In liberated Ukrainian villages, fears are growing for men taken to Russia

VELYKYI BOBRYK, Ukraine – Pillars of Russian armor flowed past this village in northeastern Ukraine with its leaky lake and a blue-domed church on the first day of the war. For three weeks it stood in peace.

The Russians returned on March 16, this time looking for someone with cell phone footage or something that Ukrainian rebels could have used in a wave of hit-and-run attacks on their supply lines. A tank had been destroyed nearby. Russian soldiers had killed the attacker, a local man named Ivan Demidov. They then went house to house through Velykyi Bobryk looking for potential accomplices before withdrawing from here and the rest of northern Ukraine in late March.

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