“Sunday, bloody sunday”… While the governor of Lugansk announced that sixty people had probably died in the bombing of a school and that the fights for control of the Azovstal factory in Mariupol are still raging, the words of U2 just strike this Sunday. The mythical piece, a tribute to the conflict in Northern Ireland, resounded in the corridors of the kyiv metro, during a surprise concert by U2 singer Bono.

From the platform of a station in the capital, the 61-year-old rock icon also sang other U2 classics, such as “Desire” and “With or without you”. Bono also invited a Ukrainian soldier to sing with him and called on the world to support the country at war by covering “Stand by me”.

prayer for peace

“People in Ukraine are not just fighting for your own freedom, you are fighting for all of us who love freedom,” Bono said during a break. The singer also referenced past conflicts in the band’s native Ireland and the troubles she experienced with a more powerful neighbour. “We pray that you can soon enjoy some of that peace,” Bono said.

The surprise appearance of Bono, a longtime humanitarian activist who frequently lends his voice to various causes including the fight against poverty and AIDS, came as air raid sirens sounded in the Ukrainian capital and fighting raged in the east of the country. Bono performed alongside U2 guitarist ‘The Edge’ in front of a small crowd of fans, including members of the Ukrainian Armed Forces.

“It’s good emotions, that’s all,” said a member of the Ukrainian Territorial Forces in the audience. “It’s a strange feeling, like I’m a kid going to first grade,” Olesia Bezsmertna, 36, a college professor, said before the concert.

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