Lithuanian Canadians Express Solidarity with Ukraine
Together with the Central and Eastern European Council and the Baltic Federation of Canada, Lithuanians in Toronto and Vancouver commemorated Black Ribbon Day and the 33rd anniversary of the Baltic Way. The event was dedicated to the 31st anniversary of Ukraine’s independence as an expression of solidarity with Ukrainians fighting the Russian occupation of their country.
In Toronto, Estonians, Latvians and Lithuanians joined together as they did 33 years ago to create the Baltic Way, on Saturday, August 27, at Toronto Centennial Park. Speeches by local dignitaries and the organizer, Lithuanian Ambassador to Canada Darius Skusevičius were followed by Ukrainians songs and folk dancing.
The previous Sunday, Baltic representatives attended the traditional ecumenical Black Ribbon Day service at the Estonian St. Peter’s Church.
In Vancouver, the Black Ribbon Day commemoration was held at the Plaza Gallery on August 21, with speakers encouraging support for Ukraine and remembering the victims of Nazi and Soviet terrorism brought about by the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact of 1939, and the Baltic Way in 1989, when two million Balts joined hands to create a human chain stretching 700 kilometres through the three countries. In January of 1991, Ukrainians followed suit with their own 700-kilometre chain of hope and determination to be free. The event was attended by officials from the city of Vancouver and representatives of the Ukrainian, Polish and Baltic Communities of BC.
In Ottawa, Ontario, 31 diplomats and community representatives – friends of the Ukrainian community in Canada – gathered at the Rideau Club on the eve of Ukrainian Independence Day to discuss support for Ukraine. The event was organized by the Ukrainian Ambassador to Canada Yuliya Kovaliv and Darius Skusevičius, Lithuanian Ambassador to Canada.