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Position of the participants of the CivilMPlus platform on EU assistance to Ukraine

25.03.2022 | civilmplus.org

Participants of the International Independent Civil Society Platform CivilMPlus from Ukraine and the EU member states unequivocally condemn Russia’s attack on Ukraine and consider Russia an aggressor country, headed by Vladimir Putin, as well as many other government officials and the military, who are responsible for war crimes, crimes against international law and against humanity committed by Russia in Ukraine since 2014.

We call on Russia and its leadership to immediately stop the aggression and start full-fledged peace negotiations.

From the very beginning of the new large-scale escalation of the war, the work of the platform has been focused on supporting our Ukrainian participants and their partner networks, who, together with millions of other Ukrainians, directly feel all the horrors of the war and the crimes of the Russian army and other security forces.

We have also launched active advocacy activities aimed at ensuring support of Ukraine by the countries of the European Union.

Now Ukraine is waging a hard fight not only for its own survival, but for the survival of the entire free and democratic world, literally defending universal values. The unity of the EU member states in the issue of unequivocal and resolute support for Ukrainians is extremely important, namely:

  • Military support of the Ukrainian state, which is waging a defensive war against a foreign invader. Such assistance includes defensive equipment, small arms, anti-tank, anti-aircraft and heavy weapons. Ukraine must be given the opportunity to close its skies and protect civilians. The urgent provision of combat aircraft and air defence systems, as requested by the President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy, could mean the difference between life and death for thousands of civilians, including hundreds of children.
  • Humanitarian support of the population of Ukraine, a significant part of which was forced to leave their homes due to the war.
  • Political support, in particular, the decision to urgently grant Ukraine the status of an EU candidate country, and later an EU member under a special speedup procedure. The introduction of tough sanctions: against the head of the aggressor country, Vladimir Putin, the military leadership of the Russian Federation, and against Russia – the aggressor state, the continuation of economic ties with which results in indirect financing of the war. The refusal to buy Russian energy resources by all EU countries is an important lever of pressure, despite the possible inconvenience to the citizens of these countries – this could not only help to save the lives of Ukrainians, but also will be a long-term contribution to their own security in the face of the unpredictability of the Kremlin. Europe has the power to significantly influence Russia’s ability to continue this war and force it to stop, withdraw its troops and sit down at the negotiating table.
  • Support for the economy and financial stability of Ukraine. After the war, assistance will be required in the comprehensive reconstruction of Ukraine, including through assistance in obtaining reparations from Russia.

Many EU member states and their societies provide excellent examples of strong support of Ukraine’s defensive capability. At the same time, the leading economies of the European Union – Germany and France – still consider it possible to do business with Russia or not provide effective support to Ukraine, especially in matters of arms supplies.

The understanding in Western societies of the threat that Russia poses now and the role that Ukraine is playing in taking the brunt of Putin’s war machine is a prerequisite for the security of the inhabitants of Western democracies in the future.

Statements by some Western European politicians that the responsibility for the war lies solely with Putin are an unforgivable simplification in matters of personal and collective responsibility for unleashing and waging an aggressive war, war crimes and violations of international law. Today, millions of Russians bear collective and personal responsibility both for starting the war in Ukraine and for its speedy end. In the future, the Russian people will have to compensate for the losses of Ukraine.

Russia’s losses in this war are not only soldiers and huge amounts of funds spent on armaments, but also an outflow of human resources, in particular a large number of representatives of Russian civil society, journalists, academic circles with a critical vision of the actions of their government, who were taking an anti-war position and conducting activities aimed at supporting Ukraine, observation of the international law by Russia and change of the attitude of Russian society towards war.

We sincerely wish Ukraine a speedy victory in this war for freedom, law and justice!

Glory to Ukraine and its defenders!

The member organisations of the platform that have signed this statement:
International Partnership for Human Rights (Belgium)
MEMORIAL Deutschland e.V. (Germany)
DRA e.V. (Germany)
Assemblée Européenne des Citoyens (France)
Centre of Public Initiatives “Ideas for Change” (Ukraine)
Ukrainian Helsinki Human Rights Union (Ukraine)
Center for Civil Liberties (Ukraine)
Kharkiv Human Rights Protection Group (Ukraine)
Country of Free People (Ukraine)
Luhansk Oblast Human Rights Center “Alternativa” (Ukraine)
Truth Hounds (Ukraine)

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For additional information or media inquiries, please contact Artem Danylchenko, Communications Coordinator – [email protected].

The independent international civil society platform CivilMPlus was established in 2017. It includes organisations and experts from Ukraine, the Netherlands, Germany, Poland and France.

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