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18.12.2009

Kirklees Council recognises Holodomor as genocide

   

After an extensive campaign led by Steve Komarnyckyj Kirklees Council in the United Kingdom has recognised the Holodomor as an act of genocide.  It joins Keighley, Rochdale, Bolton, Edinburgh and Bradford Councils who have previously recognised Holodomor as genocide. 

The article below is taken from the Association of Ukrainians of Great Britain website and was written by Mykola Lajszczuk.

This evening, at a full meeting of Kirklees Council, over 20 members of the Ukrainian community in Huddersfield attended the Council Chamber to present a motion to recognise Holodomor as genocide. This followed an exhibition on Holodomor on Sunday 29 November at the Ukrainian Centre in Huddersfield, which was attended by the Deputy Mayor and Mayoress, the Leader of Kirklees Council and several Council members. Dr Siriol Colley, great-niece of Gareth Jones, who reported on Holodomor in the 1930s, read extracts from his diaries - notes which he made while travelling through Ukraine to see the effects of the famine for himself. 

Denis Dumskij, Ivan Czolacz and Steve Komarnycky accompanied Mykola Lajszczuk, who presented facts about Holodomor and a letter of support from HE Dr Ihor Kharchenko, Ambassador of Ukraine. Mr Lajszczuk then read the motion and requested recognition that Holodomor was an act of genocide against the Ukrainian nation. A debate followed, during which Cllr Smithson expressed deep sympathy for the sufferings of the Ukrainian people and urged further political action at a national level. He then formally proposed the motion, which was seconded by Cllr Dodds. The Leader of the Council, Cllr Khan, spoke with great conviction about supporting Ukrainians in their objective to secure recognition of Holodomor as genocide and called on councillors to support the motion.

The motion was carried unanimously. 

AUGB congratulates the community in Huddersfield for the commitment they have shown and for their significant achievement. Kirklees Council now joins Keighley, Rochdale, Bolton, Edinburgh and Bradford Councils who have previously recognised Holodomor as genocide.

The motion passed by the Council reads: ‘This Council remembers the many millions of victims of the Ukrainian Famine, known as the Ukrainian Holocaust or Holodomor, inflicted on the Ukrainian Nation between 1932 and 1933 by Stalin as part of his plan for collectivisation during which over seven million Ukrainians died, and recognises this as an act of Genocide against the Ukrainian Nation, and to ask Her Majesty’s Government to also recognise the Holodomor as Genocide.’

 This is a quote from a communist leader speaking in the Kharkiv region in 1934:
"Famine in Ukraine was brought on to decrease the number of Ukrainians, replace the dead with people from other parts of the USSR, and thereby to kill the slightest thought of any Ukrainian independence."
In Ukrainian:
'"Голод на Україні був викликаний для того, щоб зменшити кількість українців, переселити на їхнє місце людей з іншої частини СРСР і цим убити будь-яку думку про самостійність." Комуніст Прокопенко, уповноважений Сахновщинського районного виконавчого комітету (Харківської області) проговорився про голод перед групою колгоспників і 12 травня 1934 р.'
- V. Danilov et al., Sovetskaia derevnia glazami OGPU_NKVD. T. 3, kn. 2. Moscow 2004. P. 572

With thanks to Professor Roman Serbyn whose research provided this quote and Aleks Kalashnik who sent it to me and whose blog is here:

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