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Tanya Belyanina | Germany

Olga:“I came first in March, had to get back, and found a job in August. I don’t plan to return.
They killed my homeland. I don’t have a ground under my feet. Better to say, I do but it’s poisoned. And with all of this, it’s still alive but lives in some kind of parallel reality, it became something diabolical, so I have to get away. Not because it is dangerous for me but because I don’t want this to happen in my name. I don’t agree to connect my name with this”.

Since February 24th, 2022, many people left Russia. Some with a plan, some without. Some immediately after hearing the news, some later. Some were more or less preparing for it, some have never thought about leaving their country before.

The reality is that this situation is not even new - the conflict between Ukraine and Russia has been ongoing for eight years already, and February 24th simply marked a new, tragic chapter in the history of both countries. And like in every war, everybody involved loses.

Here are just a few stories of people who fled from Russia to Kazakhstan because they opposed the war and Russia’s deplorable conduct. Their situation is very different to that of Ukrainians forced to flee the threat of Russian bombing. Yet in a different way, they also lost their home.

Here I share the experiences of people who chose to leave their motherland, perhaps forever, because they rejected its path of senseless and despicable violence and could no longer be part of it. They have nothing to do with government decisions but were powerless to change them.

I am a Munich-based photographer born in Moscow. I aim to capture the beauty of the moment, even if it has a sense of melancholy. My area of interest is documentary, street, and urban photography as well as portrait and fashion.
My inspiration comes from traveling; getting to know different people and cultures. As an ex-pat myself I find it thought-provoking to hear the stories of those who change the place they live in and in which circumstances. My recent project involves interviews with Russian who fled to Kazakhstan because of war (coming soon).
Welcome to my world.

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