War in Ukraine. In Lviv, the Russian strikes remind that “there is no longer a safe place” in the country

At a hotel housing displaced families in Lviv, western Ukraine, a woman sweeps shards of glass between washing machines and drying racks shortly after a Russian missile targeted an unidentified garage. away, at breakfast time.

Five “powerful” Russian strikes hit Lviv on Monday, killing seven people and injuring eight others, according to official authorities. One of the missiles pulverized an auto repair garage, which overlooked a railway line, just west of the town.

“City of refuge” for the displaced

Far from the front and close to the Polish border, Lviv has usually been relatively spared from bombardments since the start of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on February 24, unlike the east of the country where the keystrokes.

This large western city has become a “city of refuge” for displaced people, but also for several Western embassies.

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In the courtyard of the hotel, located a few steps away, snowflakes sprinkle a sea of ​​broken glass. The windows were almost all smashed.

No “safe place”

“We had barely eaten and we wanted to go back to our rooms when we heard an explosion,” says a septuagenarian, housed in this establishment for a few weeks after being evacuated from the Lugansk region (east) and who did not didn’t want to give his name.

On the first floor, women and children in winter coats carry their luggage from one room to another, waiting to learn if they should leave the hotel. Among the bags appear a cat scratcher and a transport cage.

Down the hall, a bank employee, Natalia, is looking for twenty rooms in another hotel for families she has helped to leave the east of the country. “Today we clearly understand that there is no safe place in Ukraine. It’s very dangerous, ”she says, before rushing into another room.

Life according to the sirens

And when the air raid siren went off shortly before 8 a.m. local time (0500 GMT), some simply ignored it, thinking the risk of strikes in Lviv could not be as serious as that in the regions they came from. to escape.

A hundred meters further, near the garage whose ruins are still smoking, firefighters stand in front of car wrecks, then inspect a crater dug in the asphalt of a street overlooking the railway. Just after the sound of a second aerial siren, a train passes, in slow motion. Through the windows, passengers, including a young child, observe the journalists gathered in front of the bombing site.

Across the street, a policeman, Orest Mazine, waits for his colleagues to take a look at his car, a gray Mercedes. He was on his way to work along the railway line when the missile sliced ​​through the air, through the trees, he said.

“It happened so fast”

“It flew right in front of me,” he said, still a little shocked.

“It happened so fast, I didn’t even hear the explosion,” he adds, pointing to a hole in his windshield, caused by a shard of metal.

At the foot of the passenger seat, his lunch basket has not moved. The policeman had planned to eat chicken breast and potato stew.

Source: Le Progrès : info et actu nationale et régionale – Rhône, Loire, Ain, Haute-Loire et Jura | Le Progrès by www.leprogres.fr.

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