An Australian couple risked their lives and flew to Ukraine to get their surrogate baby girl safely evacuated from the war-ravaged country. The parents and the girl were eventually evacuated safely to Moldova on Monday with the help of Australian officials.

The couple, Jessica Van Nooten and Kevin Middleton, had flown to war-torn Ukraine last month despite the Australian government warning against doing so.

The baby named Alba was born in Odessa two days before Russia invaded Ukraine in February. She was put in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) as she was born prematurely and needed medical care.

The couple and the baby were unable to leave Ukraine due to the girl's fragile condition. "The decision to move Alba happened quickly as her condition stabilised enough for her to be transported," the couple wrote on Instagram after evacuation.

"The evacuation was a tense moment, but it was a success thanks to the many people who have been working tirelessly to bring Alba to safety," they said.

The baby, however, is still in NICU and is being looked after at a hospital in Moldova. The three of them are yet to return to Australia as the couple is waiting for the baby's condition to stabilise.

"We have been told Alba's condition is stable but has not been ready for transportation. Alba still has a recovery journey ahead of her, so please continue your thoughts and prayers for the baby girl," read the post further.

The couple had chosen to go for surrogacy after they failed to conceive through IVF over a span of seven years which included 15 failed rounds of the procedure. A fundraiser has helped the family raise almost $71,000 to sponsor their travel and medical supplies.

In the last few years, Ukraine has become a popular destination for surrogacy. More than 10 Australian families are expecting babies via surrogacy to be delivered by the first week of May, according to a report in The Sydney Morning Herald.

The country has become one of the go-to destinations for couples who cannot conceive through other methods because it is affordable.

The other reason is the Ukrainian laws, the country recognises intended parents as legal parents of a child born through surrogacy. However, only heterosexual couples are legally allowed to go for surrogacy.

With the Russia-Ukraine conflict showing no signs of reaching a peace settlement anytime soon, the fate of hundreds of such couples now hangs in a balance.

ukraine children
A woman holds her baby as they are evacuated by bus from the town of Makeyevka. AFP