UWC President Eugene Czolij concludes visit to United Arab Emirates
On 2-4 March 2018. Ukrainian World Congress (UWC) President Eugene Czolij fulfilled an official visit to Abu Dhabi and Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE), where he addressed a Pre-conference Workshop on the topic of Working together for “Sustainability of Humanitarian Response” organized by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs prior to the 15th Annual Dubai International Humanitarian Aid & Development Conference & Exhibition (DIHAD), and also met with the Minister of State for Tolerance in the UAE, Director of Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection of the European Commission and the Ukrainian community.
On 2 March 2018 in Abu Dhabi, the UWC President met with Ambassador of Ukraine in the UAE Yuriy Polurez and discussed Ukraine-UAE relations and the situation of Ukrainians in the UAE.
In Dubai, the UWC President familiarized himself with the work of St. Mary Ukrainian Saturday School where he addressed the students and teaching staff headed by the principal, Natalia Serdyuk, and met with the students’ parents.
After this, a meeting was held at the Ukrainian Social Club in Dubai with members of the Executive of the Ukrainian Social Club of the UAE chaired by Olena Lukyanova. Eugene Czolij presented the main activities of the UWC, learned about Ukrainian community life in the UAE and called upon local Ukrainians for cooperation with the UWC.
On 3 March 2018 on the premises of the Embassy of Ukraine in Abu Dhabi, a meeting was held with leaders and activists of the Ukrainian community in Abu Dhabi and Dubai to whom Eugene Czolij presented the work of the UWC and discussed means of future cooperation.
The UWC President also had a meeting with the Minister of State for Tolerance in the UAE, Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, during which he extended greetings to the Minister with the Year of Sheik Zayed and congratulated the UAE authorities for the remarkable economic and infrastructure development of the country since 1971. During the meeting, Eugene Czolij presented the situation in Ukraine and called for its support, and also noted Ukraine’s significant progress in modernizing and reforming, and emphasized, that Ukraine is an appealing country for investment and export of high quality products. The UWC President also called upon the governing authorities of the UAE to provide the Ukrainian community with land to build a church and access to a facility in which they could organize cultural activities.
On this day in Dubai, the UWC President participated in a celebratory event on the occasion of the official opening of the Ukrainian Social Club in the UAE during which he extended greetings.
On 4 March 2018 in Dubai, the UWC President addressed a UN Pre-conference Workshop in conjunction with DIHAD that was dedicated to the development of cooperation on humanitarian aid issues between governments, the business sector and the diaspora. Eugene Czolij presented the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine caused by the ongoing hybrid aggression of the Russian Federation, outlined the contribution of the 20-million strong Ukrainian diaspora led by the UWC to the aid effort and called for international attention to the situation and tangible support for the victims.
The UWC President stressed to the Director for Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection, Directorate General of the European Commission, Jean Louis de Brauer, the urgent need for a substantial humanitarian assistance package for Ukraine to address the largest invisible humanitarian crisis since the Second World War.
Eugene Czolij also attended Divine Liturgy at St. Mary Catholic Church in Dubai where he met with Ukrainian clergy celebrating the liturgy – military chaplain, parish priest of Sts. Peter and Paul Garrison Church Fr. Stepan Sus and chaplain of the Centre for Student Chaplains of the Lviv Eparchy of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church Fr. Bohdan Kulyk.
Eugene Czolij also visited the Jumeirah Mosque in Dubai and met with Imam Mossan.
While in the UAE, the UWC President was accompanied by President of the Ukrainian Social Club in the UAE Olena Lukyanova and Director of the UWC Mission to International Organizations in Brussels Maryna Iaroshevych. Ambassador of Ukraine in the UAE Yuriy Polurez participated in the meeting with the Minister of State for Tolerance in the UAE and the community event at the Embassy.
“The trip to the United Arab Emirates was successful, offering an opportunity to present current issues related to the invisible humanitarian crisis in Ukraine during a thematic UN event and the needs of the Ukrainian community to local governing authorities, while strengthening ties with the Ukrainian community and launching the activities of the Ukrainian Social Club with its official opening”, stated UWC President Eugene Czolij.
In the photo: UWC President meeting with the Minister of State for Tolerance in the UAE. From left: Y. Polurez, E. Czolij and Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan