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Stand With Ukraine global rally unfolds in over 700 cities, 69 countries

#UWC news
February 24,2024 2361
Stand With Ukraine global rally unfolds in over 700 cities, 69 countries

Today, on February 24, worldwide mass rallies are unfolding as part of the Ukrainian World Congress (UWC) StandWithUkraine global advocacy campaign. Marking the second anniversary of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine in a war that has spanned a decade, supporters in over 700 cities across 69 countries are rallying in solidarity with Ukraine. The UWC is providing live updates on these events.

USA

On the second anniversary of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, Paul Grod, President of the Ukrainian World Congress, joined the Philadelphia branch of the Ukrainian Congress Committee of America for a rally and a Prayer for Peace.

The Ukrainian community in Philadelphia rallied in the city’s central areas to highlight the ongoing harrowing war in Ukraine and to emphasize the importance of U.S. support for Ukraine’s Victory.

“Ukraine has stood up to the second-largest army in the world, and they had to give up some territory recently because they didn’t have enough munitions,” Paul Grod said in a commentary to The Philadelphia Inquirer.

“This isn’t about a piece of territory. It’s about lives … and people [being] tortured, raped, and executed by the Russian army in occupied Ukraine,” he said. “We want all governments of the free world to give Ukraine what it needs to be victorious. It needs munitions, sanctions against Russia, and [confiscation] of Russia’s assets all over the world,” emphasized Grod.

Numerous rallies in support of Ukraine took place in the USA. Thousands gathered in Washington, D.C., accompanied by UWC President Paul Grod. “Despite Russian propaganda’s claims of dwindling support for Ukraine, we see increased participation in these events compared to last year. It’s crucial to maintain and amplify this backing,” highlighted Mr. Grod in an interview with Yedyni Novyny” [“United News”] Ukrainian national telethon. 

The rally, which included Ukrainian defenders under medical treatment and rehabilitation in the U.S. and U.S. Senators, had speeches from prominent figures like Uzra Zeya, U.S. Under Secretary of State for Civilian Security, Democracy, and Human Rights, and Jose Fernandez, Under Secretary of State for Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment. 

Paul Grod, President of the Ukrainian World Congress, delivered a compelling speech at a Washington, D.C. rally, held at the iconic Lincoln Memorial – a symbol of American democracy.

In attendance were Scott Nathan, Chief Executive Officer of the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC), Erin McKee, Assistant Administrator in the Bureau for Europe and Eurasia (E&E) at USAID, Jovita Nelupšienė, EU Ambassador to the U.S., Congressman Jamie Raskin, Michael Sawkiw, Jr., the Executive Vice President of the Ukrainian Congress Committee of America (UCCA) and the Director of its Washington, D.C. bureau – the Ukrainian National Information Service (UNIS), and Andriy Futey, the Vice President of the Ukrainian World Congress and the President of the Ukraine Congress Committee of America (UCCA). 

Chicago also saw activists marching to the Cathedral to pay tribute to fallen Ukrainian warriors.

Czech Republic

20,000 people gathered in Prague’s Old Town Square to support Ukraine’s fight against Russia, the European Congress of Ukrainians reported. The President of the Czech Republic, Petr Pavel, joined the event. Those present hold the flags of Ukraine, the European Union and NATO.

“The participation of the President of the Czech Republic testifies to the Czech Government’s concern for Ukraine and immigrants. There are demands for support of the Armed Forces, use of Russian assets in Europe, work with sanctions,” the organizers wrote.

Canada

Significant rallies took place in Ottawa and Toronto, with calls for transferring frozen Russian assets to Ukraine. 

The Peace Tower at Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Canada, is blue and yellow.

Ukrainian Canadian Congress – UCC Calgary Branch held Stand With Ukraine Until Victory event at Municipal Plaza in Calgary.

Sweden

A rally took place in Gothenburg, the second largest city in Sweden.

Thousands of people assembled in Stockholm to show solidarity with Ukraine. Ukrainian flags were prominently displayed throughout the city streets.

India

In Delhi, an event was held to show solidarity with Ukraine, attracting numerous activists who urged global assistance in Ukraine’s fight for freedom.

Romania

The Union of Ukrainians in Romania coordinated over 20 events across various counties, demonstrating support for Ukraine.

Spain

A large rally in support of Ukraine took place in Madrid, with additional rallies occurring in Bilbao.

Despite inclement weather, the Ukrainian community and friends of Ukraine in Pamplona also rallied, as did the community in Murcia.

Lebanon

The Ukrainian community in Lebanon commemorated the anniversary of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine with a special event.

Malta

The Ukrainian flag was displayed in Malta, where the local fountain was illuminated in blue and yellow. Several dozen people participated in this initiative.

