Many people living on either side of the Kharkiv border crossing between Ukraine and Russia have friends and families on the other.
The journey across the border is popular and fast. But it may become more challenging. Ukraine plans to introduce visas for visiting Russians, and Moscow may mirror the move and bring in visas for Ukrainians.
As Russian border guards step up checks at the border, many people don’t want visas just to visit friends and family.
One Ukrainian man said, “I am against this decision because I have a lot of relatives in Russia. I do not see much sense in it. I assume that many others living in Ukraine have relatives in Russia?”
Another commented, “The two counties used to live in friendship and now it looks like we are not brotherly any more.”
As ordinary friends and families get on with their lives, tensions between the former brotherly neighbours are perhaps at their lowest point since the fall of the Soviet Union.