Sean Penn lauds President Zelensky for his ‘courage and dignity’ amid Russian invasion

‘I was endlessly impressed and moved by him and terrified for him and for Ukraine,’ said actor

Inga Parkel
Monday 07 March 2022 15:13 GMT
Sean Penn praises Hugo Chavez

Sean Penn has lauded Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky for his “courage and dignity” amid Russia’s attack.

The 61-year-old, who has been filming a VICE documentary about Russia’s invasion of the country, met with Zelensky on Thursday (24 February), the same day that Russian tanks crossed the Crimea border into Ukraine.

In his first interview since leaving the war zone, Penn opened up to CNN’s news anchor Anderson Cooper about his meeting with Zelensky.

“I don’t know if [Zelensky] knew that he was born for this, but it was clear I was in the presence of something – again it was reflective of so many Ukrainians – that was new to the modern world in terms of courage and dignity and love that comes out of that man,” said Penn.

In addition to praising Zelensky and the “way he has unified” the Ukrainian people, Penn added: “I was endlessly impressed and moved by him and terrified for him and for Ukraine.”

He recounted the scenes of the ongoing war as “heartbreaking” and mentioned the “ripple effects” this could have on the entire world.

While Penn admitted not to have the answers for how to put a stop to the war, he called on US President Joe Biden to help Ukraine.

(Getty Images)

The I Am Sam star urged the US to “invest everything” into supporting the country and its people, or lose sight of “what America hoped to be”.

The Independent has a proud history of campaigning for the rights of the most vulnerable, and we first ran our Refugees Welcome campaign during the war in Syria in 2015. Now, as we renew our campaign and launch this petition in the wake of the unfolding Ukrainian crisis, we are calling on the government to go further and faster to ensure help is delivered. To find out more about our Refugees Welcome campaign, click here. To sign the petition click here. If you would like to donate then please click here for our GoFundMe page.

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in