‘Wasn’t in Russian army, it was Soviet’ Klitschko corrects Eamonn over dads military ties

Ukraine: Mayor of Kyiv Vitali Klitschko says Putin is ‘unhealthy’

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Ukrainian former heavyweight champion boxer Wladimir Klitschko is currently fighting on the front line in Kyiv as the country faces eight weeks of attacks and invasion from Russian forces. To share his insight from the ground in Ukraine with GB News’ Eamonn Holmes and Isabel Webster, Wladimir beamed into the studio via video link to warn President Putin’s aggression would soon “be knocking on the door” of other countries if Russia isn’t forced to back down. However, when the former boxer faced questions about his father’s former military ties, he was forced to correct Eamonn for suggesting his dad had previous links to Russia.

“It is morning, I cannot say it’s a good morning because Ukraine has been invaded for the past 55 days,” Wladimir promptly said when he joined Eamonn and Isabel. 

When asked why he’d decided to join the Ukrainian forces, he sternly replied: “I’m proud of our country. The women and men who stand in arms to fight back against this Russian aggression. 

“I personally couldn’t be anywhere else but in Ukraine, where else could I be? I’m Ukrainian, I love my country,” he added before thanking the UK government for its support. 

Eamonn then turned his attention to how Wladimir would relay his message to those on the opposing side or in Russia – given his family’s supposed links with them.

“Wladimir, there’s so much we want to talk about,” Eamonn cut in. “But just during your conversation there, you talked about how proud you were to become Ukrainian. 

“Yet, my friend, your father was part of the Russian army, the Russian Air Force. 

“You lived in Russian army camps as I understand as children as you went around different postings. 

“How do you reach out to people who you may have grown up with, people who you understand… is this Putin’s war or is it Russia’s war?” the GB News presenter quizzed.

Wladimir emphatically hit back, however, keen for there not to be any crossed wires with Eamonn’s line of questioning.

“I will correct you if I understand you right,” he replied. “My father was never in the Russian army, he was in the Soviet army. 

“As I was born for instance in 1976, in Kazakhstan which was part of the Soviet Union and there was Soviet army and later on Ukrainian army. 

“And these are important facts,” he emphasised before delving further into his father’s impact on himself and his brother Vitali.

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He said: “The education that our father gave to Vitali, my older brother, and myself, this army discipline and focus, agility and endurance, that was important to have those principles that our father gave us for school, for being an athlete, to stand against any challenge and face the challenge that is in front of you. 

“And it’s actually continuing in further life, there’s no other way (but then) with those principles – especially with endurance. 

“55 days, it’s a long time – especially when every day your country is getting assaulted by the Russian forces as it is. 

“Us Ukrainians need to hold up, stand together. (We’re) waiting for more support from our partners and allies, and getting that support so we can fight back. 

“So endurance is (important) for what’s in front of us, and in front of us is one of the strongest armies in the world but we stand strong because our will is strong.”

Wladimir’s interview came hours after Russia launched an assault to seize the eastern Donbas region, according to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

Forces bombarded cities in the region with rocket and artillery fire on Monday following a failed size of the capital Kyiv.

Eight civilians killed in the city of Kreminna in Luhansk and in the Donetsk area in Donbas.

Breakfast with Eamonn and Isabel airs weekdays at 6am on GB News.

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