President Volodymyr Zelensky lauded Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher for raising roughly $ 35 million to support refugees fleeing war-torn Ukraine.
The 44-year-old Ukrainian president had a video call with the celebrity couple on Sunday to discuss their work, as the number of Ukrainian refugees surged past 3.2 million, according to the most recent United Nations data.
Kutcher, 44, and Kunis, 38, who was born in Chernivtsi, Ukraine, launched a GoFundMe on March 3 to fund San Francisco-based companies Flexport and Airbnb. Flexport is a freight transportation company bringing supplies to refugees across Europe and Airbnb is providing them with free, short-term housing.
The president tweeted words of praise for the pair, writing that they were ‘among the first to respond to our grief.’ He went on to say, ‘They have already raised $ 35 million & are sending it to @flexport & @ Airbnb to help [Ukrainian flag] refugees. ‘
President Volodymyr Zelensky had a video call with Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher to commend them for raising roughly $ 35 million for Ukrainian refugees
Kutcher retweeted a message from the politician on Sunday, which featured a photo of an open laptop with the couple and Zelensky having a chat
He completed his message writing, ‘Grateful for their support. Impressed by their determination. They inspire the world. #StandWithUkraine. ‘
Kutcher, 44, retweeted a message from the politician on Sunday, which featured a photo of an open laptop with the couple and Zelensky, 44, having a chat. Kunis also tweeted the photo as well, but added no caption.
Zelensky also said in a Monday statement that Ashton and Mila are a ‘star couple who sincerely believe in us, in our victory, in our future.’
‘They help IDPs [internally displaced refugees] by raising funds. And the two of them have already raised [close to] $ 35 million, ‘he said.
‘I thanked them on behalf of our people, on behalf of all of us. This is a good result for one couple of our friends in America, ‘Zelensky said.
The grateful leader then added, ‘We are working to make the whole world our friends.’
Zelensky also said in a Monday statement that Ashton and Mila are a ‘star couple who sincerely believe in us, in our victory, in our future’
On Thursday the pair revealed they hit their $ 30million fundraising goal to benefit Ukrainian refugees just two weeks into launching the program
On Thursday, the couple took to Instagram to reveal that they hit their $ 30million fundraising goal to benefit Ukrainian refugees just two weeks into launching the program.
The couple initially vowed to match up to $ 3million in donations to help provide ‘immediate’ humanitarian aid to Ukrainian refugees when they launched the GoFundMe page on March 3.
‘We just want to say that we hit our goal,’ Kunis said in the clip before Kutcher added: ‘Over $ 30million dollars raised.
‘Over 65,000 of you donated. We are overwhelmed with gratitude of the support and while this is far from the solve of the problem, our collective effort will provide a softer landing to so many people as they forge ahead into their future of uncertainty, ‘Kunis said.
Kutcher also said, ‘Our work is not done. We’re going to do everything we can to ensure that the outpouring of love that came from you all as a part of this campaign finds a maximum impact with those in need. ‘
‘As funding continues to come in, we’re going to treat every dollar as if it’s being donated out of our pocket, with respect and honor for the work that went into earning it, with the intent of love through which it was given and the desire for it to be maximized for positive outcome for others. ‘
They also added their efforts were only just beginning and they were raising the bar even higher with a new $ 40million goal.
‘Ukrainians are proud and brave people who deserve our help in their time of need. This unjust attack on Ukraine and humanity at large is devastating and the Ukrainian people need our support, ‘reads a description on the couple’s GoFundMe page.
The couple initially vowed to match up to $ 3million in donations to help provide ‘immediate’ humanitarian aid to Ukrainian refugees when they launched the GoFundMe page on March 3
‘While we are witnessing the bravery of Ukrainians, we are also bearing witness to the unimaginable burden of those who have chosen safety. Countless amounts of people have left everything they know and love behind to seek refuge. With nothing but what they could carry, these Ukrainian refugees are in need of housing and supplies right away, ‘it adds.
The pair are not the only celebrities advocating for Ukraine, as celebrity Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds also pledged to match donations for Ukrainian refugees and Gigi Hadid donated her fashion month earnings to relief in Ukraine, CNN reported.
