Russian opposition politician Gaidar in process of acquiring Ukrainian citizenship, ready to renounce Russian

Russian opposition politician and public figure Maria Gaidar, who has left for Ukraine and is preparing to take the office of deputy head of the Odesa regional administration, is in the process of acquiring Ukrainian citizenship.

Russian opposition politician and public figure Maria Gaidar, who has left for Ukraine and is preparing to take the office of deputy head of the Odessa regional administration, is in the process of acquiring Ukrainian citizenship.

Speaking at a press conference in Odessa on July 22, Gaidar told journalists that she had prepared the necessary documents. She did not make it clear whether the documents have been submitted to the Ukrainian president.

Gaidar said also that, if need be, she was prepared to renounce Russian citizenship, although she admitted that this would be a hard step for her to make.

"I'd really like to hope that I'll still have the chance to build something better in Russia," Gaidar said. "But if it's necessary, I'll renounce it," she said.

Gaidar also said she had suspended the acquisition of an Israeli citizenship, the start of which she had earlier announced to Russian media.

As concerns her status in Ukraine, Gaidar said she is currently acting as deputy head of the Odessa regional administration, although she could not explain how she could be performing these duties not being a Ukrainian citizen.

In outlining her working plans in the current office, Gaidar said she would focus on helping people solve their legal problems and interacting with volunteers, internally displaced persons, pensioners, and other groups.

It was reported earlier that head of the Odessa regional administration Mikheil Saakashvili had announced Gaidar's appointment as his deputy in charge of social matters on July 17. Saakashvili said that, to be confirmed in this capacity, Gaidar would have to acquire Ukrainian citizenship.

Maria Gaidar is a daughter of a prominent Russian statesman, policymaker, and ideologist of Russia's economic reforms of the 1990s Yegor Gaidar. She was born in 1982. Maria Gaidar is a politician, public figure, and journalist of Echo of Moscow radio. She is also the founder and manager of the Social Inquiry social assistance and support foundation.

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