Penn has been in Ukraine before the start of the war and says that he has thought about fighting on behalf of the country after the Russian Invasion.
“The director specially came to Kyiv to record all the events that are currently happening in Ukraine and to tell the world the truth about Russia’s invasion of our country,” the presidential office said in a translated statement on its Facebook page.
Once Russian forces began to attack Ukraine, Penn found himself among thousands of refugees fleeing to Poland on foot.
Myself & two colleagues walked miles to the Polish border after abandoning our car on the side of the road. Almost all the cars in this photo carry women & children only, most without any sign of luggage, and a car their only possession of value. pic.twitter.com/XSwCDgYVSH
— Sean Penn (@SeanPenn) February 28, 2022
Penn said that if he had remained behind he likely would have joined the war effort. He says he hopes to return at some point.
“My intention is to go back into Ukraine,” he said. “But I’m not an idiot, I am not certain what I can offer. I don’t spend a lot of time texting the president or his staff while they’re under siege and their people are being murdered.”