From Star Comedian To Fearless Leader: Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyys Journey Continues To Win Hearts

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From Star Comedian To Fearless Leader: Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy's Journey Continues To Win Hearts

The Ukrainian President said that he would remain in the country's capital Kyiv amid the Russian invasion, an actor turned politician encouraging his country to stay firm in a time of war.

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Russian troops stormed toward Ukraine's capital Kyiv early Saturday, February 26, as explosions reverberated through the city. President Volodymyr Zelensky urged the country to "stand firm" against the siege that could determine its own future.

Hundreds of casualties were reported in the fighting, including shelling that sliced through a Kyiv apartment building and pummeled bridges and schools.

Zelenskyy was urged to evacuate Kyiv at the behest of the U.S. government but turned down the offer. He said, "The fight is here" and that he needed anti-tank ammunition but "not a ride."

The Ukrainian President is winning hearts worldwide for his grit and bravery after he said that he would remain in the country's capital amid the Russian invasion, an actor turned politician encouraging his country to stay firm in a time of war.

Zelensky released a short video address on Friday, February 25, appearing unshaven and in a T-shirt, saying that despite misinformation, he was still in the capital, Kyiv.

"I remain in the capital, I remain with my people," Zelensky said.

"During the day, I held dozens of international talks, directly managing our country. And I will stay in the capital. My family is also in Ukraine. My children are also in Ukraine. My family are not traitors. They are citizens of Ukraine. But I have no right to say where they are now," he said.

Born in the central city of Kryvyi Rih to Jewish parents, Volodymyr Zelensky graduated from Kyiv National Economic University with a law degree. However, his true calling was always to be a successful comedian.

Journey From A Comedian To President

He rose to fame as a comedian, actor and producer. Before entering politics, he played the President of Ukraine on the popular television series "Servant of the People." In the show, Zelensky portrayed a high school teacher who is elected to the office after a video of him railing against corruption in the country goes viral. In 2018 his production company created a political party named after the show, and months later, Zelensky announced he was running for office, according to Yahoo News.

At 44, Zelensky was made the President of Ukraine after a landslide victory in 2019. His campaign was also not a usual one and was marked with controversy, and Igor Kolomoisky, Ukraine's wealthiest oligarchs, backed much of his campaigns.

His manifesto included promises to end the war with Russia and its separatist proxies in eastern Ukraine. He joined the office in 2019, but the promise of ending the war with Russia took another route. Though he tried to deal with Putin diplomatically, the Russian leader did not budge.

A Jew who grew up in central Ukraine amid the fall of the Soviet Union, Zelensky has forcefully denied Putin's baseless claims that part of Russia's invasion was intended to 'de-Nazify" Ukraine.

"The Ukraine on your news and Ukraine in real life are two completely different countries — and the main difference is ours is real," Zelensky said in a speech on February 23, just before the attacks were launched.

"You are told we are Nazis, but how can a people support Nazis that gave more than 8 million lives for the victory over Nazism? How can I be a Nazi? Tell my grandpa, who went through the whole war in the infantry of the Soviet army and died as a colonel in independent Ukraine," he said.

"We are different," he added, "but that is not a reason to be enemies. We want to determine, build our future ourselves, peacefully, calmly and honestly."

Also Read: Inspiring! Here's The Story How Anandibai Joshi Became India's First Female Doctor

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