ictor Yushchenko and his family took part in a ceremony to plant a snowball-tree garden on the Dnieper Downhill near the St. Andrew’s Chapel in Kyiv, the President's press office reported.

Parliamentary Speaker Volodymyr Lytvyn, Prime Minister Yuriy Yekhanurov, Secretariat Chief of Staff Oleh Rybachuk, First Deputy Secretariat Chief of Staff Ivan Vasyunyk, NSDCU Secretary Anatoly Kinakh, Kyiv Mayor Oleksandr Omelchenko, Foreign Minister Borys Tarasyuk, Defense Minister Anatoly Hrytsenko, Vitaly Klytchko, Ruslana, Nina Matviyenko, and several parliamentarians were present at the ceremony.

In his speech, the Head of State said this event was vital to commemorate all victims of genocide famines in Ukraine. 

“I would like to emphasize that the most important thing in this day is to see our memory,” he said.
Yushchenko added that by remembering those who tragically starved to death we would never let this tragedy happen again.

The President noted that he did not want to comment on political aspects of those famines. He said it was important to find eye-witnesses of those events to collect evidence.

“I am convinced we should hurry to repent. We should make the whole world learn about this tragic period of our history,” he said.

The Head of State reiterated that only sixty-three countries had signed a UN declaration to acknowledge those famines as genocide, but that was not enough.

Speaking about today’s event, the President said this “simple idea will help us actively study our history.” Yushchenko added that our posterity would know more about the famine than this generation.

About three hundred snowball-trees were planted today. They had been brought from different corners of Ukraine and all districts of Kyiv. There should be ten thousand trees to symbolize all Ukrainian villages that survived the famine.


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