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Ukraine village celebrate liberation from Russia, Population down from 1,000 to 180

Ukraine village celebrate liberation from Russia, Population down from 1,000 to 180

Ukraine: After eight months of Russian occupation, the village of Pravdyne was liberated by Ukrainian soldiers. The village had around 1,000 residents before the war and now has only 180.

It was one of the first villages captured by Moscow's forces when their invasion started in late February. Located around 50 km northwest of Kherson, the small village is in the middle of an agricultural plain.

On Friday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky declared Kherson liberated and "ours". Russia said it pulled back over 30,000 troops from the southern region. Residents were seen reacting with happiness.

After Kyiv's forces liberated the village, Pravdyne carried the remnants of war time. Several buildings have roofs blasted off and many homes have been destroyed entirely. Debris of anti-mine parts and explosives are found across the fields, reported AFP.

One of the residents, Viktor told AFP that the occupation came with a lack of food. He said residents accepted sweets and canned foods from Russian soldiers because they did not want to die of hunger. The 44-year-old added that many Russian soldiers were just sitting around and did not want to fight. "They were not very happy to be here and not with their families."

His wife Svitlana Galak said she cried "tears of joy" after seeing Ukrainian soldiers because she was relieved. Their daughter was killed in a bombing raid on the village.

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TAGS:UkraineRussiaMoscowUkraine warKyivPravdyneKherson
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