It’s a rather unusual story. A 24-year-old man from the Ukraine married his 81-year-old cousin, but love might not have been the main reason they got married.
Alexander Kondratyuk legally married Zinaida Illarionovna. As well as being his cousin, she is also 57 years older than he is and there is also said to be a very specific reason they got married. He wanted to get out of doing military service.
In Ukraine, military service is compulsory for men between the ages of 18 and 26. However, there are exceptional circumstances in which someone can avoid having to fulfil their duty.
One of those circumstances is if the individual is married to a woman considered handicapped or disabled.
However, the young man denies that this is the reason they got married and ensures that he has developed strong feelings for his new wife. Zinaida also claims that he is an affectionate husband who takes good care of her.
However, the old woman’s neighbours don’t agree. According to them, their cousins, sisters and nephews visit her more than her husband does, and they have also revealed that she is still living alone.
The Ukrainian police have opened an investigation into the matter. However, it has proved difficult for experts to procure enough evidence since a marriage certificate exists.