Ukraine: Remembering the Great Famine

It’s the 76th anniversary of the Great Famine in the former Ukrainian People’s Republic.

Hundreds gather in Kyiv for the “Light a Candle” campaign held near 30-meter candles in the memorial complex dedicated to the Great Famine of 1932-1933.

Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko and his wife, along with Ukrainian Parliamentarians gathered to remember the victims.

President Yushchenko reiterated that the Great Famine was genocide of the Ukrainian people.

He also spoke about investigating the causes of the Famine in Ukraine.

[Viktor Yushchenko, Ukrainian President]:
“We know the names of the victims and the names of the killers. We disclosed specific orders of the Communist regime, orders and telegrams about the killing. They exist. Fortunately, the archives did not burn.”

According to Security Service of Ukraine (SSU) archives, the 1932-33 famine was artificially created by leaders of the Ukrainian SSR and the USSR.

This caused a massive loss of people in Ukraine and southern Russia.

Various estimates indicated there were anywhere from three to seven million victims. Every family, every home lost someone.

“Thirty-three thousand candles were lit today near the monument for the victims of the great famine in Ukraine – in hope that this tragedy will never happen again.”

Candles symbolizing the souls of those who died from hunger were lit not only by witnesses of those days. Many young people are among the visitors today.

[Lubomir Polishchuk, Resident of Kyiv]:
“My grandmother survived the famine, her brother died in her arms. I remember my grandmother always told me about that. Of course, it was difficult and unpleasant to listen this.”

[Olesya Trachuk, Resident, Ternopol Region]:
„My grandmother was from the Kharkiv region, and it survived the Famine. Through her I learned about the horrors that occurred at that time. About how much people suffered, about how they had no food, about how their children died right before their eyes.”

[Oksana Lisovskaya and Tatiana Palyga, Residents of Kyiv]:
“We came here to remember those who died, to show honor, to show that we remember what, unfortunately, was done to innocent people.”

In 2006 the Ukrainian Parliament recognized the famine of 1932-1933 as genocide of the Ukrainian people.

After that, 13 other countries also gave their recognition, include Poland, Australia and Canada

NTD, Kyiv, Ukraine