Bucha City Council, photo by the BBC

Due to the large flow of information, it is now difficult sometimes to follow developments. At one point it was reported that Bucha got under control of Ukraine’s forces. But as we learned from the locals, the video, which has already spread on many news channels with allegedly abandoned Russian military equipment, was misinterpreted. Russian occupants did not leave it – they hide it in the yards of civilians, and they themselves hid in the houses of civilians.

It also became known that on Tuesday evening, March 15, Russian soldiers raiedadministrative building of Bucha City Council and captured its employees and volunteers. Today, this afternoon, the Bucha City Council announced that hostages were released and they returned to their relatives.

As Kateryna Ukraintseva reported on the Espresso channel, Russian troops occupied Bucha on March 5, and it remained so on March 15. As we clarify the locals, it remains occupied by Russians on March 16.
Here is more from her interview about the events in Bucha.

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She says that the first evacuations were supposed to take place on 9 March, but Russian occupiers did not let the first evacuation buses come through into Bucha even though many people waited for them. Therefore, the first evacuation took place on 9 March, but only with people’s own cars. The Buchans, the car owners gave lift to everyone they could, so a very large number of evacuees left on 9 March itself, but those were cars only. Many came from remote areas that were dangerous to return to – Lisova Bucha, Bucha Kvartal, residential complex “Nova Bucha”. But nevertheless, under the conditions, with the complete failure of the evacuation, the Bucha city council provided space in bomb shelters and basements for them. They were provided with food and all necessities to wait for the next train of buses. and on 10 March a massive evacuation took place – both by buses and cars time.

Kateryna Ukrainseva also pointed out that a number of media outlets had spread incorrect information that Bucha allegedly being liberated from Russian army.

Bucha is occupied by Russia, Russian servicemen, the Kadyrov army. It has been under occupation since 5 March and till date now, 15 March, we’re on actual day ten of the occupation.

According to her, on 5 March, Russian occupiers invaded the “Stikolka” area and lashed out with major cruelty, shooting civilians, forcing people to sit in basements, not giving them the opportunity to just get out of these basements, even to warm up some food, or go somewhere to get food for children in need.

“it was but hell. For Sikolka it was hell! “-emotionally added Ukraintseva.

The hell continued, accorfing to her, when Bucha got cut from any water and power supply and any mobile communication on 6 March. She also added that right now Bucha is under actual blockade, because it is impossible to reach Bucha via any “green corridors”, to deliver any humanitarian support.

“That is why I address the whole of Ukraine, the entire community that the situation on our hands is this: people in remote areas of Bucha do not know about the evacuation. They are scared of openly walking the streets of Bucha, because all of Bucha is occupied, checkpoints are all over Bucha.” – said Ukraintseva

She also told that at first Russian occupiers entered private sector, checking documents, looking for weapons, questioning who has served in the ATO [Anti-Terrorist Operation that started in 2014], looking for military uniforms, whether people have drones. Then they have started checking apartment buildings.

“Those apartments where people opened their doors, they came in to check everything. Most people already left , so they took the abandoned power generators in the basements, they took the tools, the power-saw. They enter the yards in two APCs and a tented truck, they disembark, come in in [brigade] numbers, they cut through the people’s doors,

Then people learn from someone else that Russians have broken into their apartments!

Kateryna Ukraitseva

She added that people who are mobility-impaired, less mobile groups of people – they are in fact now in the occupied Bucha, unable to reach the evacuation site and can only be picked up by ambulances.

“And this is the most dire problem! Too many people we are unable to reach. Too many messages addressing me personally, about retirement-age people, very old folks, unable to get food, water, left alone and beyond our reach. This is just disastrous! We beg, we shout, and we tell everyone that Bucha is under complete occupation, that it is blocked! That it needs help! Lonely old people in remote areas are in dire need of help! We ask the international community, the Red Cross, for this help, we beg for help! “

Ukraintseva added that she sees no other way than to escorts through the “green corridors”, escort the State Emergency Service, ambulances, the Red Cross. She added that now there is virtually no hospital left in the city – Russian occupiers have completely blocked and invaded the hospital. Doctors who evacuated did not want to cooperate with the occupiers. The occupiers also took all the ambulances. There are also no one now left in the city to put out fires, because this is it – these services are just not there anymore.

“In fact, there are still a few individuals who still make the heroic effort somehow, to support the evacuation-related communication – the mayor himself and his deputies, the secretary of the council – who deal with evacuation matters. But it is impossible to make sure the city functions normally under the full occupation. Yet we must now take care at least to save the people remaining there.” – said Ukraintseva.

On February 24, Russia attacked Ukraine. Currently, this is the 21st day of the full-scale Russian war against Ukraine. We continue to follow the development of the situation. If you have information about Russian troops movement or any other information you want to share with us, email us via [email protected] or text in telegram on @JavelinSt. For particularly sensitive data – reach out, we will send more encrypted channels.

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