Poroshenko: Quotes from speech on Day of Dignity and Freedom

Source : 112 Ukraine

The Head of the Ukrainian state turned to the society on the occasion of the holiday
12:56, 21 November 2016

Press Service of the President of Ukraine

A charity fund will be organized to collect money to build the Memorial Museum of the Heavenly Hundred.

Everything will be fine – as long as we keep certain politicians away from annulling our hard-won achievements. The society now demonstrates a truly astonishing unity, while the politicians prove their egoism and segregation. They completely ignore the need to adjust and hold the level of political competition within reasonable bounds. The competition of a democratic government with oppositions should not grow into a domestic war, the war with no rules, which weakens the state in the face of the foreign aggression. The dirtier the water, the more chances the enemy will be fishing there.

The Russian authoritarian regime, which rubbed the democracy out in the outhouse inside its own state, willingly uses the democratic tools to achieve its own goals beyond Russia.  

I did not succumb under the pressure of the foreign aggression and I did not introduce the martial law in Ukraine. Such step would significantly add to the president’s – and that of the Supreme Commander’s – authority. But I never thought about myself; I thought about the country, about the need to save and strengthen what is the token of the European culture, the system of checks and balances, political competitiveness, rights and freedoms of Ukrainian citizens and, above all – the freedom of speech.        

Related: Leaders of state congratulate Ukrainians on Day of Dignity and Freedom

Many Ukrainians all across the country mark the Day of Dignity and Freedom; the new public holiday was established in 2014 under the decree of President Poroshenko.

November 21 became a truly historical day for the Ukrainian state and its nation. The Euromaidan movement, which supported Ukraine’s EU integration, grew into the series of protests against the-then pro-Russian president Yanukovych and the government, which blocked the signature of EU-Ukraine Association Agreement. The protests turned violent on November 30 and then in early 2014, when the riot police tried to disperse the crowd several times – up to the use of lethal weapons. In February 2014, the conflict reached its hottest point; about a hundred of people, most of them unarmed peaceful protesters, were gunned down by snipers – by the light of day, in the downtown Ukrainian capital.

Today, when Ukrainian citizens mark the solemn date, about 18,000 law enforcers will maintain security all across the country. 380 public actions are to take place all over Ukraine, with over 66,000 people planning to join them. 11,000 of those will join rallies in Kyiv.   

Related: Day of Dignity and Freedom in Kyiv: downtown shut off

Related: Ukrainians mark Day of Dignity and Freedom

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