Indonesia

In Bali, Ukrainians organized an event to remember those innocent lives lost to Russian aggression.

Mauritius

Residents of Mauritius assembled to mark the second anniversary of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

UAE

In Abu Dhabi, the Ukrainian community conducted an educational event for youth.

Latvia

Strong grammar, send it off pro-Ukrainian statements and sentiment prevailed at a rally in Riga. “Russia is a terrorist country,” read the slogans.

Italy

Rome witnessed a large pro-Ukrainian march.

An event in support of Ukraine also took place in Modena.

Azerbaijan

Azerbaijan organized a “United Hearts” project to mark the anniversary of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. “This is a small number of stories that we want to share and thus thank those people who did not stay away from our trouble. There are many more of them. There are even so many that they give faith, envelop in hope and give love,” the organizers wrote. 

South Africa

The Ukrainian community in South Africa also held a rally in support of Ukraine.

Portugal

In Portugal, rallies were held in at least 11 cities in support of Ukraine. “First of all, the mass of participants and the wide geography of the cities where the rallies took place completely blocked the information narratives of the “Kremlin agents” who tried to convince Portuguese society a few days before that it was necessary to start negotiations with Putin. All Portuguese media outlets carried news about the Ukrainian rallies with clear demands for a Ukrainian victory as the only way to end the war. Secondly, most of the actions were attended by representatives of political parties who confirmed that they would help Ukraine until its just victory. We thank all those who care,” commented Pavlo Sadokha, UWC Vice President and President of the Union of Ukrainians in Portugal.

Brazil

A significant rally took place in Curitiba. Vitório Sorotiuk, President of the Ukrainian-Brazilian Central Representation and a UWC Board Member, addressed the attendees. “Russia is not a threat only to Ukraine. Its ideology, Russism, which is a cocktail of a cult of belief in Russian superiority, imperialism and disregard for democracy, is above all a direct threat to the entire European continent and a global threat, as demonstrated in numerous instances, including the threat of nuclear weapons. Russism is a threat to global democracy because of the lack of freedom to hold elections, organize, demonstrate, and press freedom in Russia. We need Brazil not to appeal to Moscow in solidarity and not to act as Putin’s lawyer against the decision of the International Criminal Court to arrest him,” emphasized Vitório Sorotiuk. 

In Buenos Aires, there were also numerous calls to bolster support for Ukraine.

Canary Islands

Support for Ukraine was palpable in the Canary Islands.

Mexico

The Ukrainian community and friends of Ukraine in Mexico rallied in Mexico City in solidarity with Ukraine.

 

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Argentina

Buenos Aires echoed with calls to bolster support for Ukraine.

Chile

Santiago hosted a significant pro-Ukrainian event, attended by Chilean foreign ministry officials, foreign diplomats, and members of academic, political, and business communities, along with the Ukrainian community in Chile.

Taiwan

A rally in Taipei featured the Ukrainian flag.

Bulgaria

Sofia hosted a large rally and march, including a 30-minute blockade of a central intersection, drawing attention to Russia’s war against Ukraine.

Finland

Helsinki saw hundreds rallying in support of Ukraine.

Greece

Athens heard calls for support for Ukraine.

Austria

In Vienna, participants commemorated those lost in Russia’s aggression against Ukraine.

Hungary

In Budapest, a pro-Ukrainian march is ongoing. The marchers are requesting the government’s backing for Ukraine in its conflict with Russia.

Belgium

In Brussels, near the European Parliament, a rally supporting Ukraine was held. Attendees displayed the Ukrainian flag and urged officials to equip Ukraine with the resources needed for victory.

Georgia

Tbilisi streets were adorned with Ukrainian symbols. In the evening, a large rally was held. “Today we gather to remember our heroes lost in the war. We seek global attention, to bring light once more to the ongoing situation in our country for two years,” said Tamara Vichkanova, a rally participant.

Germany

Berlin hosted a rally where thousands showed solidarity with Ukraine. Among the attendees was Lyudmyla Mlosh, the Head of the Central Union of Ukrainians in Germany (Zentralverband der Ukrainer in Deutschland, ZVUD).

Leipzig also organized a rally, drawing several hundred people to the city’s central square.

A rally in support of Ukraine took place in Stuttgart, with participants vocally denouncing Russia as a terrorist nation while marching through the city streets.

Lithuania

Support for Ukraine was also voiced in Vilnius. A poster at the event read, “EU, will we stop Russia or will we just cease to exist?”

The United Kingdom

London witnessed support for Ukraine as well.

