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'The new reality has started' – Kyiv resident concedes war could last for years

According to Ilyas Verdiev, a Kyiv resident, the Russians are fundamentally changing Ukraine’s national psyche through their incessant bombing, increasing casualties, and continuing efforts to resist them.

According to the 40-year-old married father, he and a growing group of Ukrainians are starting to accept that a war which has shattered his family and left more than 5.5million refugees across Europe could continue for years. The prospect of such a war is changing people’s outlook.

“I believe this is the time for us all when we need to define and realize that the new reality has actually begun and the formation our new personality is taking place right now,” Ilyas says in this week’s Sky News Ukraine War Diaries podcast.

“We must admit it.”

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Image: Ilyas at Kyiv

Recently, Russian troops took control of key areas of the disputed Donbas Region – this was the focal point of sustained fighting in recent month in addition to strategic gains in south.

Ilyas refuses to let his wife and two sons return from Poland to Kyiv. He started recording audio diaries for Sky News in February after the Russian invasion.

Ilyas continues, “How are we going to live the next few years?” This formation is very important because it allows us to realize that our lives will be different than they were five months ago.

Image Ilyas slept in the bomb shelter at Kyiv

Listen to the latest Ukraine War Diaries Omnibus to hear Ilyas and Oksana’s latest diaries. Oksana is a Kyiv-based professional who this week finds inspiration through the story of an 11-year old resident.

Ukraine War Diaries, a Sky News series that has won multiple awards and StoryCast award wins, follows the lives of people in war-torn countries.

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