July 7, 2022

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Foreign military assistance is so important to Ukraine’s defense against Russia that a Ukrainian business is paying homage with new products: silk toy versions of Russian troops’ back-breaking weapons.

Kopytsia, an online store founded in 1998 in the Chernihiv region of Ukraine, published a line calling it “patriotic soft toys” in honor of the country’s opposition to Russia and the support it has received.

Among the toys offered were cluttered versions of Bayraktar TB3s, Turkish-made drones that played a key role in Ukraine’s defense, and javelins used by Ukraine to destroy Russian tanks on the battlefield.

There is also a miniature, 20-inch version of the heaviest Miriam cargo plane ever built until it was destroyed in battle for Antonov Airport outside Kiev in the early days of Russia’s invasion in February.

Maria Kobitzia, who runs the family business with her father Anatoly, said she “maintains the patriotic spirit of our country and supports Ukraine’s armed forces.”

Mrs. who remained in Ukraine throughout the war. Gopitsia, the family introduced a product line that boosted morale during the first two weeks of the war, but was unable to deliver due to fierce fighting throughout northern Ukraine, including the Chernihiv region. Capital and other major cities.

Each toy costs between $ 8 and $ 12. Mrs. Gopitsia said the sale of toys would go a long way in paying their workers.

On Sunday, a photo posted by Ukrainian journalist Olga Tokaryuk showing Ms. Kopitsia’s toys for sale in a shop in western Ukraine went viral, and Ms. Kopitsia says that despite some online criticism that there is a risk of militarizing Ukrainian children, there is growing interest in them.

Ms. Gopitsia said she was grateful for Western assistance to Ukraine.

“If we can protect our country with their help, if I can live in an independent Ukraine, I have everything for it,” he said.