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St. Petersburg woman reacts to Russian troops in Ukraine

11:47 PM, Mar 1, 2014   |    comments
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St. Petersburg, Florida -- Today, Russian stunned the world by choosing to swiftly move into the autonomous province of Crimea. Many countries, including the U.S., are calling on Moscow to withdraw its forces from the region.

This international issue is hitting home in the Tampa Bay area. 10 News reporter Sarah Hagen spoke with a local woman who has ties to both Russia and Ukraine.

Natalia Khakhoula of St. Petersburg says her parents live in Ukraine. Her grandfather was Russian. She says the perspective she's gotten on this is that it's disturbing.

"I think the move of the Russian president, in a way it was expected. A lot of Ukrainians were saying until the Olympic games were gone, he was going to be quiet. But when it is over, he will do something. He wont let it be the way Ukrainians want it."

She says the latest move of Russian troops over the border into Ukraine has her family on edge.

"Whatever was happening in Ukraine, what Ukrainian people were fighting for, had nothing to do with the Russian people in Ukraine. They just wanted a free democratic society."

Now, Khakoula says what they want is to be left alone. "If you ask the average person, they don't care about politics. Now people are worried they are trying to provoke a war and all people want to do is build a better life. No one wants any war."

That includes her parents who are back in her hometown in Ukraine. 

"They are glued to the TV. It's the moment of when you can't really rest. Politics won't die -- regular people will."

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