Address by the President of Ukraine on the occasion of Holodomor Remembrance Day
The presidential couple put symbolic compositions of spikelets at the sculpture "Bitter Memory of Childhood". A nationwide moment of silence was declared, after which the all-Ukrainian action "Light a Candle" began.
The children present at the ceremony handed over the lighted icon lamps to the Head of State and the First Lady, which Volodymyr and Olena Zelenskyy installed on the Alley of Black Boards.
The President and the First Lady also visited the National Museum of the Holodomor Genocide and watched its exposition.
Fellow Ukrainians! Dear people!
Every year at the end of autumn, we are all united by a difficult date. And this fourth Saturday in November is actually the first for many of us. By the depth of pain and anger at the same time. By the polarity of what we experience this day. From the feeling of loss to the loss of any feelings. On this day, we are full of emotions and devastated at the same time. We light a candle and get cold shivers.
On this day we cry so quietly that even our silence can be heard. On this day, we honor the millions of our dead ancestors and pray for the souls of millions of dead Ukrainians. This is Holodomor Remembrance Day.
A day when we remember the night. Some of the darkest nights not of the year, not of the decade, but of the whole century in the life of our people. The life that is hard to call life. These are people who were left without a crumb of bread. Parents left without their children. Children left without parents. Generations left without hope. And questions that still remain unanswered.
What is the exact number of Ukrainians killed? Will we ever be able to determine it? What truth do we still not know? Will we ever be able to discover it? How could the government live with all this and conceal crimes for years, decades? Will we ever be able to forget about them? We know the answer to this question - no. We will never forget our ancestors who died in 1921, 1922 and 1923. In 1946 and 1947. And in the worst 1932 and 1933, arranged by the totalitarian Stalinist regime, the years of the Holodomor-genocide.
We have actually completed the reconstruction of the first stage of the Holodomor Museum. Next year marks the 90th anniversary of this terrible tragedy. And by this date we must build the second stage of the historically important museum. I signed a corresponding decree on this and a number of other measures. And it's not just a matter of duty, respect or honor. This is a question of our existence. Because as soon as the memory of millions of dead and unborn Ukrainians disappears, we will disappear ourselves. We will die ourselves. As a nation, as a society, as a state. As people.
We still do not know the names of many Ukrainians who died from the Holodomor. It destroyed entire families, streets, villages. So there is no one to ask. But it could not destroy us completely. So there is someone to remember. And there is someone to pass the memory to the next generations. About the fact that the horror called “Holodomor” has not been described by any dictionary before. Because no ruler has ever been able to invent such an atrocity before. We as a nation have survived this horror. The key word is “survived”. And we won. And the innocent victims of the Holodomor are tortured, murdered, but not forgotten!
May their souls rest in peace!
May the memory of them all live forever!