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14 Aug, 2022 17:37

Russia ridicules Ukrainian ambassador for ‘begging'

Kiev's envoy to Australia Vasily Miroshnichenko, a successful businessman, is attempting to crowdfund his daughter’s education
Russia ridicules Ukrainian ambassador for ‘begging'

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova has shamed Ukraine’s ambassador to Australia, Vasily Miroshnichenko, for “begging and vagrancy,” after he launched a crowdfunding appeal to send his daughter to a top-tier London university.

“It’s not a joke,” Zakharova wrote in a Telegram post on Sunday, explaining that the ambassador had posted a link to the crowdfunding page on his official Facebook and Twitter accounts.

“First, he wrote how he showed his daughter American universities, and then he reported that she chose a British education after his fascinating stories,” Zakharova continued. 

“Begging and vagrancy are the basis of the Kiev regime’s ‘diplomacy,’” she added, remarking that Ukraine “was squandered” through such grift.

In a Facebook post last month, Miroshnichenko said that he had taken his daughter, Yaroslava (Yasia), on a road trip to California to look at universities four years ago. With Yasia recently turning 19, he said that she had chosen not to attend any of the US schools, and would instead study chemistry and management at University College London, an institution rated 18th in the world on the Times Higher Education rankings.

Miroshnichenko posted a link to a crowdfunding appeal by Yasia, who is seeking £30,000 ($36,400) to cover tuition and living costs for her first year in London. 

Yasia wrote on the crowdfunding website that she had been granted a British visa under a scheme for Ukrainian refugees and qualified for domestic tuition. At UCL, this means that she will pay the same £9,250 per year rate as British students, instead of the £31,200 charged to international students. 

“It’s still a huge amount of money for my family to pull off,” she wrote. “Therefore, I need your support.”

Miroshnichenko has served as Ukraine’s ambassador to Australia and New Zealand since March. Although his net worth is not publicly available, it is highly unlikely that his family cannot afford Yasia’s university fees. The diplomat is the CEO of a consultancy firm in Kiev and the co-founder of a Ukrainian media NGO. He is also described by the Ukrainian Catholic University in Lviv as “a long-time friend and donor” of the institution.