Ievgen Ianyshyn visits the Ukrainian embassy in Abu Dhabi to cast his vote in his country’s presidential election. Mona Al Marzooqi / The National
Ievgen Ianyshyn visits the Ukrainian embassy in Abu Dhabi to cast his vote in his country’s presidential election. Mona Al Marzooqi / The National

Ukrainian expatriates vote in presidential elections

ABU DHABI // Hundreds of Ukrainians living in the UAE took time out to vote in their country’s presidential elections on Sunday.

More than 600 voters were expected to play their part in what they hoped would be Ukraine’s first step towards stability.

“I believe that for people who live outside of Ukraine, this is the least we can do to help our country, especially at this time,” said Ievgen Ianyshyn, who has been working at the duty-free shops at Abu Dhabi Airport for nine months. “It’s a very sensitive time for Ukraine and I believe everyone who is outside the country should participate.”

He said he was concerned about his brother, who enlisted in the army last month.

“I really worry about the situation in Ukraine and I hope that, after these elections, everything is going to calm down,” he said. “This is the time we’ve been waiting for and, hopefully, in a few weeks everything will be fine.”

Although his family lives in south Ukraine, which is relatively calm, he still feels uneasy.

“We still can’t be sure because every day anything can change in a minute,” said Mr Ianyshyn, who had his country’s flag draped around his shoulders. “I love my country, I do what I can to support it and I say ‘Slava Ukraini’, which means glory to Ukraine.”

Denis and Ina Musiyichuk, who came to the polling station wearing traditional Ukrainian outfits, said the day marked an important moment for Ukrainians around the world.

“All our family and friends are voting today, whether there or abroad,” Mr Musiyichuk said. “In general, presidential elections are important but at this particular moment in Ukraine, it’s crucial because the country is apparently at war and the new president will be able to sort things out.

“We really hope that the situation will calm down and Ukraine will prosper and become a stable, civilised and rich country.”

They couple were hopeful enough about the future to book flights for a trip home.

“We visit twice a year and, fingers crossed, we will go back this summer,” Mrs Musiyichuk said. “It depends on the outcome of the elections.”

“If these presidential elections are not recognised or Russia moves forward and the escalation of the situation becomes worse, it will be quite dangerous,” Mr Musiyichuk said. “We really don’t think it’ll happen and we hope for the best.”

Maryna Tuzhanska, a 21-year-old student at NYU Abu Dhabi, said voting was a personal responsibility.

“It’s one of the few ways we have to show our opinion to the government and it’s not to be missed,” she said. “No matter what side the citizens support, I think we all unite in the hope for peace these days, and that should be the main goal for everyone.

“Most people are much more aware of the situation and it’s a big chance for a change.”

Voter turnout was expected to increase from 65 per cent in previous elections to more than 80 per cent, said Yuriy Polurez, the Ukrainian ambassador to the UAE.

“According to preliminary estimates, today will be a very high turnout in Ukraine, with more than 80 per cent because it is very crucial,” he said. “It is an extremely important day for my country and these are the most important elections.

“Today, Ukrainian people vote for freedom, independence and for a European choice.”

He said he was optimistic that the election would lead to peace.

“The reason there was a trigger of these very sad events in my country was the refusal of the former president to sign the European Union Association Agreement, so we believe that the new president will start this work as soon as possible and we hope he will help us towards stabilisation and normalisation in Ukraine, especially in the eastern regions.”

With more than 600 of the 5,000 Ukrainians living in the UAE expected to vote and 114 polling stations outside Ukraine, Mr Polurez said he hoped that the election would mark the start of a brighter future. “We’re optimistic and we pray for Ukraine.”


Director: Nikhil Nagesh Bhat

Starring: Lakshya, Tanya Maniktala, Ashish Vidyarthi, Harsh Chhaya, Raghav Juyal

Rating: 4.5/5

The details

Heard It in a Past Life

Maggie Rogers

(Capital Records)


Company profile

Company name: Fasset
Started: 2019
Founders: Mohammad Raafi Hossain, Daniel Ahmed
Based: Dubai
Sector: FinTech
Initial investment: $2.45 million
Current number of staff: 86
Investment stage: Pre-series B
Investors: Investcorp, Liberty City Ventures, Fatima Gobi Ventures, Primal Capital, Wealthwell Ventures, FHS Capital, VN2 Capital, local family offices

Company Profile

Name: Direct Debit System
Started: Sept 2017
Based: UAE with a subsidiary in the UK
Industry: FinTech
Funding: Undisclosed
Investors: Elaine Jones
Number of employees: 8


Juventus 1 (Dybala 45')

