Оn August 24-th Ukraine marks its independence for the 25-th time. On that date in 1991 Ukraine proclaimed its independence. The act of proclamation of independence of Ukraine was approved on December 1, 1991 through the national vote.
on December 1, 1991 through the national vote.
Many expected Ukraine to be short-lived. And many others expected it to follow in the footsteps of its post-Soviet neighbors and abandon democracy. Instead, 25 years after independence, Ukraine survives as a democratic state.
Its survival and consolidation as a democracy can be largely attributed to the fact that, from 1991 to 2014, Ukraine had the good fortune to exist in relatively stable geopolitical circumstances. Russia, the only existential threat to Ukraine, was in disarray and until 2014, while far from being a good neighbor, had resisted direct intervention. Ukrainians—or, more precisely, Ukrainian civil society—consistently challenged government corruption and incompetence and promoted accountability, democracy, tolerance, and transparency.
Till 2014 we hoped to develop Ukraine in prosperity and peace with every country. But our neighbor, who had been claiming for years to be a “brother”, two years and a half ago had stabbed us in the back at first by occupying the Crimea. A few weeks later, Kremlin unleashed a hybrid war in the eastern part of Ukraine.
Hundreds of Ukrainian patriots have already sacrificed their lives fighting against pro-Russian terrorists and Russian troops in order to defend Ukraine, as well as peace and stability in Europe. Many hundreds of innocent civilians became victims of terrorists and Kremlin’s neo-imperialistic plans.
We are fighting for universal values — freedom, democracy, and territorial integrity. We are also fighting for the global peace.
Twenty five years ago, the people of Ukraine decided to escape the Soviet empire. Nothing will make us go back—neither military intimidation, nor economic coercion.
The future is being made now. The world should decide what it will sow today in order to reap it tomorrow. Russia should do the same. War never brings prosperity; only peace and mutual support do.
Under these difficult conditions for Ukraine celebrating Independence Day takes on a new meaning. Fierce fighting for the preservation of the integrity of our country continues and we all need to unite and do everything possible to preserve the sovereignty and independence of our state.