War in Ukraine: Woman gives birth in UK after fleeing country

By Greig Watson
BBC News

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Lesia and Richard HusarImage source, Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust
Image caption,
Lesia Husar said it was a "big relief" to be at the City Hospital in Nottingham

A Ukrainian mother has thanked staff at a hospital after they arranged a WhatsApp call so her husband could meet their new child.

Lesia Husar, 41, fled the city of Chernivtsi just weeks ago to escape the danger from Russian military action.

She gave birth to Richard on Sunday with the father 1,200 miles away.

Mrs Husar said it was a "big relief" to be at City Hospital in Nottingham and that her husband Taras, who is still in Ukraine, could share in the birth.

Image source, PA Media
Image caption,
Mrs Husar said she left Ukraine due to the constant fear of Russian air raids

Staff at the hospital said Mrs Husar, who travelled with her 14-year-old daughter Renatta, did not want to leave her home when pregnant but she was constantly in fear of air raids.

She was welcomed by a host family in Woodthorpe, Nottinghamshire, and found her room stacked with supplies, a pram, cot and clothes, ready for the baby.

Richard weighed 4.5lb after a trouble-free birth.

Mr Husar, 41, who was wounded while fighting Russian forces in 2014, is serving as a voluntary policeman.

Mrs Husar said: "I am so grateful to everyone - my host family and their neighbours and the staff at the hospital here in Nottingham.

"I was so stressed during my pregnancy, which doctors have said might explain why Richard was so small when he was born, but it has been a big relief to be cared for in Nottingham by such kind and supportive doctors and midwives.

"I love my country and want to go back to Ukraine soon, hopefully by the summer, but the war must end first before I can take my children back there."

They had decided to call their son Richard before the war started but Mr Husar said the baby having an English name now felt right.

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