'Pirates of the Caribbean' star visits war-scarred east Ukraine

KIEV, UKRAINE- "Pirates of the Caribbean" star Orlando Bloom has paid an unannounced visit to war-scarred eastern Ukraine in his role as a goodwill ambassador for the United Nations Children's Emergency Fund.
Ukrainian television showed the 39-year-old British actor, who made his breakthrough as Legolas in "The Lord of the Rings", touring a school Wednesday in Slavyansk, a former pro-Russian rebel stronghold now under the Western-backed government's control.

In a video clip that went viral in Ukraine, Bloom was shown walking down the school's hallway with girls chasing him and shouting: "He is real! He is real! It's Legolas!"
Many Ukrainian social media users were convinced that the video was a fake, but Bloom's visit was soon confirmed by UNICEF.
"Orlando Bloom is in Ukraine on an official visit as a goodwill ambassador, and is meeting children affected during the conflict," the Fund's Kiev spokeswoman Anna Sukhodolska told AFP.
"The details of his visit and the programme are not being disclosed for safety reasons", she added.
Around 9,200 people have died since parts of Ukraine's mostly Russian-speaking eastern industrial heartland revolted two months after the ouster of Kiev's Moscow-backed president in February 2014.
A series of truce agreements have helped reduce the violence, although sporadic clashes persist.
The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe's chief monitor in Ukraine said in Vienna on Thursday that his group in recent weeks had registered a surge in ceasefire violations.

Friday, April 29th 2016

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