Polish Ambassador in Kyiv Bartosz Cichocki and his Israeli counterpart Joel Lion have said that honoring people who “actively propagated ethnic cleansings” is insulting and are expecting the Kyiv City State Administration (KCSA) and the Lviv Regional Council to join “efforts to seek the truth” in this issue. “We are seriously concerned and saddened that representatives of Ukrainian authorities of various levels, including the Lviv Regional Council and the KCSA, still mark historical events and honor persons who must be condemned once and for all,” the ambassadors said in a joint statement.
They thus are alarmed by the fact on December 24, the Lviv Regional Council issued a resolution, which implies the allocation of public funds in 2020 to honor the memory of one of the leaders of the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN, which is banned in Russia) Andriy Melnyk, as well as writer and statesman Ivan Lypa and his son and public figure Yuriy Lypa.
“In addition, on January 1, the Kyiv City State Administration (KCSA) placed a banner with a portrait of Stepan Bandera on its building. Remembering our innocent brothers and sisters killed in 1939-1945 on the occupied Polish territories, which are currently part of Ukraine, we, the ambassadors of Poland and Israel, believe that honoring people, who have actively propagated ethnic purges, is an insult, and leads to the opposite result in the fight against anti-Semitism and in the reconciliation process between our peoples,” the statement reads.
In this connection, the ambassadors are expecting the Lviv Regional Council and the KCSA to join the dialogue seeking the truth.
“On our part, we stand ready to promote better cooperation between various institutions in Israel and Poland, including with Yad Vashem and with the Institute of National Remembrance,” the statement said.
As reported, a procession with torches marking Bandera’s 111th birth anniversary took place in downtown Kyiv in the evening on January 1.
According to media reports, about 1,500 attended the event.
About 2,000 attended the torch march that marked Bandera’s birth anniversary in 2019.
President of Ukraine accepted credentials from ambassadors of a number of foreign states: the Republic of Korea – Chang-Kwon Chi, the South African Republic – Andre Johannes Groenewald, the Republic of Slovenia – Tomaz Menzin, the Federal Republic of Germany – Anka Feldhusen, the Republic of Finland – Päivi Maarit Laine. During the conversation with Ambassador of the Republic of Korea to Ukraine Chang-Kwon Chi, the parties discussed issues of strengthening political dialogue at the highest level between Ukraine and South Korea as well as prospects of trade, economic and investment cooperation, the presidential press service said on Wednesday.
“The issue of introducing a visa-free regime for Ukrainian citizens was discussed, which would facilitate the development of interpersonal contacts,” it says.
The president invited President of the Republic of Korea Mun Zhe Ying to visit Ukraine.
During the conversation with new Ambassador of the South African Republic to Ukraine Andre Johannes Groenewald, the president of Ukraine emphasized the importance of strengthening political dialogue.
According to Zelensky, Ukraine considers the South African Republic as a prospective partner in Africa and is focused on more intensive cooperation in all spheres.
“Special attention was paid to the discussion of trade and economic cooperation, in particular prospects of Ukrainian-South African business forum which would be held this year,” the message reads.
President of Ukraine spoke out about the establishment of closer and constructive bilateral cooperation between Ukraine and the Republic of South Africa within the framework of its non-permanent membership in the United Nations Security Council.
The president of Ukraine also invited President of the Republic of South Africa Matamela Cyril Ramaphosa to visit Ukraine in the framework of the official visit.
The president thanked Ambassador of the Republic of Finland to Ukraine Päivi Maarit Laine for consistent support of the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine, as well as the substantial humanitarian and expert assistance provided by Helsinki to Ukraine at the bilateral level. Particular attention was paid to the practical assistance provided by Finland in implementing systemic reforms, in particular in the field of school education and energy efficiency.
During the conversation with Ambassador of the Republic of Slovenia to Ukraine Tomaz Menzin the president of Ukraine thanked Slove nia for the consistent political support of the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine. Zelensky appreciated the assistance of Slovenia in promoting the rehabilitation of 400 children from Ukraine whose parents had died as a result of Russian aggression.
During the conversation with Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany Anka Feldhusen the head of state thanked the German side for the continued support of Ukraine in countering Russian aggression, as well as substantial financial and technical assistance to facilitate the process of structural reforms in Ukraine.
“During the meeting, the main focus was on discussing the security situation in Donbas and a set of further steps to revitalize the peace process. The importance of continuing international pressure on the Russian Federation to ensure its implementation of the decision of the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea was emphasized,” the presidential website says.
President of Ukraine also expressed hopes for the preservation of the traditionally active political dialogue at the highest level in the future.
In addition, the parties discussed the issue of involving German business representatives to work in Ukraine and the creation of joint enterprises.
President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky, by his decrees, has dismissed Ukrainian ambassadors in 11 countries. Presidential decrees dismiss Valeriy Chaly from the post of Ukrainian ambassador to the U.S., to Antigua and Barbuda and Trinidad and Tobago (part-time), Ambassador of Ukraine to Armenia Petro Lytvyn, and Ambassador to Turkmenistan Valentyn Shevaliov, the official website of the president reported.
Ambassador of Ukraine to the Republic of Cyprus Borys Humeniuk, ambassador to Argentina and part-time to Paraguay, Uruguay and Chile, Yuriy Dudin, were dismissed.
Ambassador to Vietnam and part-time to Cambodia, Oleksiy Shovkoplias, ambassador to Morocco Yaroslav Koval, and ambassador to Jordan Serhiy Pasko, were also dismissed.
Zelensky fired ambassador of Ukraine to Nigeria and part-time to Ghana, Benin and Sierra Leone, Valeriy Aleksandruk, and ambassador to South Africa Taras Kuzmych.
In addition, Ambassador of Ukraine to Vatican and part-time to the Sovereign Military Hospitaller Order of Saint John of Jerusalem, of Rhodes and of Malta, Tetiana Izhevska, was also dismissed.
NGO “Odesa Natives Together” invites foreign ambassadors, in particular those from the G7 countries, to Odesa in the hope of attracting more foreign tourists to the city in future. “We plan that foreign tourists, whom, unfortunately, there are not so many in Odesa, [will come] … I would like people from Europe, Canada, the United States to come here,” Head of NGO “Odesa Natives Together” Illia Luponosov said at a press conference at Interfax-Ukraine.
“A good and fast way to help the city is to attract tourists, show our city, invite people,” he added.
According to the head of the organization, activists, actors, the “living statues” of Potemkin and Duke de Richelieu with theatrical performances on March 30 visit the embassies of foreign countries in Kyiv and invite ambassadors to visit Odesa.
Luponosov noted that representatives of the public organization also state “they guarantee security and good rest” in the city.
He added that invitations will be given in the diplomatic missions of the G7 countries (Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States), as well as Bulgaria and Belgium.