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Ukrainian musician swaps guitar for rifle as he joins the military to fight Russians


Ukrainian musician Andriy Khlyvnyuk has joined the military to fight Russia’s invasion of his country.

The 42-year-old musician, who is a part of the band Boombox, made the announcement of his move on social media earlier this week.

According to Euronews, Khlyvnyuk dropped off his children at their grandmother’s house and returned to fight the war against Russia.

“I’ll take my kids to a safe house, to granny’s. And then I’ll return to follow the instructions of the government and if it’s needed I’ll take my gun and go fight for my country” he told the outlet.

The singer, who has more than 100m views on YouTube, also said that “musicians are peacemakers”. He added: “Now [is] not [the] time for playing guitars. It’s time to take the rifles.”

Ever since announcing his decision, Khlyvnyuk has been posting videos on social media, updating his fans about the situation in Ukraine.

In one video, he was also seen singing a song outside a church to uplift the spirits of those who are directly affected by this conflict.

On Sunday (27 February), Vladimir Putin placed Russia’s nuclear deterrence forces on high alert, citing aggressive statements by Nato leaders and economic sanctions against Moscow.

In the most recent update, a series of large explosions were heard in Kyiv on Wednesday (2 March) as Russia continues its bombardment of cities across Ukraine.

This comes as Russian troops appeared to have taken “complete control” of Kherson, the first major city to be captured during Putin’s war.

Follow the latest updates about the Russian invasion of Ukraine here.

The Independent has a proud history of campaigning for the rights of the most vulnerable, and we first ran our Refugees Welcome campaign during the war in Syria in 2015. Now, as we renew our campaign and launch this petition in the wake of the unfolding Ukrainian crisis, we are calling on the government to go further and faster to ensure help is delivered. To find out more about our Refugees Welcome campaign, click here. To sign the petition click here. If you would like to donate then please click here for our GoFundMe page.

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