Euronews: Ukrainian soldiers are freezing their sperm


Many Ukrainian soldiers turn to fertility clinics to have their sperm frozen, fearing they will die in the war without leaving an heir.

Lying face down on the ground, Ukrainian soldier Vitaly Khronyuk, trying to protect himself from Russian artillery fire, knew he could die at any moment.

He only regretted one thing, that he never had a child.

“We want the child to be after us, to love… Leave something behind,” says Vitaly, a 29 years old Ukrainian soldier.

The young man who went to serve in the army in the early days of the war when Russia invaded Ukraine nearly a year ago.

At the time, he wasn’t thinking much about this issue and his future, and his priority was to defend the country.

After months spent on the battlefield, and with no hope that the war would soon end, Vitali realizes that he is not willing to sacrifice his dream of starting a family.

However, his decision to defend the country remains as firm as it was in the early days of the war.

But he came up with a solution, as he decided to keep his sperm cryogenic, allowing his partner, who became his wife shortly before, Anna Sokorenko, 24, to get pregnant if she wanted, and if something bad happened to her husband on the battlefront in Chernihiv, which is several miles from the border.

Several soldiers decided to do the same thing as Vitali, freezing their own sperm so that their wives could choose when to conceive and bear children, even if their husbands were killed on the battlefield.

Doctor Halina Strelko, who works at a private fertility clinic in Kiev, says that since the beginning of the Russian invasion, the clinic alone has recorded about 100 cases of soldiers freezing sperm.

This service has been available since 2014, when the conflict began in eastern Ukraine.

However, according to Dr. Halina Strelko, whose clinic actively promotes such a free service for the army, cryopreservation became very important at this stage of the war.

In an interview with Euronews, Dr. Halina, who has been working in fertility since 1998 said, “Actually, no one talks about it now, but when the war ends, we will have a very terrible demographic problem”.

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