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Sophie, the Duchess of Edinburgh, visits the Romanivska Bridge on April 29, 2024 in Irpin, Ukraine. The Duchess of Edinburgh became the first royal to visit Ukraine since the start of the Russian invasion. The visit, to demonstrate solidarity with the women, men, and children impacted by the war, is a continuation of her work to champion survivors of conflict-related sexual violence. (Anatolii Stepanov - Pool/Getty Images)
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Sophie, the Duchess of Edinburgh, traveled to Ukraine on April 29 for a one-day visit on behalf of the Foreign Office to "demonstrate solidarity with the women, men and children impacted by the war." She has become the first member of the Royal Family to visit Ukraine since the Russian invasion.

The Duchess met with President Volodymyr Zelensky and paid her respects to those who had lost their lives in the town of Bucha on the outskirts of Kyiv during the Russian occupation in 2022, BBC reported.

The Royal Family has displayed an unusual level of outspoken support for Ukraine, notably with King Charles condemning the "indescribable aggression" and "unprovoked attack" by Russia on the second anniversary of the invasion in February.

During state visits to France and Germany, the King emphasized the significance of backing Ukraine. Additionally, the late Queen Elizabeth II's sympathies were implied when she appeared alongside a large bowl of flowers arranged in the colors of the Ukrainian national flag.

Before this unexpected visit by the Duchess of Edinburgh, who is married to Prince Edward, the youngest brother of the King, none of the royals had made a trip to Ukraine during the war.

In her meeting with President Zelensky and First Lady Olena Zelenska, the duchess gave them a private message from King Charles and discussed support for survivors of sexual violence in conflicts. The Duchess has supported the Preventing Sexual Violence in Conflict Initiative, which aims to raise awareness of the extent of sexual violence against women, men, girls, and boys in situations of armed conflict and rally global action to end it.

Former UK Armed Forces minister: ‘Ukraine defeat will cost trillions to West in new Cold War’
James Heappey said that Kyiv will need more aid packages to win the battle for “security across the whole European-Atlantic region.”

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