Trapped Africans drinking melted snow in Ukraine city

A woman from Western Africa cries while taking on the phone after fleeing Ukraine following the Russian invasion, at the border checkpoint in Medyka, Poland, February 28, 2022.   REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach
A woman from Western Africa cries while taking on the phone after fleeing Ukraine following the Russian invasion, at the border checkpoint in Medyka, Poland, February 28, 2022. REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach

Nigerian, Ghanaian and Somali students are among hundreds of foreign nationals stuck in Ukraine's north-eastern city of Sumy which has been pummelled by Russian forces for days.

There is no food in the market, cashpoints are not working and the students are drinking melted snow after running out of water.

An Indian student, Vipin Yadav, who is part of the group trapped in the city, estimates about 1,300 foreign students are still trapped there - including people from Bangladesh, Pakistan and Turkey.

In a phone interview, Mr Yadav told the BBC's Danny Aeberhard that there was nothing to eat for the last four to five days.


Nigerian and Ghanaian governments have been repatriating their nationals who are fleeing the conflict in Ukraine. The first groups arrived back home last week.

More than 1,000 Ghanaian students were living in Ukraine until Russia invaded the country. The West African nation has so far made two repatriation missions.

Nigeria is expected to evacuate 5,000 citizens who crossed from Ukraine to the neighbouring countries of Romania, Poland and Hungary.

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