Thursday 10 March 2022

65-year-old British floor-fitter drives to Ukraine to rescue his wife and her cat

Steve Lucas, 65, responded to his wife's desperate pleas to be taken out of Ukraine with Lucky her cat because of Putin's invasion which is destroying the country. Steve Lucas met his wife Anastasia five years ago while working in Ukraine. They tied the knot while he was in Ukraine but the problem is he can't get a visa for her to bring her to the UK. The UK has got quite tough since Brexit on immigration and that toughness has spilled over to presenting barriers for refugees from the Ukraine war. This is immoral and the Home Office should do much more.

65-year-old British floor fitter drives to Ukraine to rescue his wife and her cat
65-year-old British floor fitter drives to Ukraine to rescue his wife and her cat. Photo as per embedded credit.

Anyway, I digress. Steve lives in the UK and Anastasia lives in Kyiv, the capital of Ukraine. She managed to get a train to Lviv in the relatively peaceful west of the country where the Russian troops have yet to arrive in force where she met up with Steve. A family gave her and Lucky shelter in their home while they waited for Steve. Steve has cat supplies in his van such as cat litter and food.

Steve travelled 1,300 miles across Europe in his Citroen van. He travelled through 5 countries to rescue his wife and her cat Lucky. He said that it breaks his heart to know that Kyiv is being destroyed by the Russians because it is such a beautiful city. The area where Anastasia lived has been bombed and she tells us that there are bodies everywhere. And the Russians are killing women and children indiscriminately.

And what about the cat? Steve said: "She was adamant that she wouldn't leave unless she found someone to look after her cat Lucky". The solution has been found; Lucky is going to go to the UK with Anastasia. We don't know what happens next because there are continuing immigration problems even for refugees from war-torn Ukraine in France.

You may have read that the British immigration officials in Calais are making a mess of it. Refugees have to complete complicated forms and are being sent to Brussels or Paris as part of the immigration process. It sounds completely horrendous and utterly out of step with the circumstances under which these refugees find themselves.

Ukrainian refugees should be allowed through into the UK 'on the nod' without any substantial barriers. I believe in controlled immigration but under the circumstances UK can do a lot more to help. It is beholden upon northern European countries to do their best to help refugees. It will cost the UK and other European countries as is the war but we have to pay that price.

There may also be obstacles in getting Lucky into the UK as there are no longer pet passports for pets travelling from the EU to the UK since Brexit. The rules are complicated. Lucky will need vaccination certificates.  I have touched on this in an earlier article:

RELATED: EU’s bureaucratic pet transportation rules causing cats and dogs to be abandoned at border by Ukrainian refugees?

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