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As war rages, Ukrainian-American couple with newborn, stranded in Kyiv, open bakery
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As war rages, Ukrainian-American couple with newborn, stranded in Kyiv, open bakery

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A Ukrainian-American couple who traveled from New York to Kyiv for business say they could not escape the Ukrainian capital city before the war broke out Feb. 24 because they welcomed a new baby just days before the Russian invasion, which prevented them from leaving. Now they’re turning to the bread business to supplement their income.

International officials “were telling people you have to leave because there is the possibility of war but my wife being nine months pregnant [made that] impossible,” said Sergii Nosenko.

Ukrainian service members carry containers backdropped by a blaze at a warehouse after a bombing on the outskirts of Kyiv, Ukraine, Thursday, March 17, 2022.
(Associated Press)

Nosenko, an American green-card holder, and his wife Daria, who was born in Ukraine but has American citizenship, say they left New York last fall to visit family and seek business opportunities in their home country.

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“We lived in New York for over ten years now,” said Daria.

But after arriving, and as an apparent war with Russia became more of a reality, Daria, then nine months pregnant, could not leave the country.

“Now he’s a month old,” Daria said, referring to her child, “and we can’t really go back to the U.S. because the U.S. Embassy left the country.”

Further complicationsFurther complicating their situation is that Sergii, who unsuccessfully ran as a candidate in the 2019 Ukrainian presidential election, isn’t yet at U.S. citizen and falls within the Ukrainian fighting age and therefore cannot leave Ukraine’s borders.

The couple poses after getting married
(Sergii and Daria Nosenko)

“Ukrainians under 60, they cannot leave the country because of the military state,” Daria told Fox News.

With the war limiting business opportunities for Sergii, who works in finance, the couple turned to baking to make money.

“We had to come up with a different source of income so we started baking New York-style bagels and Italian focaccia bread and selling it to local stores,” Daria said.

The couple began baking New York style bagels in Ukraine
(Sergii and Daria Nosenko)

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The couple uses Instagram to promote their bakery products.

Even though Daria technically could leave the country to join millions of other refugees across Europe’s, the family plans to stay together for the long haul.

“We don’t want to separate,” Sergii said. “We consider [the U.S] our home.”

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