An agrarian from Nova Husarivka in the Kharkiv region told about the losses due to the war. More than half a million hectares of arable land need demining in the region. For now, half of the explosives can be cleared. First of all, sappers will work on critical infrastructure facilities and lands that don’t have a lot of explosives. Volodymyr Hlushko, the director of the “Fenix” farm, said what losses the farmers have due to the war. “For 30 years in a row, apples, pears and cherries were collected in the gardens in Nova Husarivka near Balakliia, – explains Volodymyr Hlushko, – today, there are Russian trenches and remains of ammunition; across the road there is a sunflower field filled with mines.” “As the sappers told me, they found 260 anti-tank mines here. The tapes are markings. There is an unhealthy situation here. Sappers are driving all the time, looking for mines – we see it all the time. I didn’t even talk with them about demining. We understand that it will take a long time. But demining definitely won’t end this year,” – says Hlushko. The farmer says that in 2022 Russians were in the fields, then fighting continued in the Balakliia community, so the crops were not harvested. Volodymyr Hlushko says they will not be able to cultivate the land this year either. He is counting losses and thinking about closing the company. “We are communicating with farmers. No one knows how we should act in this case. The biggest question with no answer to it: what should we do with the sharecroppers? The people who leased us the land asked about the payment for the land. In 2023, there will be more people asking that than in 2022. And we don’t know what should we answer. We are in a very difficult situation,” – says the farmer. “Winter wheat was sown on an area of more than 100 hectares, and we did not harvest it – this is a big expense. This was basically our income. The vineyards on almost 10 hectares were covered, and we could not open them. They remained closed and suffered a lot, I think many grape bushes will simply perish,” – says the director of the farm. Hlushko says that his and his colleagues’ part of the grain and inventory was stolen. “We had a lot of flooded grain in warehouses, because there were hits and it was damaged. Equipment was broken, tractors were broken, everything was stolen, even steering wheels or wheels. The material part was damaged greatly. My colleagues and I had diesel fuel – it was stolen to the last drop. I had 3.5 tons – not a single gram was left,” says the farmer. Tetyana Vavryichuk, head of the Nova Husarivka district, says that the situation with agriculture is difficult. “The large farm “Solomyia Agro” has almost all its land mined and it is suspending its activity. “Agro-industrial complex Donets” farm is also suspending, because it is impossible to get to the fields and find machine operators who will risk their lives,” – says the headman of the Nova Husarivka district. “The primary need for demining is 270,000 hectares. 570,000 hectares is the total need for demining and surveying. About 300,000 hectares is the potentially dangerous mass of territory that we currently have, even for surveying. The number will increase. We still have 72,000 hectares under occupation,” – says Yevhen Ivanov, Deputy Chief of the Kharkiv Military Regional Administration. “In order to completely clear of mines the de-occupied territories of Kharkiv Oblast, we need 125,000 sappers in a year. There is not enough people and equipment”, – says the director of the regional department of civil protection, Ivan Sokol. “Currently, we don’t have the resources even for a non-technical survey to say what kind of ammunition the land is contaminated with. There are so many tragic cases. Concerning farmers, I understand that it’s money loss, financial inconvenience and questions. But my opinion is this: it is better to preserve life and health. The most important thing is that farmers cannot start working, if their field has not been at least inspected,” – says Ivan Sokol. According to Sokol, the regional military administration is considering the option of prohibiting farmers from working in the fields of Kharkiv Region that have not been inspected by sappers.
Source: Ukrainian Public TV