Donetsk February 21: there is no panic and excitement, but there are fewer people
Klymenko Time journalist on the situation in the “DPR”
While alarming reports of shelling continued to come from the contact line, Donetsk itself is slowly returning to normal life. Queues at gas stations and near ATMs have decreased. There is no excitement in the stores. People continue to be evacuated, but they still do not leave the city en masse.
Klymenko Time prepared a report from the streets of the mining capital.
Today is the first working day after a disturbing weekend, but starting from Sunday, there are no particular signs of panic or excitement in the center of Donetsk. The city is a little empty: it is noticeable both in the number of people on the streets and in the number of cars, but all utilities, shops, state-owned enterprises are working as usual.
The queues at ATMs have decreased, but there are still. People are trying to withdraw cash. Bank branches are open as usual.
“I needed to unblock my bank card, I was very worried that there would be problems because of all this, - says Lydia from Donetsk. - But the whole procedure took no more than 10 minutes, and, oddly enough, there was no queue at the cashier. True, in order to withdraw money, I had to stand in line at an ATM for about half an hour, but at least there is money in ATMs, because on Friday I was not able to withdraw my salary, they raked out the cash cleanly.
Transport also runs without interruption, although there are noticeably fewer minibuses at the Krytyi Rynok bus station. Some of the buses were taken to evacuate people to Russia.
The shelves in the shops are not empty, there are no queues. Prices have remained the same.
But conventional paraffin candles have doubled in price. If earlier one candle cost 20 rubles, now its price is 40-50 rubles. Moreover, according to the sellers, they are simply not in stock, everything was sold out over the weekend.
“They are nowhere to be found now, they gave me two packs from under the floor, - says the seller at the Covered Market, - Yesterday I went for candles, but it’s empty there.”
The local "authorities" are constantly reminding about the aggravation that has begun. So, numerous posters and boards with calls for mobilization appeared in the city, the loudspeakers of the cars of the local telecom operator Komtel, driving around the city, also report this. DPR flags were hung on the houses in the center.
But in supermarkets, along with advertisements, residents of Donetsk are reminded of the possibility of evacuation.
At one of the evacuation points in the Voroshilovsky district, we did not meet a single person. But an employee of the administration is on duty there, who explains to interested people how to sign up for an evacuation. According to her, the number of people wishing to leave the city has decreased significantly compared to Friday, but, nevertheless, the buses leave every day.
Basically, the question “are you staying or are you leaving?” can be called the most frequently asked among the residents of the city, but the majority of Donetsk residents, at least those living in the central regions, do not plan to leave yet.
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