Ukrainians around the world join in marking the Day of Remembrance of the genocide of the Crimean Tatar people
18 May 2017 marks the 73rd anniversary of the deportation of Crimean Tatars from Crimea in 1944 on the order of Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin.
On this day, declared in 2015 as the Day of Remembrance of the victims of the genocide of the Crimean Tatar people by the Parliament of Ukraine, hundreds of thousands of Crimean Tatars were deported from the Crimean Peninsula of Ukraine to various regions of the Soviet Union with close to half perishing either during the journey or within a year of being exiled.
The Crimean Tatars returned to the peninsula in 1987, and in March 2014 once again faced persecution, and the curtailment of human rights and fundamental freedoms with the illegal occupation of the peninsula by the Russian Federation. The representative assembly, Crimean Tatar Mejlis, remains banned by the occupying Russian authorities having been branded as an extremist organization.
“The Ukrainian World Congress and Ukrainians around the world stand united with the Crimean Tatar people in remembrance of the victims of this genocide, and urges the international community to firmly maintain that Crimea is Ukraine,” stated UWC President Eugene Czolij.