The exhibition includes many photos like this one which shows remains of a Russian airplane destroyed in Gostomel airport during fierce fighting.

New exhibition sheds light on the pain of Ukrainians

The devastating impact of the Russian invasion on Ukraine is the focus of a new exhibition taking place on Leeside.

A exhibition called ‘Ukraine. The Cost of Freedom’ will showcase photos by some of the most prominent Ukrainian photographers offers a glimpse of life on the frontline of the devastating war against Russian forces.

The exhibition sheds a light on the pain and struggle of Ukrainian citizens, who are now resisting the Russian invasion for more than two months, some without food, water and electricity. Photographs taken along the high-risk 580km frontline show the devastation of Russian attacks, with Ukrainian cities now laid bare in rubble.

Yevgeniy Ikhelzon, former deputy editor of Ukraine’s largest daily newspaper Segodnya, who has moved to Cork with his family since the war broke out said: “What we have experienced in Ukraine is unspeakable. Photographers and journalists have risked their lives in combat zones to capture the atrocities of Russian attacks on our towns, villages and people.

“We are hoping the images will shed light on the devastation that is occurring in our homeland. We could not be more grateful to the people of Ireland for welcoming us in their country and providing safe refuge. We hope that we can tour this exhibition around Europe to raise awareness of the gravity of the situation.”

Yevgeniy Ikhelzon covered the Russian attacks on Chechnya and Georgia in 1999 and 2008 while working as the deputy editor of Segodnya and a war correspondent. Just over two months ago, Ikhelzon moved to Cork with his wife, Svitlana, also a journalist, alongside his mother-in-law and two young children David and Damian. He lives in Castletownroche.

Since the invasion began in February of this year, more than 20,000 residential buildings, 1,200 schools and 400 hospitals have been destroyed by the Russian army. Thousands of lives have been lost, with over five million Ukrainians having fled their home country in search of safety. Many of the attacks by Russian forces have been likened in scale to those that occurred in World War II.

Photographs have been provided to the exhibition by Ukrainska Pravda, Ukraine’s largest news website. Additional support of the project has been provided by the Ukraine-Hilfe Berlin charity. Those involved in the exhibition hope to bring the display on a tour to European cities.

The exhibition is open to the public from 11am–8pm each day except for Sundays until 30 May in St Peter’s on Main Street.