The first lady of Ukraine has urged Russians to watch Euronews and not Russia Today as she talks about the disinformation being spread about the war in Ukraine and the need to expose the truth.
“I can honestly say that it is very difficult for us to talk to Russians. In short, watch Euronews, don’t watch Russia Today, don’t watch Channel One, don’t watch Russia Channel. And this is already the first to heal a step,” Olena Zelenska told EuronewsNext at a press conference at the Web Summit in Lisbon.
The First Lady also said social media companies should not hide content for victims of the war in Ukraine as sensitive material.
“I put up a picture of a girl who died in the shelling, a girl I used to know with a pink pram,” she said.
“And it was hidden by social media as sensitive material. I think that’s wrong. Don’t try to avoid it, because it is the truth. And the world should know the truth.”
Zelenska said she had not spoken to Facebook or Instagram about the hidden content, but said: “I think at this point we can see double standards when we talk about it. They talk about moral values.” do what needs to be hidden and what is sensitive.”
The work of the Olena Zelenska Foundation
The first lady spoke to highlight the work of the Olena Zelenska Foundation, a charity she founded in September with the aim of empowering Ukrainians to feel mentally and physically healthy and build a future in their country in the aftermath of the Russian invasion. did.
While he warned attendees at the Web Summit in a speech earlier on Tuesday that the technology was being actively used to kill civilians, he also pointed out how his foundation was being used for good. Is.
“There are many options for how we can help and use technology for the better,” she said, adding that one of the foundation’s main projects is prosthetics.
“Unfortunately, we have dozens of children who have lost their limbs to explosions, you know, to mines.”
Zelenska said that while there have been many surgeries for prosthetics in the United States, she hoped her foundation could fund bionic prosthetics for use in Ukraine, allowing the mind to control the prosthetics.
“We hope that with the help of the Foundation, these campaigns can be better organized and we can get more out of them,” he added.
Another way technology can help the injured is through hearing aids. Zelenska said many people have lost their hearing due to shell shock and many of the foundation’s partners provide special hearing aids.
Another issue close to his heart is Ukraine’s mental health. The First Lady has established a national program to provide psychological support.
coping with war trauma
“We made a camp; not just any camp, but a camp for kids with different levels of PTSD and different levels of trauma. And the stories I’ve heard from these kids are horrific,” she said.
“From the boy who buried his mother with his own hands, to four brothers who watched their parents die before their eyes, to a boy who came to the camp unable to speak.”
She said the family were called to a courtyard and “faced by a Russian firing squad and asked to say goodbye to each other”.
He said the Russians fired into the air. Four children are in the support center and after 20 days of working with psychologists, they have “came back to life”.
But Zelenska noted that not only children were treated, but also a different large-scale demographic.
“Let’s talk about other vulnerable people. Let’s talk about retirees. Let’s talk about the disabled, veterans. And of course the demand will be huge.”
He said the foundation would become more important with the arrival of winter amid power outages caused by Russian attacks.
“It is a Russian goal to make people suffer not only from fear, but also from cold and darkness,” she said.
She urged the world to continue its support for Ukraine even as the war entered its eighth month.
“We understand that people are very tired. But you can only imagine how tired Ukrainians are. And when we talk about this fatigue, I want to say that if we surrender to this fatigue or if we give up this fatigue, we will surrender, end of story completely.”