Volodymyr Zelensky praises on Father’s Day fathers who ‘defend’ Ukraine

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Many countries around the world celebrate Father’s Day on this third Sunday in June.

In Ukraine this year, the holiday is bittersweet.

Men of combat age cannot leave the country if they are called up to take part in the fight against Russian invading forces. Many have sent their families away to safety, and many have been killed on the battlefield.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and his close aides say 100 to 200 Ukrainian soldiers are killed every day and hundreds are wounded.

In a wartime father’s day message, Zelensky, who has two children, praised fathers who “defend” Ukraine.

“Being a father is a great responsibility and a great happiness,” the leader of Ukraine said on Sunday in an Instagram post. “It is strength, wisdom, motivation to move forward and not to give up. And no matter how difficult it is – to protect and defend the most precious. Thank you, our heroes. “

Zelensky has a daughter and a son. In an interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper in April, he spoke fondly of his teenage daughter and joked that “without knocking [on] the door, I can not talk to my daughter. ”

He told Tapper that he wanted his children to remember him as “a man who loved life to the fullest and loved his family and loved his motherland – certainly not a hero.”

The Ukrainian president’s speech was accompanied by photos of men in Ukraine, some in military fatigue, others dressed as civilians taking care of their families in hospitals and underground bunkers.

In a couple of the footage, you can see fathers sending their children away by train while they stay behind.

Officials in Kiev have called for more weapons and ammunition from the West as they fight to retain control of areas in the east where the most intense fighting is taking place.

Father’s Day was an opportunity for some to call for an end to the war.

Ukraine is running out of ammunition as the prospects weaken on the battlefield

“On Father’s Day, we want all of Ukraine’s soldiers to return home as soon as possible with victory,” one post from Ukraine’s Interior Ministry said.

In an accompanying video, which has the logo of Ukraine’s state border guard, a soldier tells the camera: “We are defending our country for the sake of our children.”

“We must end this war so that our children grow up under a peaceful sky and so that our children do not have to fight like us,” adds another.

On Thursday, Ukraine’s parliament, the Verkhovna Rada, shared a video of a son reuniting with his father, who is in military fatigue. “We are doing everything we can to ensure that children will see their parents return home from war,” Parliament’s caption said.

Ukraine, handling war losses, adds new polish to military funerals

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