More than 6,000 people are though to have lost their lives since the fighting in Eastern Ukraine began in April 2014, just one month after Russia occupied Ukraine’s southern Crimea peninsula.
The fighting shows no evidence of slowing down anytime soon, despite a recent truce being agreed and subsequently ignored by the rebels.
Top political advisors to President Obama are now calling on the West, led by Obama, to take a stance and show their support.
These politicians are urging Obama to arm the Ukraine with much needed modern weaponry and munitions, to help them fight off the rebels.
Soldiers with many faces
The soldiers fighting the war in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions of Eastern Ukraine are often volunteers, with many ex-soldiers from other European countries fighting along side them; against what Putin states are Russian Rebels.
However there is no denying that Russia are providing weapons to these rebels. With President Putin claiming those providing weapons for the war are ‘volunteers’.
Ukraine National Security and Defense Council via BBC
The majority of the fighting is now taking place in the southernly area of Mariupol which once held a population of 463 thousand is now a deserted city. A city that is preparing itself for a Russian invasion, with Bomb shelter signs plaster everywhere you look.
A strategic city
The next chapter in this war seems too obvious. Mariupol is a highly valuable and strategic prize that will allow direct access to the Russian held Crimea region.
The residents and soldiers stationed in Mariupol have their work cut out. Their attackers not only come from the East, but also from the South in the form of Russian-backed separatists, who, in launched a recent rocket attack, killing 30 and injuring 100.
The US Stance
There seems to have been very little done by the US to aid Ukraine since the fighting started. It is now believed that there are approximately 12,000 Russian soldiers of various roles fighting in Eastern Ukraine.
Whilst Obama is still holding out for diplomacy, recent attempts at a ceasefire have failed. This is only adding to the pressure being applied by the politicians to stand up and arm Ukraine.