Pavlo Sadokha on Russia’s influence on Ukraine’s refugees

#UWC news
January 10,2024 568
Pavlo Sadokha on Russia’s influence on Ukraine’s refugees

In an interview with Suspilne Sprotyv (“Resistance”), Pavlo Sadokha, UWC Vice-President and President of the Union of Ukrainians in Portugal, emphasized that Russian propaganda purposefully influences Ukrainian forced migrants abroad.

“Russkiy mir” [literally “Russian world,” the idea that Russian culture completely dominates all other civilizations] has long been preparing for what would happen when they start attacking [Ukraine] – a large migration [of Ukrainians] to European countries. From the first days, projects of the Russkiy Mir began to operate – created by the Russkiy Mir Foundation or Rossotrudnichestvo (Federal Agency for the Commonwealth of Independent States Affairs, Compatriots Living Abroad, and International Humanitarian Cooperation), and most notably, by the Russian Orthodox Church, which even established Saturday schools for children to work with Ukrainian youth immediately,” says Sadokha.

The Ukrainian community in Portugal resists these continuous manifestations of Russian propaganda – alerting local authorities and the Ministry of Education in Portugal, sending appeals and letters demanding the cessation of the occupant’s activities.

“In Portugal now, fortunately, the Russkiy Mir Foundation has already ceased its activities, but it continues to operate in other countries. It is crucial for both us and Ukraine to pay attention to the fact that these centers of Russian propaganda essentially just draw our people to them, especially those who live in Russian-speaking environments, religious environments controlled by Moscow. It is necessary to work with these people actively,” says the UWC Vice President.

The task of global Ukrainian civic organizations is to bring Ukraine’s refugees back into the Ukrainian environment, remind them of their Ukrainian identity, and support them in returning to Ukraine or contributing to creating Ukrainian communities abroad, Sadokha concluded.

Cover: Shutterstock

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