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Ukrainian Woman Unable To Enter UK To Be With Husband After War Halts Visa

Anish Vij

Published 
| Last updated 

Ukrainian Woman Unable To Enter UK To Be With Husband After War Halts Visa

Featured Image Credit: Supplied

A newly wed Ukrainian woman who was on the brink of getting her UK visa has been forced to stay in Ukraine amid Russia's invasion. Watch below as she gives an update from a metro station in Kharkiv:

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Ukraine citizen Olena Henley, 49, got married to British citizen Jonathan Henley, 54, last December.

After virtually completing all of the required tests to get a UK visa, she was a ’15-minute’ English exam away from being granted application.

Sadly, she is now unable to be with her husband in Britain after the test has been delayed until further notice due to the war.

Olena revealed: "We almost done all documents but the last step was English test and British Council cancelled because of the reason of safety on 19th of February, so we didn't make this last step.

"So, Jonathan left me and he returned to Britain to England. And I'm stuck here in Ukraine."

Supplied
Supplied

Speaking yesterday (25 February) she added: "This night we spent in metro [station] because it's dangerous and now again, we had explosions, too close to our house."

Jonathan who works for an events company based in Leicester is heartbroken with the current situation.

"She's nervous. She's incredible. She's very scared," Jonathan told LADbible.

"With the possibility of bombs dropping it's hard to comprehend."

Credit: Supplied
Credit: Supplied

New Zealand-born Jonathan met Olena online during the pandemic where it was difficult to meet because of restrictions.

However, after the pair tied the knot just a few months ago the couple are now facing another hurdle.

He explained: "She's had all the paperwork verified, etc. I was in Ukraine. I came back on Valentine's Day 14th of February, I flew back I changed my travel plans because of what may have happened.

"She had her final test, the tuberculosis test, done on Friday the 18th in Kyiv, and she's had her English test cancelled on the 19th which was in Kyiv a few days before.

"So we've got the paperwork and she is unable to sit the English test, without that we can't apply for visa.

"And when this mess is finally settled and dies down. It may be months before we can apply because I don't know how she does English tests. And this is what we're waiting on.

"She's with her family at the moment in the metro station.

"So that's where we are."

Credit: Supplied
Credit: Supplied

Olena gave an update today (26 February) and says she's staying in the metro with her mum, brother and dog.

She said: "I left metro and went home to have hot food some food and drink and maybe to rest a little bit but then it's 7 o'clock it's a notification we have identification about a lot of alarms, they can bomb us from aeroplanes or artillery strikes.

"So this is our this is our new reality."

A Government spokesperson told LADbible: “Our priority remains supporting British Nationals who are resident in Ukraine and their dependents who want to leave the country. We are working around the clock to process visa applications and are processing many applications in a matter of hours.

“The main Visa Application Centre in Kyiv has closed following the Russian Invasion but our centre in Lviv remains open for family members of British Nationals resident in Ukraine, and we have surged staff to the centres in nearby countries, including Poland, Moldova, Romania and Hungary. 

 “Ukrainian nationals are able to apply for visas from these centres and we have announced concessions for Ukrainians currently in the UK, to extend or switch their visa. 

“We are working with other European countries to ensure that responses to any migration issues are practical and in the best interests of the Ukrainian people.”

If you would like to donate to the Red Cross Emergency Appeal, which will help provide food, medicines and basic medical supplies, shelter and water to those in Ukraine, click here for more information. 

Topics: Russia, World News

Anish Vij
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