Lazio 3 (Alberto 16', Lulic 73', Cataldi 90+4')

Red card: Rodrigo Bentancur (Juventus)

Employment lawyer Meriel Schindler of Withers Worldwide shares her tips on achieving equal pay
Do your homework
Make sure that you are being offered a fair salary. There is lots of industry data available, and you can always talk to people who have come out of the organisation. Where I see people coming a cropper is where they haven’t done their homework.
Don’t be afraid to negotiate

It’s quite standard to negotiate if you think an offer is on the low side. The job is unlikely to be withdrawn if you ask for money, and if that did happen I’d question whether you want to work for an employer who is so hypersensitive.
Know your worth
Women tend to be a bit more reticent to talk about their achievements. In my experience they need to have more confidence in their own abilities – men will big up what they’ve done to get a pay rise, and to compete women need to turn up the volume.
Work together
If you suspect men in your organisation are being paid more, look your boss in the eye and say, “I want you to assure me that I’m paid equivalent to my peers”. If you’re not getting a straight answer, talk to your peer group and consider taking direct action to fix inequality.

Major honours


  • FA Cup - 2005


  • La Liga - 2013
  • Copa del Rey - 2012
  • Fifa Club World Cup - 2011


  • Premier League - 2015, 2017
  • FA Cup - 2018
  • League Cup - 2015


  • World Cup - 2010
  • European Championship - 2008, 2012

France 3
Umtiti (8'), Griezmann (29' pen), Dembele (63')

Italy 1
Bonucci (36')


Edinburgh: November 4 (unchanged)

Bahrain: November 15 (from September 15); second daily service from January 1

Kuwait: November 15 (from September 16)

Mumbai: January 1 (from October 27)

Ahmedabad: January 1 (from October 27)

Colombo: January 2 (from January 1)

Muscat: March 1 (from December 1)

Lyon: March 1 (from December 1)

Bologna: March 1 (from December 1)

Source: Emirates


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Started: 2018
Founder: Rick Parish
Based: Abu Dhabi, UAE
Industry: Clean cooking
Funding: $10 million
Investors: Self-funded


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Started: 2018
Founder: Siddiq Farid and Musfique Ahmed
Based: Dubai
Sector: FinTech / PropTech
Initial investment: $650,000
Current number of staff: 35
Investment stage: Series A
Investors: Various institutional investors and notable angel investors (500 MENA, Shurooq, Mada, Seedstar, Tricap)

Company Profile

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Date started: January 2022
Founders: Premlal Pullisserry and Lijo Antony
Based: Dubai
Number of staff: 30
Investment stage: Seed


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Started: December 2023
Founder: Ivan Kroshnyi
Based: Dubai, UAE
Industry: Electric vehicles
Investors: Bootstrapped with undisclosed funding. Looking to raise funds from outside

Top 10 most polluted cities
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  2. Ghaziabad, India
  3. Hotan, China
  4. Delhi, India
  5. Jaunpur, India
  6. Faisalabad, Pakistan
  7. Noida, India
  8. Bahawalpur, Pakistan
  9. Peshawar, Pakistan
  10. Bagpat, India

Bio Box

Role Model: Sheikh Zayed, God bless his soul

Favorite book: Zayed Biography of the leader

Favorite quote: To be or not to be, that is the question, from William Shakespeare's Hamlet

Favorite food: seafood

Favorite place to travel: Lebanon

Favorite movie: Braveheart

Price, base / as tested From Dh173,775 (base model)
Engine 2.0-litre 4cyl turbo, AWD
Power 249hp at 5,500rpm
Torque 365Nm at 1,300-4,500rpm
Gearbox Nine-speed auto
Fuel economy, combined 7.9L/100km

The biog

Name: Abeer Al Shahi

Emirate: Sharjah – Khor Fakkan

Education: Master’s degree in special education, preparing for a PhD in philosophy.

Favourite activities: Bungee jumping

Favourite quote: “My people and I will not settle for anything less than first place” – Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid.

Company Profile

Company name: Hoopla
Date started: March 2023
Founder: Jacqueline Perrottet
Based: Dubai
Number of staff: 10
Investment stage: Pre-seed
Investment required: $500,000

Dengue fever symptoms
  • High fever
  • Intense pain behind your eyes
  • Severe headache
  • Muscle and joint pains
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Swollen glands
  • Rash

If symptoms occur, they usually last for two-seven days


Company name: Klipit

Started: 2022

Founders: Venkat Reddy, Mohammed Al Bulooki, Bilal Merchant, Asif Ahmed, Ovais Merchant

Based: Dubai, UAE

Industry: Digital receipts, finance, blockchain

Funding: $4 million

Investors: Privately/self-funded

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