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13.12.2017

HOLODOMOR COMMEMORATION ON PARLIAMENT HILL

 

 

        Ottawa – On Monday, November 20, 2017 the 84th anniversary of the Holodomor was observed on Parliament Hill with a formal commemoration held to mark Stalin’s famine-genocide directed against the people of Ukraine in 1932-1933.

        The Holodomor commemoration was jointly hosted by the Canada-Ukraine Parliamentary Friendship Group (CUPFG), the Ukrainian Canadian Congress (UCC) and the Embassy of Ukraine. Holodomor survivors Dr. Julia Woychyshyn and Halyna Zelem lit the memorial candle to open the commemoration and through their participation provided a direct link to Stalin’s genocide by famine which slowly starved to death millions of Ukrainians.

        Addresses on the Holodomor and its impact on the Ukrainian people were delivered by the Minister of National Defence Honourable Harjit Sajjan, Official Opposition Leader Hon. Andrew Scheer, NDP House Leader Guy Caron, MP, Ukrainian Ambassador H.E. Andriy Shevchenko, UCC National Executive Member Cassian Soltykevych, Chair of the Holodomor National Awareness Tour Bob Onyschuk, and CUPFG Chair MP Borys Wrzesnewskyj, who served as master of ceremonies.

        The spiritual portion of the program included an opening prayer by the Spiritual Director at the Holy Spirit Ukrainian Catholic Seminary Rev. Fr. Andrew Onuferko, a closing prayer by Rev. Fr. Ihor Okhrimtchouk of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Ukrainian Orthodox Cathedral and a moving performance of Vichnaya Pam’yat by members of the Choir of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Ukrainian Orthodox Cathedral.

        Parliamentarians and their staff, members of the diplomatic corps, and members of public in attendance had an opportunity to view the trailer to a new documentary film entitled “Hunger for Truth: The Rhea Clyman Story.” The film tells the story of Rhea Clyman, a Canadian reporter who witnessed the Holodomor and was one of the first journalists who filed stories on this genocide.

        Throughout the day, parliamentarians and their staff had an opportunity to visit the Holodomor National Awareness Tour mobile classroom which was given special permission for access on Parliament Hill.

        In his opening remarks, CUFG Chair Borys Wrzesnewskyj underscored: “As we memorialize the Holodomor, let us not lose sight that today a new evil has once again been visited upon these same lands. Once again, the Kremlin is intent on rebuilding empire. Thousands have laid down their lives. Stalin used apparatchiks, red brigades, Potemkin villages and journalists such as Durante; today Putin uses hybrid warfare, little green men; RTV international and internet trolls. To the millions of innocent victims of the Holodomor from humanity’s tragic past, let us make a pledge of two simple words: ‘БІЛЬШ НІКОЛИ’ ‘NEVER AGAIN.’”

 

 

 

 

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