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Hundreds of civilians caught up in fighting in Ukraine being evacuated

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By Seamus Kearney
Hundreds of civilians caught up in fighting in Ukraine being evacuated
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Russian-backed rebels in the Ukrainian town of Vuhlehirsk have opened up what they call a humanitarian corridor for civilians fleeing fighting there.

We don't yet know where we're going, just somewhere away from this madness

People are worried about further shelling by Ukrainian forces, who have also exchanged fire with rebels attempting to take control of nearby Debaltseve.

Vuhlehirsk came under the control of the rebels after fierce fighting that began on January the 30th.

One woman fleeing her home told reporters: “We don’t yet know where we’re going, just somewhere away from this madness.”

Ukrainian forces are also evacuating residents from the town of Debaltseve.

One Ukrainian soldier was filmed arguing with a local man who refuses to leave.

The soldier tells him that he and his young boy have to flee, saying it is the boy he needs to worry about.

When the man again refuses, the soldier shouts: “You idiot! Switch on your brain and stop drinking! You’ve already had your life but the boy still has his life ahead of him. I beg you!”

Debaltseve has been without electricity and water for days.

Meanwhile, the government in Kyiv has announced that citizens from the Russian Federation who enter Ukraine can now only do so on recognised international passports, and not just ID cards.