‘Scared’ Hanna Greentree, who has lived in the UK since 2017, said her mum Iryna Pavlova has ‘a bag packed with all her documents’ in case she needs to make a quick getaway.
Iryna lives in Hanna’s home city of Kharkiv, which is just a 30 minute drive from the Russian border, and not far from the Russian military training camp of Kursk, which is one of three locations where Putin has reportedly massed troops recently.
Speaking to The News, 43-year-old Hanna said: ‘She called me two weeks ago saying she was prepared to leave if anything happened.
‘She doesn’t want to leave, she is 65 years old and all her friends and her property is there. But I don’t want my mum in danger so I’ve said I need to take care of her.
‘When I spoke again to her last night she said the feeling is that if Russia wants to invade they will just have to let them. No one wants war, they are peaceful.’
Hanna lives with her husband Matthew, 47, and 16-year-old daughter Melania, and is looking for a bigger home in the area to provide a room for Iryna, who recently left her 40-year career as a gynaecologist due to ‘risky’ rising Covid cases in her hospital.
‘We all know that Putin is unpredictable,’ Hanna said.
‘We don’t know what he is going to do.’
It comes as British nationals in Ukraine were told to leave the country on Saturday (Feb 12) after the US said that Russia could invade ‘any day now’ and told its own citizens to leave in the next 48 hours.
Business development assistant Hanna, who lived in Russia before moving to the US and then the UK, said: ‘I’ve seen how the Russians treat people from Ukraine. They view us as second-class citizens.
‘When I lived there I would try to hide my accent otherwise it’s difficult to get a job.’
Russia has denied any plans to invade Ukraine despite massing more than 100,000 troops near the border.