Zelensky’s video call with Kutcher and Kunis comes as President Joseph Biden gears up to travel to Europe and discuss the international response to ‘the humanitarian and human rights crisis that Russia’s unjustified and unprovoked war on Ukraine has created,’ White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki said late Sunday.
Biden will meet in Brussels with NATO Allies, G7 Leaders and European Union Leaders to discuss international efforts to support Ukraine as Russian forces continue to pummel their neighbor.
Biden will visit Warsaw on Friday, where he will hold a bilateral meeting with Polish President Andrzej Duda.
More than 2 million refugees have entered Poland from Ukraine since the start of the Russian invasion on Feb. 24, the Polish border guard said on Friday.
The White House also said Biden will host a call Monday at 11 am EST with President Emmanuel Macron of France, Chancellor Olaf Scholz of Germany, Prime Minister Mario Draghi of Italy and Prime Minister Boris Johnson of the United Kingdom to discuss their coordinated responses to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
United Nations data showed as of Thursday about 3.2 million have fled abroad from Ukraine since last month, in what has become Europe’s fastest growing refugee crisis since World War Two.
The UN said some of the 2 million people entering Poland from Ukraine have moved on to other countries in the EU but the ‘the majority are believed to be still in Poland.’
Biden will not visit Ukraine during his trip to Europe, Psaki said earlier Sunday after officials in Kyiv issued an open invitation to the president. US Ambassador to the United Nations Linda Thomas-Greenfield said earlier Sunday that a visit by Biden to war-ravaged Ukraine was ‘not on the table.’
‘This is a country at war. I can’t imagine that that would be on the table, ‘Thomas-Greenfield told CNN’s State of the Union host Jake Tapper on Sunday morning when asked about Biden visiting Ukraine.
Ahead of the trip this week, Biden was pictured Sunday on a bike ride in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, where he is visiting his vacation home for the weekend.
Refugees from Ukraine are seen standing in line for free train tickets in the hall of the main railway station in Przemysl, southeastern Poland, on Sunday. Ten million people – more than a quarter of the population – have now fled their homes in Ukraine since Russia’s invasion on February 24, the United Nations refugees chief said
Polish President Andrzej Duda will welcome President Joe Biden in Warsaw on Friday
Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko tweeted about several explosions, ‘in particular, according to information at the moment, some houses and in one of the shopping centers’
Ukrainian police officers stand near a warehouse that was hit by the debris of a downed rocket in Kyiv on Sunday
Meanwhile, Ukraine was experiencing its 25th day of attack from Russia, which has seen the death of 900 civilians, according to the United Nations.
Local authorities in the besieged Ukrainian port city of Mariupol say that the Russian military bombed an art school where about 400 people had taken refuge – reducing the building to rubble, although there is no immediate word on casualties.
Terrifying footage emerged apparently showing Russia firing deadly thermobaric TOS-1A rockets, which can allegedly melt human organs.
Authorities in Ukraine’s eastern city of Kharkiv say at least five civilians, including a nine-year-old boy, have been killed in the latest Russian shelling
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky’s chief diplomatic adviser Ihor Zhovka said Biden ‘should not be afraid’ to visit Kyiv ‘if you are brave’ enough.
Zhovka has requested that Biden facilitate Ukraine’s upcoming acquisition of US weapons, which include fighter jets and missiles.
The adviser also slammed Ukraine’s allies, alleging Zelensky is ‘disappointed’ in the US and NATO’s apparent rejection to fulfill the nation’s request to impose a no-fly zone over its airspace.
‘If NATO is not able to provide us with a humanitarian no-fly zone, please provide us with fighter jets, please provide us with anti-missile air defense systems,’ Zhovka said during a CNN interview, Mediaite reported. ‘So, my president will keep doing this. He spoke about this in the US Congress. He’s talking about this on a daily basis. ‘
Biden, who has not publicly issued a decision on Zelensky’s request, was warned earlier this week that imposing the no-fly zone would be an ‘act of war’. It remains unclear how Biden will proceed.