Watch: Rally for Ukraine on the steps of the Senedd
A rally was held at 6pm this evening on the steps of the Senedd in Cardiff Bay to show solidarity with the people of Ukraine and to call for an end to the war.
Speakers at the rally included Svitlana Phillips, of Voice of Ukraine Wales, Adam Price MS, leader of Plaid Cymru, and Mick Antoniw MS, the Welsh Government’s Counsel General, who is of Ukrainian descent.
Adam Price and Mick Antoniw recently returned from a delegation to Ukraine, in which they discussed the realities facing the people of Ukraine.
The rally was held after Russia invaded Ukraine on Thursday of last week.
Speaking ahead of the rally Svitlana Phillips, of Voice of Ukraine Wales, said: “I would like to urge people to come to the rally tonight at the Senedd. Our main concern, around the world, is that we stand together against what Putin is doing in Ukraine.
“The resistance to what Putin is doing can be seen on the streets of Ukraine, but Putin must also see that we are all pulling together around the world against him.
“In recent days, I have received calls from family saying that tanks on the border are moving through – people are terrified, people are not looking for explanation, they just want to see an end to the invasion.
“People in Ukraine are grateful for all the support from UK. If we stand together, we can prevent the horrible events that might happen. So, I’d like to appeal for people to not watch the news this evening, but to make it.”
Plaid Cymru leader, Adam Price, said that in Kyiv last week he had heard “harrowing stories of those who have already been living under Putin’s fascist regime”.
He called on the UK Government to tighten the embargo on Russia and to help Ukraine financially.
“Now, he has declared war not just on the right of the Ukrainian nation to exist – but on freedom, democracy and human rights everywhere.
“By gathering tonight, we in Wales will show that we stand in complete solidarity with the people of Ukraine – and against Putin’s war.
“We call upon the UK Government to impose a total economic embargo on Putin’s government including on oil and gas sales, cancel Ukraine’s foreign debt, and provide a visa-waiver and fast-track residency status to all Ukrainians fleeing war.
“Finally, we should signal our intention to bring an indictment against Putin, Lavrov and others for the crime of aggression so that one day they will be held accountable at the Hague.”
Mick Antoniw MS, said that the war in Ukraine “has become a peoples’ war against Russian oppression and for freedom”.
“We must ensure a total economic, political and cultural boycott of Russia and from Wales give full support to those refugees who want to come to Wales for safety,” he said.
“We must all protest against Russia’s attack on democracy.
“I thank all Welsh people for their support so far, but there is much more to do over the coming dark days ahead. Ukraine will be free!”
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