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Ukraine’s first lady attends London meeting on sexual violence

LONDON (AP) – Russian soldiers should be held accountable for raping Ukrainian women and committing other acts of sexual violence during Russia’s war in Ukraine, the country’s first lady, Olensa Zelenska, said at an international conference on sexual violence. of clashes on Monday.

Zelenska told the London summit that sexual abuse was being carried out “systematically and openly” as the war in Ukraine continued. Phone recordings show Russian soldiers openly discussing raping their family members, Zelenska said.

“Sexual violence is the cruelest and most animalistic way to prove one’s superiority. For victims of this kind of violence, it is difficult to testify in times of war because no one feels safe”, she said.

“This is another tool that they are using as their weapon. This is another weapon that they are stockpiling for this war and conflict. That is why they are using this systematically and openly,” she added.

Zelenska then visited Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s official residence at No. 10 Downing Street. She was welcomed by Sunak’s wife, Akshata Murty, and the two women decorated the Christmas tree outside their residence for photographers.

Zelenska is expected to address British lawmakers on Tuesday as part of her U.K. visit.

Sunak visited the Ukrainian capital Kyiv earlier this month, where he pledged the UK’s continued support for Ukraine in its war with Russia.

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