Saturday, September 17, Philadelphia Mayor John Street decorated Victor Yushchenko with the Philadelphia Liberty Medal.
“I am dedicating this award to the Ukrainian nation, all citizens of the free and democratic country,” said the President in his speech.
Then, he quoted George Washington: “When freedom takes root, its growth can never be stopped.”
The President stressed that the peaceful and democratic Orange Revolution demonstrated that “Ukrainians cordially respect democratic values of justice and independence.”
Yushchenko thanked all Philadelphia Ukrainians for coming to congratulate him: “It is very pleasant and cozy to see the people dressed in national costumes and Ukrainian flags thousands of miles away from my Motherland.”
In his speech, Pennsylvania Governor Edward G. Rendell noted that “the fire of freedom lit in Philadelphia in 1776 crossed borders and reached Ukraine.
“We were happy to see Ukrainians peacefully protest for the sake of democracy and freedom,” he said.
Chairman of the Philadelphia Foundation Craig Lewis, Mayor John Street, and Ukrainian boxer Vitaly Klytchko also addressed the audience.
The guests watched documentaries about the Philadelphia Liberty Medal and the Orange Revolution.
Today, the Ben Franklin Bridge in Philadelphia will be lit orange in honor of President Yushchenko.
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