23 sierpnia 2022

Pane Prezydente, Wołodymyre, dorohýj druże! Pani ta Panowe!
Kyjmetlí Kyrým sakinlerí! Kyjmetlí Kyrým dostlarymýz!
Kyrým bu Ukraína
Krym ce Ukrajina!

Tak jak Gdańsk czy Lublin je czastýnoju Polszczi, tak Krym buw, je i bude czastýnoju Ukrajiny!

Ladies and Gentlemen, Presidents, Prime Ministers, Ministers, Representatives of States and Nations!

I started with the obvious, because I have the impression that it has been not obvious enough in recent years.

I remember vividly the first meeting of the Crimea Platform a year ago and the fact that there were only a few, a dozen or so, of us, Presidents and Prime Ministers attending. A completely different line of thinking was prevailing in Europe at the time. It was as if Crimea had been simply gone and while we, the West, would never recognize the fact, it was as if we had to accept that Crimea was under Russian occupation, while some were even getting reconciled with the thought that Crimea was becoming Russia.

And I reiterate, Crimea is as much a part of Ukraine as Gdansk or Lublin are parts of Poland, as Nice is part of France, as Cologne is part of Germany, as Rotterdam is part of the Netherlands.

I think many of us need to do some examination of conscience, bearing in mind what has happened over the past year.

Wasn't the de facto approval of the occupation of Crimea the wrong signal from many countries sent out to Russia? Implying that an appeasement policy towards Russia is feasible and that such a policy would eventually bring about the softening of the occupier's policy.  Implying that it is possible to pursue a business as usual policy. And,  let me remind you that Nord Stream 2 was already under construction after the illegal annexation of Crimea.

Well, Ladies and Gentlemen! There is no return to business as usual in relations with Russia! There isn't! At a time when Russia is waging a war against Ukraine, the country it has attacked, when Russia is occupying internationally recognized territories of other countries, what is needed is a turnaround in the policy of the West, the turnaround that will lead not only to stopping Nord Stream 2, but also to getting rid of this gas pipeline.

Ladies and Gentlemen! I am convinced that after Mariupol, after Bucha, after the bombs falling on Kyiv and Kharkiv, after the missiles flying into Lviv, after Irpin and Borodianka, after Russia's war of attrition against Ukraine, we all need to make it clear: Russia not only has an obligation to withdraw to the February 23 line, but must also reckon with Ukraine's right to liberate all its territory, including Crimea.

At this point, I will also share a personal reflection: I myself have never been to Crimea, much as I always wanted to experience the extraordinary magic of this place, so beautifully rendered by Adam Mickiewicz, the common bard of Poland and Lithuania.

And while after 2014 it crossed my mind that I had missed the moment, in 2022 I do believe, I know I will come to see Crimea. The Ukrainian Crimea! I believe, Volodymyr, that you will show it to me. I will be there, ey güzél Kyrým.

But today we face the Russian invasion. Ukrainian women and men stand in arms protecting Europe from tyranny and totalitarianism. They are paying the highest price for Warsaw and Prague, for Paris, for London, for Berlin.

Ukraine! In this war, Poland is your hinterland, Poland is your ally, Poland is home for your families and children, brothers!

And there is no dispute about it among Poles. If any of my predecessors or successors were sitting here, they would tell you the same thing.

As long as you need us, we are and will be by your side.

Szanołnyj Pane Prezydente, mij druże Wołodymyre!
Dorohí ukrajinśki brattia!
Szcze ne wmerła Ukrajina! Jeszcze Polska nie zginęła!
Razom do peremohy!

May be of interest to you Greetings on the occasion of Independence Day of Ukraine Ukraine is fighting for its independence says President