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17.11.2006

Leaders of Ukraine’s Churches call on the Verkhovna Rada to declare Holodomor an act of genocide

   

To the Speaker of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, Oleksandr Moroz

To the State Deputies

On behalf of the members of our Churches – Orthodox, Greek Catholic and Roman Catholic – we are turning to you with regard to the need to recognize Holodomor of 1932-1933 as having been an act of genocide against the Ukrainian people.

For ideological motives in 1932-1933 members of the Soviet regime planned and carried out one of the most mass-scale acts of extermination of a civilian population in world history. Within the boundaries of the former Ukrainian SSR, as well as in regions where there were large concentrations of Ukrainians, the local authorities, following the instructions of the highest leadership of the USSR, consciously and deliberately took away all food, and in the first instance, grain. The result of this action was the extermination through an artificially caused holodomor [famine] of between 7 and 10 million of our fellow country people. The death of those people was the result not of natural cataclysms, military action or epidemics, but of the inhuman brutality of those in power who knowingly doomed people to starvation.  Despite efforts over decades to conceal the fact of Holodomor, the truth about it is irrefutably borne testimony to by numerous documents and witnesses.

The memory of those who perished calls on the conscience of the living, and the evil cannot be overcome until it is recognized and condemned as evil. Holodomor is one of the most tragic pages of Ukrainian history. At the level of the last World War, it was the cause of death of millions of our country people.

We are convinced that legislative recognition of the artificial famine of 1932-1933 as an act of genocide against the Ukrainian people will be a just assessment of the events of the past, the honouring of the memory of millions of innocent victims and a warning to the present and future generations.  In the name of our Churches, We therefore support the draft law on the recognition of Holodomor 1932-1933 as an act of genocide against the Ukrainian people, submitted by the President of Ukraine Viktor Yushchenko.

We would ask you, esteemed Oleksandr Oleksandrovych and State Deputies to support this draft law and through legislation acknowledge of the greatest tragedies of Ukrainian and world history.

May God’s blessing be upon you!

 

Filaret, Patriarch of Kyiv and all Rus-Ukraine, the Ukrainian Orthodox Church under the Kyiv Patriarchate

Cardinal Lubomyr, Major Archbishop, the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church

Cardinal Marian Javorski, Head of the Conference of Roman Catholic Bishops of Ukraine

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