Ukrainian beauty queen picks up rifle, ready to defend her country

She has called Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy 'a true and strong leader'

Ukrainian beauty queen picks up rifle claims she will kill 'invaders'

Anastasia Lenna, a Ukrainian model who represented her country at the 2015 Miss Grand International beauty pageant, has gone viral after sharing an image donned in army boots while holding an assault rifle.

“Everyone who crosses the Ukrainian border with the intent to invade will be killed!” she captioned a photo of armed soldiers blocking a road. The post was shared just before Russia invaded Ukraine last week, February 24.

Another post read: "Our [Ukraine's] army is fighting in such a way that NATO should apply for entry into Ukraine."

Ukraine is a former Soviet republic bordering both Russia and the European Union. It is not a member of NATO states, but it is a partnering country that may be allowed to join the alliance sometime in the future.

At the time she first shared the post, Lenna had 75,000 followers on Instagram but as at the time of reporting, the model had garnered over 211,000 followers.

Since the launch of the invasion, the model has shared a string of posts urging support and encouraging donations to the Ukrainian armed forces.

She also posted a photo showing soldiers walking with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, who she called "a true and strong leader".

Lenna, a marketing and management graduate from Slavic University in Kyiv, previously worked as a model and public relations manager in Turkey. She has also worked as a translator and speaks five languages.

Pictures have started to emerge as Russian and Ukrainian officials meet to discuss the conflict at the Ukraine-Belarus border.

Ahead of the meeting, President Zelenskyy said his country wanted an immediate ceasefire and the withdrawal of Russian troops. Meanwhile, Russia says it wants to reach an agreement that benefits both sides.

On the fifth day following the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the people of Kyiv were seen emerging from their homes after a weekend-long curfew.

Since the curfew was imposed on Saturday night, there has been increased security protocols within the city - more checkpoints, more sandbags, and hypervigilance.

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