ukrainian Citizens Place Flowers On Russian Tank. Source: Reuters

Ukrainian Soldiers Clash With Pro-Russian Protesters.
Ukrainian Soldiers Clash With Pro-Russian Protesters. Source: Reuters

Ukrainian President Signs EU Deal.
Ukrainian President Signs EU Deal. Source: Associated Press

Protester Injured During Ukraine's Euromaidan Rally.
Protester Injured During Ukraine's Euromaidan Rally. Source: Mstyslav Chernov

Makeshift Memorial At MH17 Crash Site.
Makeshift Memorial At MH17 Crash Site.Reuters/Maxim Zmeyev

Ukrainian Volunteers Open Fire Near Donetsk.
Ukrainian Volunteers Open Fire Near Donetsk. Source: AP/Maxim Vetrov

Ukrainian Homes Destroyed By Shelling.
Ukrainian Homes Destroyed By Shelling. Source: Mstyslav Chernov

Injured Ukrainian Soldier Votes In Elections.
Injured Ukrainian Soldier Votes In Elections. Source: Reuters

Ukrainians Voting In Parliamentary Elections.
Ukrainians Voting In Parliamentary Elections. Source: Associated Press

Ukrainian Militia At Lugansk Checkpoint.
Ukrainian Militia At Lugansk Checkpoint. Source: Associated Press

Unidentified Troops Enter Ukraine By Tank.
Unidentified Troops Enter Ukraine By Tank. Source: AFP

Man Injured By Shelling In Ukraine.
Man Injured By Shelling In Ukraine. Source: AP/Getty

Woman Examines Her Destroyed Home In Donetsk, Ukraine.
Woman Examines Her Destroyed Home In Donetsk, Ukraine. Source: AP/Getty

Map Of Ukraine's Position In Europe.
Map Of Ukraine's Position In Europe. Source: Australian Broadcasting Co


Ukrainian Militia On Armored Vehicle.
Ukrainian Militia On Armored Vehicle. Source: Reuters

With souring negotiations on the price of gas running through Ukrainian pipelines and an increasingly poor quality of living for the Ukrainian people, it is no surprise that unrest would continue to develop. Still, it is unclear what the next move of the Ukrainian government will be. What happens next is anyone's guess, but Ukraine -- or at least parts of it -- is eager to stand on its own two feet, poised directly between the East and the West. The presence of Russian troops in Ukraine means that the citizens will have to continue to endure life in a country plagued by poverty and violence, but perhaps it is time, finally, to let Ukraine govern Ukraine.

Chris Altman
Chris Altman is a freelancing writer and artist based out of Brooklyn, NY.