• Europe

Stars post messages in support of Ukraine on social media

Following Russia’s military invasion of Ukraine, athletes and cultural figures around the world have been posting messages on Instagram and other social media protesting the war and wishing for peace.

Former football player Andriy Shevchenko, who played for Ukraine’s national team, posted a message on social media saying, “My people and my family are under attack.”

The message featured a photo of the country’s national flag and a statue in Kyiv’s Independence Square.

“We only want peace. War is not the answer,” wrote Shevchenko, 45.

The former AC Milan striker’s message had received more than 200,000 likes by noon Tuesday.

Ukrainian skeleton racer Vladyslav Heraskevych posted a photo of himself wearing his Olympic uniform with the message: “All international friends, thank you for support! Every your single voice can save Ukraine.”

The 23-year-old attracted media attention for flashing a message to the cameras opposing war in Ukraine at the Beijing Winter Olympics, which closed just before the invasion.

Hollywood stars are also speaking out.

Actress Milla Jovovich, 46, who appeared in the “Resident Evil” movie series, posted: “I am heartbroken and dumbstruck trying to process the events of this week in my birthplace of Ukraine … My blood and my roots come from both Russia and Ukraine. I am torn in two.”

Russian athletes have also posted messages condemning the Kremlin’s aggression.

Soccer player Fedor Smolov, 32, who plays for Russia’s national team, posted an all-black image, with the words “No war!” in Russian.

Alexei Yagudin, 41, the gold medalist in men’s figure skating at the 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Olympics, also posted an all-black image, with the message, “Stop this nonsense!”

Tennis player Naomi Osaka, 24, tweeted “Sitting here looking at the news and I can’t believe what I’m seeing … I hope you know we’re thinking of you and praying for you,” with two heart emojis in yellow and blue, the colors of the Ukrainian flag.

Soccer star Keisuke Honda, 35, who played for a Russian club, tweeted “Stop the war” and “This is no longer someone else’s business.”

World-renowned artist Yoshitomo Nara, 62, posted an illustration of a girl praying with her hands clasped with the message “Stop the bombs.”