Watch: Ukraine's female soldiers made to march in heels
What was supposed to be a unique parade has left the Ukrainian authorities in the middle of a sexist controversy ahead of its 30 years of independence celebrations.
Female Ukrainian troops are preparing to stage a military parade next month to celebrate 30 years of independence and to show the preparations the defence ministry released images of these women soldiers marching in black heels.
"Today, for the first time, training takes place in heeled shoes," cadet Ivanna Medvid was quoted as saying by the defence ministry's information site ArmiaInform. "It is slightly harder than in army boots but we are trying."
However, this post backfired at the authorities as many believe the female troops have been sexualised with this choice of footwear. The defence ministry is being accused of sexism and misogyny.
Not just the social media users, but members of parliament, too, ridiculed the idea and blamed the defence ministry for ignoring the health risks the women are being exposed to by being made to march in heels.
"It is hard to imagine a more idiotic, harmful idea," said Inna Sovsun, a member of the Golos party, pointing to health risks.
People also said that the ministry is mocking the service done by women troops, even though they put in equal efforts and induce similar risks as male soldiers.