On February 20, 2023, the Ukrainian World Congress (UWC), and Ukrainian communities around the world, join Ukraine in honouring the memory of the brave men and women who gave their lives for a free, sovereign, and democratic Ukraine during the 2014 Revolution of Dignity – popularly known as “the Heroes of the Heavenly Hundred.”
Nine years ago, the world witnessed the Ukrainian people stand up to defend their freedom and dignity against the oppressive, Russian-controlled and kleptocratic regime ruling over their country. The murder of peaceful protesters by government forces on the streets of downtown Kyiv from February 18-20, 2014, was the turning point of the Revolution of Dignity. When Yanukovych realized his murderous brutality could not put down the uprising, he fled to his masters in Russia.
“The homicidal Russian regime continues to spread disinformation about the Revolution of Dignity. They absurdly call it a ‘coup’ and label the peaceful protestors as Nazis. Today, the world understands how the Yanukovych regime dismantled Ukraine’s military capability, allowing Russia to easily invade and occupy Crimea and parts of the Donbas. Yanukovych and his cronies robbed the country of its wealth, while their Russian puppet masters Russified and demoralize its people. The brave men and women of the Heavenly Hundred were the first Ukrainians to lay down their lives in fighting twenty-first century Russian imperialism and aggression,” stated Paul Grod, UWC President.
As soon as Putin realized that his grip over Ukraine was lost, Russia launched its military invasion, resulting in the illegal occupation and annexation of Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula, and the occupation of Ukrainian sovereign territories in the Donbas region. Incapable of shattering Ukraine with eight years of low-intensity conflict, the criminal Putin regime launched its genocidal and full-scale military invasion of Ukraine on February 24, 2022.
“In 2014, under the leadership of the Ukrainian World Congress, Ukrainians around the world rallied the international community to support the people of Ukraine in their struggle for dignity and democracy. Today we continue to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with the brave people of Ukraine, as they defend against Russia’s deadly invasion,” Grod added. “The deeds and sacrifice of the Heroes of the Heavenly Hundred serve as testament to the fact that human dignity and democratic values are fundamental to Ukrainian national identity. Ukrainians will never again be oppressed and controlled by Moscow!”