Saturday, October 1

The exodus of the century


ANDIt’s always a hasty flight. The cars go to the limit of occupants and a few personal items. After all, there is little that can be saved when you feel like you have to leave your house with no time to waste. Our photojournalist Álvaro Ybarra Zavala travels on foot more than 20 kilometers of an endless caravan of vehicles, between the Ukrainian city of Tarashany and Siret, on the other side of the Romanian border, the first goal of an exodus whose final destination is still unknown to many.

Those who flee wear fear on their faces. They organize themselves to eat and drink, share what they have, while the line of cars towards Romania advances at a desperately slow pace. They’ve been on the road for days. Kiev, for example, was eight hours away before the Russian invasion, now the Romanian border is two days away. That is why many, their nerves shattered, their patience overwhelmed, abandon their cars and follow the route on foot, trying to speed up their departure from the country. Without knowing where they will go and without knowing, above all, if they will ever return.


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