Protesters ‘stand with Ukraine’ across US

NEW YORK, Feb 24 (Reuters) – Demonstrators in several major U.S. cities protested the invasion of Ukraine on Thursday, calling on Russian President Vladimir Putin to end the missile and troop attack as the President American Joe Biden announced new sanctions against Russia.

Despite freezing temperatures, hundreds of protesters in Manhattan marched toward the Russian mission to the United Nations, some masked in Ukrainian flags and chanting “Stop the war.” New York City has the largest Ukrainian community in the United States.

Kyiv resident Anstasiia Yashchenko told Reuters her family and friends were the focus of her concerns as she attended the protest with her boyfriend, who flew her to New York 10 days earlier.

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“I packed everything like two suitcases and ran out of the apartment and left,” said Yashchenko, 23. She said she had hoped tensions would ease and couldn’t believe her eyes as she watched the invasion unfold early Thursday.

Thursday’s first protest took place outside the Russian embassy in Washington around 01:00 a.m. EST (0600 GMT), shortly after news broke that Russian forces had launched a massive attack on its neighbor. Read more

More protests were planned for later Thursday in Washington, Los Angeles, Houston and Denver, according to social media posts. Similar rallies were held Thursday in cities around the world.

Russia’s invasion, the biggest attack on a European country since World War II, has left many Ukrainian-Americans worried for the safety of loved ones still living in the Eastern European country.

One of those present at the Washington morning protest, which dispersed before sunrise, told Washington TV station WUSA that he begged his parents and sister to leave and get on their feet. safe for weeks, to no avail.

Dozens of Ukrainians began fleeing Ukraine to Poland and other neighboring Central European countries after Russia’s assault began on Thursday, some taking only what they could carry and leaving behind them goods and pets. Read more

Russians have also joined US protests to voice their opposition. Outside the Russian UN mission in Manhattan on Thursday, Julia Makhalova, a 34-year-old woman who immigrated to New York from Russia in 2017, said she feared Putin’s actions could escalate into full-blown world war.

“I think it’s very scary overall,” she said in an interview. “The president is literally mad.”

In Russia, the protest against the invasion of Ukraine has been suppressed. Moscow-based opposition activist Marina Litvinovich was arrested by Russian police on Thursday after calling for anti-war protests in the country. Read more

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Reporting by Julia Harte and Tyler Clifford; edited by Jonathan Oatis

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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