The fourth day of the war between Ukraine and Russia opened with the Russian troops making their way into the large Ukrainian city of Kharkiv, the 2nd largest city in the country. Bitter fighting is taking place and endangering the lives of the surrounding civilians.
Many local Jews have taken refuge in the central synagogue in Kharkiv, while hundreds of others have fled their homes. Many even left their homes on Shabbat as their lives are in immediate danger, and the principle of saving lives takes precedence over the laws of Shabbat.
In addition, as a result of a ban on men over 18 leaving the country many Jewish families are encountering difficulties at border crossings. Many Jewish families have hiked many miles on foot, only to be turned back at the border if the head of the family holds Ukrainian citizenship.
Photos from the border are reminiscent of World War II, hundreds of families in the freezing February weather, desperate for help.