Kyiv Mayor, UDAR leader Vitali Klitschko has met with Prague Mayor Zdeněk Hřib and Warsaw Mayor Rafal Trzaskowski, who arrived in Kyiv to express their support and solidarity with Ukraine, as well as discuss Kyiv’s accession to the Pact of Free Cities with Klitschko.
During the meeting, Klitschko noted that the visit of the mayors of European cities is very important for Ukrainians and for him personally.
“Today is a very dramatic moment for my country. Ukraine, for all the time of independence, has never faced such a threat. A threat to its statehood, territorial integrity, its citizens. We are a peaceful state and a peaceful people. And we do not threaten anyone,” Klitschko said.
“But we will protect our freedom and independence, our land from any aggressor. And today the support of every partner, every friend of Ukraine and Kyiv is important to us. And the wider and more powerful such support is, the more deterrence there will be for Russia to launch a full-scale invasion of Ukraine, the likelihood of which is very high today,” he added.
He thanked his colleagues and noted that the very fact of their visit to Kyiv at such a dramatic moment is evidence of support and assistance. He called it symbolic that the signing of the Pact of Free Cities is being discussed right now.
“It is symbolic that today we are discussing the possibility of Kyiv signing the Free Cities Pact, which was established by the mayors of Budapest, Bratislava, Warsaw and Prague in Budapest on December 16, 2019. The pact aims to protect and promote the values of freedom, dignity, democracy, the rule of law and social justice. In defense of rights and strengthening of local self-government. And I am convinced that Kyiv, sharing the values of the Pact of Free Cities, should join it!” stressed Klitschko.
Mayor of Prague Hřib noted that he, along with his Polish counterpart, arrived in Kyiv to testify to their support and solidarity with Kyiv and the people of Kyiv.
“We are convinced that Kyiv and Ukraine must have the right to choose their own path. Kyiv must remain a free city. Ukraine – a free state. Russian aggression against Ukraine is unacceptable!” he stressed.
Mayor of Warsaw Trzaskowski also stressed solidarity with Ukraine.
“Kyiv and Warsaw are sister cities. We came to ask: how can we help? We are with you. Both as a nation and as a city. Ukrainians are the largest foreign community in Warsaw. They help develop our city. We appreciate it. And we are very concerned about the events that are unfolding in Ukraine. Poland is the first country that recognized the independence of Ukraine. We have always been friends and are always ready to help,” he said.