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Solidarity with Ukraine remains essential

Photo: Destroyed city centre of Kharkiv, Ukraine, March 2022 - Pavel Dorogoj


Today, the Max van der Stoel Foundation in cooperation with Libereco and PvdA International is organising a political cafe with the theme 'Solidarity with Ukraine', for which you can submit your this page can register. During the event, the situation Ukraine will be discussed in two panels. The first panel will discuss the experiences of Ukrainian civil society after one and a half years of war. The second panel will discuss how support and solidarity can be sustained in a sustainable way in the Netherlands and Europe. In the prelude to the political café, it is important to give a brief overview of the state of affairs in Ukraine.



After 600 days it can be concluded that the war is very bloody and disastrous and that the end is not yet in sight for the time being. Meanwhile, a total of more than 500,000 dead or injured. For now, there is no prospect of peace and Russia continues to bombard Ukraine with missiles and keeps it occupied large parts of eastern and south-eastern Ukraine. Where Russia had a strong upper hand at first, Ukraine has managed to keep the Russian army from advancing further, partly through the supply of large quantities of modern weaponry from several allies including NATO. The Ukrainians also succeeded in capturing areas in eastern Ukraine recapture on the Russians.


Support for Ukraine

It is important to see what the future holds. As the war continues, it is important that Ukraine's allies, including the EU and the United States, continue to provide financial, material and moral support. Yet there are several threats to support for Ukraine. For instance, in the US House of Representatives, there is a small group of Republican members seeking to have aid to Ukraine suspended. This has caused even the drop off of the Republican Speaker of the House ensured. Without a chairman, no major decisions can be made in the House and possibly support for Ukraine cannot continue, as it is US government debt ceiling cannot be increased. The deal concluded on this matter runs until 14 November, after which it is unclear to what extent financial aid to Ukraine is still possible. However, President Biden indicated will do everything possible to continue supporting Ukraine.

There also seems to be crumbling support for Ukraine in several EU countries. Thus Poland already briefly withdrew its support after a diplomatic row with Ukraine over grain. Slovakia has also seen declining support. There, a fortnight ago, the Smer party won handsomely, which promised in the campaign to Ending Slovak support to Ukraine. However, whether the aid will actually be stopped remains to be seen. Peter Kmec, a member of Smer's coalition partner, said in a interview with the FMS that he is confident that the new Slovak government will adhere to the EU and NATO common positions and will not break with them when it comes to support to Ukraine. The threatened withdrawal seems to be mainly electoral rhetoric and it does not look like support to Ukraine will be withdrawn any time soon.


Sustainable reconstruction

Despite the fact that peace does not seem to be within reach at the moment, supporting sustainable reconstruction is of great importance. Currently, money for Ukraine's recovery is already coming in through various parties. For instance, the EU has launched a new 'Marshall Plan' set up, contributing to reconstruction. However, it is important that these money flows are properly monitored, in order to check that the money actually reaches the intended places.

All this will be discussed at our political café tonight. The Ukrainian voice is very important here, as they themselves can best explain what is going on in Ukraine. Together, we can ensure that attention continues to be paid to the horrific war in Ukraine and we remain in solidarity with Ukraine.

Register here for tonight's event!