May 9, 2023 – Brussels, Belgium. The Ukrainian World Congress (UWC) and Ukrainians worldwide join the EU nations in marking Europe Day – a celebration of peace and unity in Europe. We also extend our special congratulations to the people of Ukraine, who today officially celebrate Europe Day together with the EU for the first time ever.
President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s decision to establish Europe Day in Ukraine instead of the fake Soviet-Russian “Victory Day” is one more step towards historical justice and a symbolic act that binds Ukraine with the Euro-Atlantic family of nations. At the same time, this is another step to debunk and repel the ugly Russian propaganda and disinformation that the Kremlin tries to promote on May 8 and May 9 memorial days.
Today, Ukraine is at the forefront of defending the fundamental European values that have shaped United Europe since the end of the Second World War. We reiterate the words of Ms. Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Council, who said, “The Kremlin’s invasion reminds us why we are celebrating Europe Day. The day when our peaceful, prosperous, and united Europe was born. More than ever before, Europeans feel that they belong to one European family,” and the words of Mr. Josep Borrell, EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy – “Ukrainians are not just defending their country, they are also defending our common values and the basic principles of international law.”
Since dictator Putin’s rise to power in Russia, the Free World has faced a new threat. The Putin regime has turned Russian culture and history into a weapon. Russian state propaganda, disinformation, and deliberate distortion of objective facts are integral to the Russian Federation’s hybrid warfare arsenal in its war against Ukraine, the EU, and the entire democratic world. By distorting historical facts, Russia and its criminal leadership use the memory of the victory over Nazism in World War II to promote militarism, to justify its genocidal war of aggression against Ukraine and its pursuit of aggressive policies against the world’s democracies.
From the first days of the Russian military aggression against Ukraine, the UWC and Ukrainian communities have consistently countered and called out Russian propaganda and false historical narratives. Through our advocacy campaigns and public campaigns, such as #RussianShameDay, we have made many efforts to educate the general public, elected officials, and opinion leaders throughout the countries of the Free World about the threats coming from Russian criminal disinformation.
After failing to destroy Ukraine and Ukrainians on the battlefield, Russia is now seeking to “freeze” the “conflict.” It resorts to various manipulations to persuade Ukraine to negotiate, convince Ukraine’s allies to exert “pressure” on Kyiv, and force Ukraine to sign a truce. However, as long as even a single Ukrainian or any part of Ukraine remains under Russian occupation, the suffering and the genocide of our people will continue.
Ukrainians won’t stop until the war ends with the complete restoration of the order of justice and the Ukrainian people’s complete liberation from the brutal oppression of Russian occupiers.
United, we will prevail!