As NATO countries scurry around the tanks, Ukrainian soldiers shudder in the trenches under the incessant fire

As Ukrainian soldiers tremble in the front-line trenches, they hope NATO countries will stop hesitating over the decision to send modern battle tanks to help them stand up to Russian aggression.

A team of journalists from France Télévision has been flown to Velyka Novosilka and guided through a maze of snow-covered earthworks in an area soldiers call Zero Line.

They saw soldiers under almost constant bombardment from the Russians only a few hundred meters away.

“Everyone is afraid, all the time, I am also very afraid,” said one of the leaders. But if my men saw that, they would be nervous too. So officially, I’m not afraid.

The maze of frozen ground is all that protects Ukrainians when the bombs fall.

The French team arrived before dawn, the first foreign journalists to visit.

Another Ukrainian soldier said: “The most frightening thing is when we see a tank coming towards us, when the tank shoots, it happens very quickly.”

Soldiers do not stay more than three days on this zero line, which is constantly under the threat of Russian strikes. After nearly a year of conflict, “there is nothing but hatred” for the Russian soldiers, says their commander.

France Télévision journalists said that the soldiers interviewed agreed on the need for more heavy tanks from Ukraine’s European allies.

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