Shulgoing British ambassador to Ukraine to return to Kyiv

Melinda Simmons is a member of Finchley Reform


The British ambassador to Kyiv Melinda Simmons has announced she's set to return to the Ukrainian capital after coming back to the UK for her safety last month.

Simmons, a member of Finchley Reform, left the country last month after relocating from Kyiv to Lviv in the West of Ukraine.

In a tweet, Simmons confirmed her return to her post, saying that she was "looking forward" to being back in Kyiv.

Just before war broke out in Ukraine, Finchley’s Rabbi Miriam Berger told the JC: “Melinda’s Jewish values permeate her existence every day. There has always been a prophetic calling in the way she strives for justice for all.”

Rabbi Berger also said that Ms Simmons sometimes attends Friday night services in Finchley via Zoom. “Shabbat evening services are definitely a space for her to take stock and decompress after particularly harrowing weeks at work.

“She always asks people, ‘How was your week?’ Yet a good or bad week for her could be the difference between war and peace.”

Born in London’s East End and brought up in Ilford, Ms Simmons read French and German at Exeter University. She spent a year sponsored by the Foreign Office learning the Ukrainian language before taking up her current posting in 2019.

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