24 January 2014
Ukrainian World Congress President urges the United Nations to mediate a peaceful and democratic resolution of the crisis in Ukraine
On 22 January 2014 during a meeting at the United Nations (UN) headquarters in New York with Ms. Elizabeth Spehar, Director, Europe Division, UN Department of Political Affairs, and Ms. Kaisa Liljestrom, Political Affairs Officer, in the same department, Ukrainian World Congress (UWC) President Eugene Czolij urged the UN to mediate a peaceful and democratic resolution of the crisis in Ukraine.
The UWC President emphasized that the move by Ukraine's governing authorities to authoritarianism and the escalation of brutality by its special units has resulted in shootings on journalists and killings of protesters. Moreover, Eugene Czolij expressed his support for the appeal by UN Secretary‑General Ban Ki‑moon to uphold the democratic principles of freedom of expression and peaceful assembly in Ukraine and the statement by UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navanethem Pillay calling for a suspension of the implementation of new anti-protest laws in Ukraine.
"The Ukrainian World Congress also calls upon President Viktor Yanukovych and opposition and EuroMaidan leaders to formally request that the UN mediate a process that would help Ukraine emerge from its rapidly deteriorating crisis," stated UWC President Eugene Czolij.
Together with Ukrainian Congress Committee of America President and Vice Chair of UWC's United Nations Committee Tamara Olexy, Eugene Czolij also met with the representative of the U.S. Mission on the UN NGO Committee, Ms. Kyla Brooke, and the Permanent Representative of Poland to the UN, Ambassador Ryszard Sarkowicz. During these meetings, the UWC President emphasized the importance for the U.S. and Poland to continue supporting the difficult struggle for Ukraine's democratization and Euro-integration.
The UWC is the international coordinating body for Ukrainian communities in the diaspora representing the interests of over 20 million Ukrainians. The UWC has member organizations in 33 countries and ties with Ukrainians in 14 additional countries. Founded in 1967, the UWC was recognized in 2003 by the United Nations Economic and Social Council as a non‑governmental organization (NGO) with special consultative status.