Viktoria Apanasenko, Ukraine’s candidate for the Miss Universe 2022 beauty pageant, has said she was not allowed to speak about Russia’s war against Ukraine from the stage, she said in an interview with the Ukrainian newspaper KP.UA on Jan. 18.
Apanasenko emphasized that there was no mention of Russia attacking Ukraine during the competition.
“The phrase that Russia attacked Ukraine wasn’t uttered on the stage of the competition,” she said.
“I had an hour-and-a-half interview, but they took only a small piece about my volunteering. In addition, I was presented with one of four special awards – Spirit of Carnival Award. Other girls were invited to the stage for the award during the finale, but I wasn’t. They recorded a video with me the day before the final. I thought it was a test video, but then it was shown in the broadcast. But they didn’t give me a microphone to speak.”
Apanasenko added that she was angered by the fact that the Russian contestant had not been asked about the war in Ukraine.
“The word ‘war’ itself was said, but the combination of words that Russia attacked Ukraine – no,” the Ukrainian model said.
“I don’t know why. I don’t have the answer to this question. But it hurts me. I’ve done everything I could. I talked a lot not only about the war, but also about how technological our country is, how talented and courageous people we have. The Russian contestant wasn’t talking about the war at all. Nothing. Not a single question to her about her country’s aggression. None.”
The Ukrainian representative confessed that she was disappointed by the fact that the organizers had not given her even 20 seconds to speak from the stage.
However, Apanasenko still managed to talk about cruel Russian aggression, but not during the competition, but in an interview with Western media.
“I had a lot of interviews for foreign media,” she said.
“Everyone wanted to find out about the situation in Ukraine. Some journalists even asked if the war ended, which surprised me. I told the stories of specific people, showed photos from Kyiv Oblast, from the places which I had personally visited. They asked about my trip because it is a unique story for the competition. They were amazed that I was traveling for three days, partly under fire, alone with heavy suitcases.”