MOSCOW, June 7. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin has promised assistance in obtaining Russian citizenship to Ukrainian interpreter Irina Barakat, wounded in a militant attack in Syria’s Aleppo two years ago and airlifted to St. Petersburg.
In his annual Q&A session, Putin also pledged assistance in her seeing the family. Irina’s husband and children are Syrian nationals.
"I will ask the Defense Ministry to find your family and bring them to Russia," Putin said. "What you are asking for - Russian citizenship, is within the competence of the Russian president, and you will get it," Putin said. "Your case is a special one, it is your misfortune and a tragedy - all that happened to you. I hope your children know that their mother is getting well," the president said.
He expressed gratitude to military medics and pledged all necessary support. "We understand perfectly well what injuries you received," Putin said.
In the summer of 2016, Ukrainian national Irina Barakat lost a hand and a leg sheltering children as militants were shelling Aleppo. She was injured by a shell flying into her apartment and was airlifted to St. Petersburg on a military-transport plane.
For the past 13 years, Irina Barakat has lived in Syria, where she gave birth to two sons and a daughter.