SC Family With Ties To Ukraine Keeping Close Eye On Tense Border Situation
By Marvin Beach (WCCB)
FORT MILL, S.C. – Charlotte area families with close ties to Ukraine are watching closely as tensions accelerate along the Russia-Ukraine border.
Tens of thousands of Russian troops remain positioned near the border amid fears of a possible invasion.
“I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t concerned. You know, I worry about my brother being there,” says Fort Mill, SC Resident Kathi Matiaszek.
Her father came to the U.S. as a refugee. and her brother lives there.
As she shows pictures from her last visit two years ago, she says the current situation is distressing.
“Moscow has just never been ready to accept that Ukraine wants to be a free, independent country,” Matiaszek says.
Her brother tells her people aren’t panicking, but says they are staying aware, concerned about reports that 25,000 to 50,000 civilians could be killed if Russia invades.
It’s leaving many wondering what Russian President Vladimir Putin’s end game is.
“I think he wants to keep Ukraine out of NATO, I think he sees that as a threat to Russia,” Matiaszek says.
She says people in Ukraine want to preserve their freedom and democracy.
“They’re a very proud, patriotic nation. And, you know, they’re not just going to lie down and let Putin come in there without a fight,” Matiaszek says.
She says Ukranians don’t want to see themselves or others, including the U.S., dragged into a prolonged fight.
“What they want is weapons support, and you know, political support,” she says.
She says her brother is like others in Ukraine, just taking the situation day to day and hoping for the best.