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UWC CONCLUDES IMPACTFUL MISSION TO UKRAINE

#UWC news
December 23,2022 780
UWC CONCLUDES IMPACTFUL MISSION TO UKRAINE

Ukrainian World Congress (UWC) President Paul Grod, First Vice-President Stefan Romaniw, and Director UniteWithUkraine Andriy Potichnyj visited Kyiv and Lviv Ukraine December 12-15, 2022.

They delivered critical equipment, including generators, drones, communication equipment, stoves, winter gear, and tactical medical kits to Ukraine’s Armed Forces, including the Territorial Defense Forces (TDF). This delivery of military equipment is part of UWC’s #UniteWithUkraine campaign. Since the start of Russia’s full-scale invasion and war on Ukraine, UWC has been raising funds and purchase and transfer equipment and medical support for Ukrainian defenders.

The UWC team, is closely coordinating with all the key defense organizations within the Ministry of Defence and Ministry of Interior to identify and deliver the most impactful support to those brave defenders on the front lines and outposts of Ukraine.

The 21,000 pairs of winter shoes and 2,000 field stoves  delivered the TDF on December 13, 2022 has already been delivered to the Ukraine’s defenders on the front lines. This equipment is also vetted by UWC’s Strategic Advisory Council, chaired by Canada’s former Chief of Defense Staff, General (ret.) Rick Hillier.

UWC President held several strategic meetings with top military leaders of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. The meeting with the Commander of the Ukrainian Territorial Defense Forces, Major General Ihor Tantsyura, focused on the efficacy of the TDF and how they have been fully incorporated into the frontline forces that have successfully repelled and bet-back the Russia marauding army. Gen. Tantsyura expressed his gratitude for the campaign of the Ukrainian World Congress #UniteWithUkraine, which collects donations and procures necessary equipment for the Ukrainian fighters. Major General awarded Paul Grod with the honorary  “Territorial Defense Shield” designation award from the Armed Forces of Ukraine for assistance to the TDF.

Ukraine’s Chief of Defense Staff General Zaluzhny who was supposed to be meet with the UWC delegation, bestowed on General Tantsyura the authority to represent him in thanking UWC and its donors for their meaningful contribution to the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

The UWC delegation also held a meeting with the Chief of Defence Intelligence of Ukraine, Major General Kyrylo Budanov.

The parties agreed to collaborate and coordinate joint countermeasures to Russian disinformation. The UWC agreed to engage its Strategic Advisory Council to encourage international defense agencies and allied governments to collect and share intelligence information, explore information exchange options, and enlist cooperation programs between Ukrainian special services and similar structures worldwide.

During their meeting with Deputy Defense Minister, Hanna Malyar, the UWC delegation discussed deeper cooperation between the UWC and the Ministry of Defense in countering Russian disinformation and presenting an objective image of Ukraine and its heroic struggle against the Russian invaders on the international stage.  The parties agreed to prepare a memorandum of cooperation to support, among other things, the Military Media Center of Ukraine.

In Lviv, the delegation met with Lt. Gen. Pavlo Tkachuk,Chief of Ukraine’s National Army Military Academy to discuss ways to continue UWC’s support for enhanced training to Ukraine’s Armed Forces.  Gen. Tkachuk, bestowed the Order of Hetman Petro Sahaydachny upon both UWC President Grod and Director Potichnyj for their unwavering support and impactful contribution to strengthening Ukraine’s defense capabilities.

ADVOCACY EFFORTS 

Foreign Affairs. On the diplomatic front, the UWC delegation of President Grod, 1st VP Romaniw and Ukraine Mission Director Kasyanchuk met with Ukraine’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Dmytro Kuleba and Ambassador Inna Ohinvets, the newly appointed Director of Cooperation with Ukrainian Communities Abroad. Minister Kuleba outlined the current diplomatic priorities of Ukraine.

These included,  the most pressing military support for Ukraineand Ukraine’s cooperation with African, Asian, and Latin American countries.  Minister Kuleba called upon UWC to focus their efforts on ensuring the recognition of the Holodomor as genocide worldwide.  He emphasized the need to ensure that any official recognition designated the Holodomor as a genocide.  It is critically important to use the precise terminology of genocide so as not to diminish the Holodmor’s historical significance, especially in the context of Russia’s present-day genocide being perpetrated against the Ukrainian people.

Human Rights. As the topic of Human Rights is a key priority, the UWC delegation met with Ukraine’s Commissioner for Human Rights, Dmytro Lubinets. Mr. Lubinets outlined the horrific human rights abuses being committed by Russian forces in Ukraine. Particularly disturbing was the pervasive sexual abuse and torture of children, where children’s torture chambers are found in the de-occupied territories.

The UWC team outlined the human rights violations they identified against Ukrainian refugees. The UWC and the Commissioner agreed to establish a local working group that would regularly exchange information, promote the Commissioner’s reports abroad, and support one another’s activities in the area of human rights.

Critical Infrastructure. UWC President met with Mr. Volodymyr Kudrytskyi Chairman and Oleh Pavlenko, Special Advisor to UkrEnergo, the state-owned transmission company that has experienced the brunt of the Russian missile attacks aimed at destroying Ukraine’s power grid. They discussed the urgent assistance needed in helping to restore Ukraine’s energy infrastructure, which has been decimated by Russia’s ruthless missile attacks.  The extent of the destruction and the challenges facing the Ukrainian people today are enormous.  The need to restore the power grid is extremely urgent.

UWC outlined its initiative EnergizeUkraine.com that will work closely with UkrEnergo and the Ministry of Energy to identify, procure and deliver critical equipment needed to restore Ukraine’s destroyed power grid.

Religious Organizations. The Head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church Sviatoslav Shevchuk and Primate of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine Epiphany welcomed the delegation of the Ukrainian World Congress, led by the President Paul Grod. The delegation also included the UWC First Vice President and International Religious Affairs Committee Chair, Stefan Romaniw, and the UWC Ukraine Mission Director, Serhiy Kasyanchuk.

The UWC representatives and the leaders of Ukrainian churches discussed the challenges for the Ukrainian people related to the full-scale war against the Russian invaders, the attraction of total international aid to Ukraine, support for Ukrainian refugees abroad, the religious and interfaith situation in Ukraine, and other issues.

Conclusion

During this brief yet intensely productive visit to Ukraine, the UWC delegation were able to assess many of the most critical areas of UWC’s support for Ukraine in 2023. These included:

  • enhanced equipment support for Ukraine’s armed forces through the UniteWithUkraine platform
  • advocacy for maximum military support, especially air defense and anti-missile defense, equipment, precision missiles, and artillery
  • Countering the “Russian world” narrative and efforts to assimilate Ukrainians into the Russian propaganda narrative.
  • protection of human rights, and
  • assistance in the restoration of energy infrastructure.

UWC IN THE UKRAINIAN MEDIA

Leading Ukrainian TV channels, Ukrainian radio and online media, television News Service (TSN), Espresso TV, UkrInformUkrainian ViewUkraina MolodaArmy INFORM covered the visit of the UWC delegation.

The UWC delegation visit also was found in the information resources of Ukrainian government institutions, such as the Verkhovna Rada Commissioner for Human Rights website, the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense website, and the portal of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine.

The UWC President gave a prime-time interview to the top Ukrainian channel 1+1 as part of a telethon that has been ongoing since the beginning of the full-scale Russian invasion. The conversation in the studio focused on issues of assistance to Ukraine from worldwide Ukrainians – both in connection with Russian aggression and in the post-war reconstruction of Ukraine, advocacy for its accession to the EU, etc. Watch the full interview here.