At the Ukrainian Catholic Cathedral in London, activists organized a poignant event to honor the memory of the 528 Ukrainian children who lost their lives due to the brutal Russian war on Ukraine. They hung paper angels inside the church as a symbol of remembrance.

Glasgow saw another pro-Ukrainian rally.

Antarctica 

Ukrainian Antarctic researchers participated in the UWC’s StandWithUkraine global initiative, aimed at keeping worldwide attention on Russia’s ongoing war with Ukraine. To commemorate the second anniversary of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, the 28th Ukrainian Antarctic Expedition team created a video.

Montenegro

In spite of unfavorable weather conditions, a significant rally took place in Cetinje.

Türkiye 

The Ukrainian community in Istanbul is also mobilizing, with several hundred individuals urging the Turkish government and international community to assist Ukraine in its war against Russia.

Japan

In Tokyo, a crowded rally was held in the city center to show solidarity with Ukraine. The attendees highlighted the global threat of Russian aggression. Additionally, they presented a symbolic check to Russia, underscoring the demand for reparations for their actions in Ukraine.

Poland

Early in the morning on February 24, at 6:00 am, a group of activists triggered an air raid siren close to the Russian Embassy in Warsaw. This event was orchestrated by Euromaidan Warsaw and the Association of Ukrainians in Poland, with approximately 40 individuals participating.

Serbia

People also came out to support Ukraine in Belgrade. Several hundred people joined the event. 

The Netherlands

A rally to support Ukraine was also held in Amsterdam. 

Denmark

The rallying message of the Copenhagen action in support of Ukraine was clear: “Make Russia pay.”

Italy

Ukrainians in Italy are actively participating as well. In Milan, a rally was organized as part of the Ukrainian World Congress’s StandWithUkraine global advocacy campaign.

Latvia

The streets of Riga are adorned in blue and yellow, and numerous rallies in support of Ukraine are taking place throughout the city.

New Zealand

The initial activities kicked off in Auckland, New Zealand’s biggest city, with a rally drawing 200 people. Among the attendees were a local Parliament member and the Honorary Consul of Ukraine, Poland, and Panama. Nataliya Poshyvaylo-Towler, UWC Vice President for Oceania and Asia, spoke to the assembled crowd.

Our spirit is strong, even though we are bleeding, grieving for our lost soldiers, defenders, mothers and families, prisoners of war and children forcefully taken to Russia and separated from their parents. Our pain is unspeakable for our lost and ruined cities. But we are at the forefront of standing for democracy, peace and justice for Ukraine and the all-democratic world,emphasized Poshyvaylo-Towler.

The Ukrainian community also gathered in Dunedin. Despite the unfavorable weather and the forced cancellation of part of the event, people took to the streets to express their support for Ukraine, singing songs in Māori for Ukraine and Ukrainians and raising funds for Ukraine. Among those present were two members of parliament.

“Before, no one here knew about Ukraine. Now they know, they can tell the accent, and they are very happy that they have “their own Ukrainians” in this part of the world. Almost everyone knows about Ukraine now,” the organizers of the Vigil for Ukraine campaign wrote.

Australia

Rallies in Melbourne and Sydney saw hundreds of Australians standing in solidarity with Ukraine. In Melbourne, Stefan Romaniw, Co-Chair of the Australian Federation of Ukrainian Organisations (AFUO) and UWC Vice President, spoke to the crowd, urging the Australian government to arm Ukraine. A poignant moment was marked by a hundred white roses commemorating the Heroes of the Heavenly Hundred and all fallen war heroes.

Similarly, in Sydney, the rally drew a large crowd. Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and other officials delivered video messages to the attendees. Participants displayed the Ukrainian flags and appealed to the global community to support Ukraine in dire times of need.

Thailand

In Bangkok, a solidarity march for Ukraine was held, drawing fifty participants. This diverse group, consisting of Ukrainians, Thais, and other international supporters, walked through the city streets to mark the second anniversary of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

Uganda

The European Union Mission to Uganda expressed support for Ukraine. “24 Feb 2022 will forever be recalled as the day when Russia started its brutal, unprovoked & illegal invasion of Ukraine. The European Union & Member States continue to #StandWithUkraine at home & abroad, including in Uganda. Today our Heads of Mission affirm this commitment.”

France

The iconic Eiffel Tower is shining brightly in blue and yellow colors. Meanwhile, Ukrainian communities in numerous cities throughout France are gathering today to demonstrate their support.

By 4 p.m. in Kyiv, a crowd of 10,000 had assembled in Paris to show their support for Ukraine at a rally.

There were also rallies in Rouen and Grenoble.

South Korea

Ukrainians in South Korea have taken to the streets, urging the international community to intervene and halt Russia’s criminal invasion of Ukraine.