"A cat was named Vitya after a neighbor farmer uncle Vitya who died in the "first day of the war". That is how the locals call the terrorists' attacks which began in early May. They are telling of a woman who came to change his son on duty in a house nearby. The projectile killed both of them. An old woman approaches to a group of villagers gathered on the street where many houses were harmed, "Find my son for me, please. He went to work on July 3. Then he was wounded and taken away. Who did this? I do not know. Either army or the ones I don't know how to call... He was going to work previously but once he didn't return, only a passport and a mobile phone left after him at his working place. And you know that now a man without a passport is not a person at all. We have phoned to all hospitals but didn't find him. His name is Serhii Shovkun, he was born on 1977," the reporters telling the stories of local residents.
Semenivka village near Slaviansk suffered more than the others. The shellings here began in May and finished not so long ago. There is still no electricity and water and those who have no other shelter live in a ruined houses. The Army came in the "early days of peace" as the locals call the period of the end of the shelling. The Ukrainian troops advised us not to walk on kitchen gardens, where the grass is tall to avoid stepping on a land mine. The unexploded rounds are easier to notice on the pavement. There are a lot of them could be found on the roads. There are still no authorities in Semenivka. Semenivka residents know nothing of the food being given somewhere in the central square of Slaviansk.
"We were sitting in the cellars for two months. I called in Poltava and the relatives was surprised and said "What are you talking about? They took you all away." Perhaps if they knew that we were not moved they would not strike that hard. Nobody told us to leave. We ran away and hid in a nearby Mykolaivka but this village was also shelled soon after. We're sitting here between them firing from both sides. Bang! Bang! One party hit the town the other one hit the plant. That lasted for two months," the locals say.
Halyna is wondering like her neighbors why so many shells hit not the DPR roadblocks but usual residential houses. "There were a not so well trained eighteen years old boys shooting. Or maybe their hands were shaking or their weapons were old? "- Says the woman.
Yet, Semenivka locals consider that there is no one to blame although recalling media that "exited hostility, setting up people against each other." They think about the future. They count on support but believe not much in it. They have no idea whom to refer for help to restore their homes and whether it is possible at all. The locals say that the key point is that there is no more firing. They also asked to say that the same people as everywhere in Ukraine live in Semenivka, and they also have children.
"I advise you to listen to the residents of Semenivka and of course to look how they live. The authorities drove by them again today. They didn't reach the town yet. Military engineers worked nearby for several hours. The commission on renewal of schools and kindergartens is promised to be created but the people have nowhere to live right now. There is still no food and electricity. There also wasn't any humanitarian aid," the journalist Natallia Humenyuk wrote about the situation in the village today, one day after her story being on air.
"Mykolaivka. On the first photo should be a house with 8 apartments, the same as that one nearby. But its gone. We were also in the hospital where two surgeons were saving people in the basement during two days of the shelling. The paramedics did not let the DPR terrorists to take the ambulances away. The nurses shouted that the militants may shoot them but they will not hand over the vehicles. There is a manual on "how to escape the battle" hanging on the wall with the inscription made by a pen saying there is no such possibility. "Since Mykolaivka local council and the police department were not captured and the separatists set two checkpoints there were no battles and citizens did not expect shelling. They had to search for bodies on the Myr Street during shelling for the first hours. the State Emergency Service officers from Donetsk and Krasnyi Lyman are now working there. The people are generaly silent on the streets. The people near that house complained that some TV channel reported it was the explosion of gas so they do not believe that journalists will show the truth. Some old woman asked if we know whether anyone is going to restore the building. She was very afraid to be punished for such a question. People organize themselves. There are power generators on the central square where the phones are charging. There are four of them in Mykolaivka. There is no power or water in the town. Still no one of the authorities have come. No signs of any other assistance either," the journalist said about the situation in Mykolaivka.