‘You’re a cossack now’ Ukranians give PM new title and celebrate ‘freedom-loving hair’

Ukraine: Boris Johnson walks through Kyiv with Zelensky in April

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Boris Johnson has been inducted into Ukraine’s Cossack community, with a name that pays tribute to his blond hair. The Prime Minister has been called “Boris Chuprina”, which means ”long lock of hair” by the Cossack community in Chernihiv in northern Ukraine. And two local Ukrainian artists have painted Mr Johnson playing the kobza, a Ukrainian folk instrument which will be displayed at a local Ukrainian Museum and the original painting will be sent to number 10 Downing street in London to celebrate his ”Freedom-loving haircut”.

The Cossacks are a semi-nomadic people who originated in the steppes of Ukraine and Russia and fought for Ukrainian independence while the country was stuck between present-day Poland and Russia.

The Cossacks are central to Ukraine’s identity, akin to the medieval knights of Europe and the Japenese Samurai.

A diploma certifying the Prime Minister’s initiation will be sent to Downing Street.

Andriy Lisovy, deputy director of the Chernihiv regional museum, told a Ukrainian public Television station on Tuesday: ”The Cossack title for the Prime Minister was a ‘sign of respect and gratitude to this outstanding person who has been supporting Ukraine.’”

The Prime Minister is now in the official Cossacks registry under a family name, after finishing signing a treaty with Russia in the 17th century.

Cossacks have become a force to defend the borders of the Russian Empire.

Mr Lisoby said the Prime Minister’s sign-off on Instagram in the Ukrainian style ”Johsonyuk” gave them the idea.

He said: ”It wasn’t our idea. He gave us a hint of what to do.

”As Mr Johnson was entered into the official Cossack registry, the community gave him a new local name.”

Mr Lisovy added: “Why Chuprina? You can see that he has such a freedom-loving haircut, which underlines his personality, and his strong will.”

“You can see it in his face that he is a great person. That’s what we wanted to stress so what when someone says ‘Boris Chuprina’, people immediately will know whom they’re talking about.”

The Ukrainian museum mentioned that giving Cossack titles to foreigners is extremely rare for Ukrainians but they are extremely honoured to be giving the name to Mr Johnson.

US Naval Officer John Paul Jones, who is often called the father of the United States Navy and who served in modern-day Ukraine under the Russian empire, was officially inducted into the Cossack brotherhood in the 18th century.

Mr Johnson won a vote of confidence in his leadership on Monday night after 148 of his MPs voted to oust him from Downing Street, while 211 MPs voted for him to stay as Conservative party leader.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said on Tuesday that Mr Johnson’s confidence vote win was “great news” and added: “I am glad we have not lost a very important ally.

He added: “I do not know who was responsible for this decision yesterday but I’m glad we have not lost a very important ally. This is great news. That is all I can say.”

Mr Johnson was challenged by his backbench MPs Monday after mounting outrage over multiple Covid lockdown-breaking parties by Government staff.

The confidence vote victory will allow him to limp on as leader for now, despite 41 percent of his party colleagues now wanting him gone as Prime Minister.

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