Ukrainian women soldiers choose to fight Russia, not flee

Ukrainian women soldiers choose to fight Russia, not flee

When Russia invaded Ukraine last month, Olga Kovalenko and Alona Bushynska did not abandon their home country. They instead volunteered to join Ukraine’s military forces.

Just last month, Olga Kovalenko moved into her first apartment in Kyiv, Ukraine, and got engaged to her longtime boyfriend. Now she spends mornings cleaning her rifles and pulling people out of bomb-stricken homes.

When Ukraine enacted martial law and banned men 18 to 60 years old from leaving the country after Russia’s Feb. 24 invasion, Kovalenko knew she’d never forgive herself if she left her homeland. She called her parents and volunteered to join Ukraine’s military forces.

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