JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Galina Kelly was born and raised in Moscow and moved to the United States 20 years ago. She’s both shocked and saddened by the situation in Ukraine.
“Just seeing what’s happening absolutely blows my mind,” Kelly said.
She said watching the events unfold on television is heartbreaking, but knowing the death and destruction is being caused by the government of her native country is even more disturbing.
“Just think about it. If someone invaded our country here, how would we feel? What would we do?” Kelly said. “What happens to normal families, the children and kids? I mean, all their life is interrupted, and it just feels terrible.”
RELATED: Russia-Ukraine conflict: Here’s how you can help | Jacksonville-area refugee organization monitoring situation in Ukraine
It’s not just the people of Ukraine that Kelly worries about. She has friends back in Russia who she fears will feel the impact of sanctions by several countries, including the U.S.
Sanctions on the Russian banking industry and trade will economically hurt Russians who have nothing to do with the invasion and oppose President Vladimir Putin’s decision to invade Ukraine.
The U.S., Britain, Canada and European Union said Friday they will sanction Putin and Sergey Lavrov, his foreign minister. The EU unanimously agreed to freeze their assets.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki indicated the U.S. sanctions will include a travel ban.
“Oil and gas could impact the country and the people,” Kelly said. “Regular people.”
Kelly says she fears this invasion is an attempt by Putin to re-establish the Soviet Union.
“Looking back several years ago when he invaded Crimea, now I’m thinking that I fear he has more plans,” she added.
Kelly says when she was a child, her family would often take vacation trips to Ukraine and seeing the destruction on television is too much to bear.
Copyright 2022 by WJXT News4Jax – All rights reserved.