Much has changed in Ukraine during 27 years of independence. As a former Soviet republic, it borders both Russia and the EU. Whilst there was once a majority wanting a neutral status, it is now leaning towards European integration and NATO accession.
It is considered a NATO "partner country" meaning there is an understanding that it may be allowed to join the alliance sometime in the future.
Russia wants assurances from Western powers that this will never happen - something the West is not prepared to offer. Members of NATO are weighing up how far they should go to help Ukraine, in the face of a possible Russian invasion. It is Europe’s greatest threat of war in 30 years.
In 2005 I travelled to the Ukraine on assignment to capture the “Children of Chernobyl” for a charity. I photographed at the Chernigov Polyclinic covering the health program monitoring the effects of the Chernobyl disaster of 1986.
The people that I met and photographed were extremely welcoming, wanted to show me their beautiful culture, and proud of who they were as a nation.
“Communication is the key to education, understanding and peace”. James Bryce