Banksy unveils Ukrainian mural in a town bombed by Russia

Banksy, an elusive British street artist, has painted a mural on a bombed-out building outside the Ukrainian capital, in what Ukrainians describe as an indomitable symbol of their country.

The world-famous graffiti artist posted, Friday evening, three photos of the artwork on Instagram – a gymnast performing standing on hands amid the rubble of a demolished building in the town of Borodinka, northwest of the Ukrainian capital, Kyiv.

It was written in the caption “Borodyanka, Ukraine”.

Together with cities like Bucha and Irbin, Borodinka was hard hit by Russian bombing and became a symbol of the devastation it wrought. Moscow attack Since February.

Russian forces briefly occupied the town before withdrawing in April.

“It’s a symbol that we don’t break,” Oleksiy Savochka, 32, told AFP on Saturday, referring to the graffiti. “And our country is unbreakable.”

A number of murals – Banksy style – appeared in and around Kyiv, leading Ukrainians to believe that the unknown street artist might be working in the war-torn country.

Other graffiti in Borodinka – whose origin the artist has not confirmed – show a small child throwing a man in judo uniform to the ground.

Ukraine, Russia, conflict and war
A local resident walks past graffiti on the wall of a destroyed building, painted in Banksy style but the artist has not confirmed its origin, in the town of Borodinka on November 12, 2022, amid the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Genia Savelov/AFP via Getty Images

The scene may be a possible reference to Russian President Vladimir Putin, who is a fan of martial arts.

“It’s a little boy against an old man and he has been defeated, he has already been defeated,” Bogdan Machai, a 30-year-old Ukrainian TV journalist, told AFP near the artwork.

“It is unbelievable that Banksy is here in Borodinka,” he added.

On the side of a destroyed building in Irvine, a third mural – also not confirmed by Banksy – shows a gymnast performing a bar routine despite apparently being injured and wearing a neck collar.

Topshot, Ukraine, Russia, conflict, war
TOPSHOT – Locals look at Banksy-style graffiti on the wall of a destroyed apartment building, but the artist remains uncertain of its origin, in Irbin, near Kyiv on November 12, 2022, amid the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Genia Savelov/AFP via Getty Images

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky announced on Friday Kherson “Our country” after Russia withdrew its forces from the strategic southern city.

Kherson was the first major urban center to fall after Putin ordered Russian forces into Ukraine on February 24.

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