Russian-American AEW star Leyla Hirsch took to Twitter tonight to issue a statement on the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine, which entered into its third week today.

Hirsch, who turned heel earlier this year, was born in Moscow, Russia, and wears the colors of the Russian flag on her ring gear. She was adopted by an American couple at the age of 8, brought to New Jersey to live, and has been in the United States since then. She noted in tonight’s statement that she stands with Ukraine, and does not support Vladimir Putin.

Hirsch’s statement comes in response to apparent criticism from fans on social media. Her full statement reads like this:

“I want to make something very clear. I stand with Ukraine one hundred percent and my heart breaks for its citizens who are suffering at the hands of Vladimir Putin. I was born in Russia. I came to the US at eight years of age and became an American citizen. I cannot change my heritage any more than any other citizen can change theirs. The mere fact that I was born in Russia does not mean that I support this brutal dictator. Everyone who would even suggest such a thing is simply wrong, plain and simple.”

This looks to be Hirsch’s first public comments on the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

Hirsch defeated Kris Statlander on the AEW Revolution Kickoff pre-show this past Sunday, but then lost to Thunder Rosa in a #1 contender’s match on last night’s AEW Dynamite. She has been wrestling since 2017, and was trained by WWE’s Joe Gacy. Hirsch first started working with AEW in October 2020, and signed a contract on March 15 of last year.

Stay tuned for more. You can see Hirsch’s full tweet below:

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