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Ukrainian couple defending country from Russian invasion tie the knot on the frontline

A Ukrainian couple who have been together for 22 years decided to formalise their relationship by getting married on the defensive line near Kyiv.

Lesia Ivashchenko left her job when the war with Russia started last month and joined the territorial defence forces to defend her district on the outskirts of Kyiv.

She hadn’t seen her partner, Valerii Fylymonov, since the beginning of the Russian invasion until Sunday, when the pair officially tied the knot.

Ms Ivashchenko wore a veil with her military fatigues and held beautiful pale pink roses for the ceremony which was carried out by what appeared to be a military chaplain.

Lesia Ivashchenko quit her job to join the forces defending Kyiv

Ukraine invasion: Live updates

“I’m happy that we are alive, that this day started, that my husband is alive, and he is with me,” she said after the wedding ceremony on Sunday.

“We are determined to push back the enemy and take back our lands and win,” said the happy bride.

The couple have an 18-year-old daughter who reportedly did not attend the ceremony.

The ceremony was watched by many other defence force members
The ceremony was watched by many other defence force members

Kyiv mayor Vitali Klitschko and his brother – boxer Wladimir- came to congratulate the newlyweds.

Ms Ivashchenko said: “I expected to have a very modest ceremony. I thought we’ll just will say ‘yes’ to each other.

“It was a surprise from my brothers in arms and our commanders that they decided to set it up to show that despite everything we believe in future and life is going on.”

Video of the wedding has been shared on social media, boosting morale at a time when so many have chosen to step up and fight for their country.


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