Prime Minister Anthony Albanese reaffirmed Australia’s support for the Ukrainian people as the nation celebrates 31 years of independence, six months after the outbreak of war with Russia.
Albanese said the two nations will continue to celebrate “the bonds of humanity through which we will surely find the peace we seek”.
“On Independence Day, Australia celebrates the contribution of Australian Ukrainians and the more than 3,800 Ukrainians that we have welcomed since February,” he said in a statement Wednesday.
“Share gifts of culture, faith and history that enrich us all.
“We are one with you and we share your pain for the tragedy that is unfolding in Ukraine”.
Australia has been steadfast in its support for the besieged nation as it struggles to defend itself from Russian aggression, he said.
“Ukraine’s resistance to the brutal invasion of Russia is proof of the world’s commitment to the ideals of democracy and the integrity of international borders,” added Albanese.
The opposition also expressed support on Wednesday, calling on the federal government to do whatever it takes to keep Australia at the forefront of supporting Ukraine.
“Australia has sided with Ukraine and continues to condemn Russia’s atrocious actions,” opposition leader Peter Dutton said in a joint statement with his defense and government spokespersons. Foreign Affairs.
“This 31st Independence Day will be a difficult day for many Ukrainians, as it also marks exactly six months since the beginning of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
“We mourn for those whose lives have been lost, including many women and children.”
Public celebrations in Ukraine were canceled and the United States warned its citizens to leave amid fears of further Russian attacks.
President Volodymyr Zelenskiy warned of further strikes as authorities banned public gatherings in the capital Kiev and imposed a curfew in the eastern city of Kharkiv.
Mr. Zelenskiy also promised “a powerful response” against Russia at a press conference Tuesday as his government unveiled burned Russian tanks in central Kiev in an act of defiance.
Ukraine broke free from the then Soviet Union in August 1991 after the overwhelming majority of Ukrainians voted in a referendum to declare independence.