First Ladies of Ukraine, Germany discuss arms supplies

23 October 2022, 06:26 PM
Elke Büdenbender and Olena Zelenska (Photo:REUTERS/Maximilian Schwarz)

Elke Büdenbender and Olena Zelenska (Photo:REUTERS/Maximilian Schwarz)

The First Lady of Ukraine, Olena Zelenska, met with the First Lady of Germany, Elke Büdenbender, as part of her working visit to Germany, Ukraine’s presidential office announced in a statement on Oct. 22.

The two first ladies discussed, among other things, the provision of anti-aircraft and anti-missile defense equipment to Ukraine.

They also unveiled a joint project, Better Time Stories. Zelenska also mentioned that lately, besides humanitarian topics, she has been increasingly discussing military aid to Ukraine during her meetings with the first ladies of other countries.

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“Germany is one of the countries that helps Ukrainians seeking protection the most,” Ukraine’s first lady said on Instagram.

“Not only has it sheltered them, but it has also provided a million (Ukrainian) women, children, and senior citizens with peace. Back in the spring, our children with cancer were admitted here for the first time. Orphanages have since provided all necessary assistance.”

She thanked the German counterpart for also supporting the opening of the first German-Ukrainian school in Berlin.

“It is extremely important for us, for the students, and for the parents, to keep the connection with the native language, and the Ukrainian curriculum,” the first lady explained, though she added that “Russian aggression makes us violate all peacetime protocols.”

“But what do the protocols matter when people die? So, like back in the summer in Washington in front of the U.S. Congress, I have also talked about military support for Ukraine with my counterpart in Germany today.”

Ukrainian celebrities, such as Monatik, Nadya Dorofeeva, Jamala, Yuriy Gorbunov, also joined the Better Time Stories project. The goal of the project is to help children (aged 3 to 7) over-come sadness, integrate into the new environment of a host country and keep in touch with relatives who stayed at home, with the help of books. The books are translated into two languages: Ukrainian and the language of a host country (German and Dutch).

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