The Russian-backed offensive by the separatist Donetsk People's Republic (DNR) against the Ukrainian military has now entered its third week, and has claimed the lives of at least 341 soldiers and civilians in the region since the start of the year.

While the strategically important town of Debaltseve remains the focus of the DNR's assault, heavy and unrelenting clashes are still taking place in the village of Pisky, located just a few miles west of Donetsk airport.

The village lies in ruins after months of constant shelling, which has forced almost all of the civilians to flee. VICE News traveled to Pisky to meet the soldiers and volunteers defending the village from daily DNR attacks.

Watch "Trying to Flee Debaltseve: Russian Roulette (Dispatch 90)"

Read "Separatist Leader Proclaims Mobilization of 100,000 Fighters as Another Ukraine Peace Process Fails"