On January 22, 2017, Ukraine celebrates an important event in its history – the Day of Unity of Ukraine.
In 1917 the Ukrainian People’s Republic was proclaimed. On 22 January 1918, Ukraine’s first government, the Central Council, proclaimed that the Ukrainian People’s Republic was an independent, free and sovereign State of the Ukrainian people. Over the same period the Western Ukrainian People's Republic was formed in the Western Ukraine, with its capital in Lviv.
January 22, 1919 another significant event took place in Kyiv’s St.Sophia Square – the merger of the Ukrainian People Republic and the West Ukrainian People Republic into a unified state. The two republics signed the Act of Union to form a single state.
Nevertheless, at that time Ukraine could not complete the process of its unification and for several decades it was separated ethnically and oppressed nationally.
At the end of the XX century independent Ukraine joined the world community and gained wide international recognition and support.
Nowadays Ukraine marks the Day of Unity of Ukraine in order to pay tribute to the authors of the Unification Act and to commemorate those who lost their lives in the struggle for the Ukrainian independence, unity and statehood.
Three years ago Ukrainians again faced the threat of loss of statehood, sovereignty and territories. Ukrainians made their choice, coming to squares and streets, protecting their right to choose the European path of development. But the previous leadership of Ukraine, against the actions and policies of which thousands of Ukrainians were protesting, in attempts to stay in power failed to brutal means of suppressing the will of the people of Ukraine. January 22, 2014, first activists Armenian S.Nihoyan, Ukrainian Y.Verbytskyy and Belarusian M.Zhyznevskyy were shot... They fought for an independent and united Ukraine.
Today Ukrainian soldiers in the area of ATO defend not only the independence but also unity of Ukraine like their predecessors 100 years ago.
January 19, 2017, Embassy of Ukraine held an event in the Ukrainian cultural center in Israel to mark the Day of Unity of Ukraine and to honor the courage and patriotism of citizens of all nationalities who defend democratic values, human rights and freedoms and national interests of Ukraine.
In difficult times for Ukraine when its citizens have to defend its statehood, independence and territory, we once again understand that the pursuit of peace, freedom and independence is universal and understandable for representatives of all nationalities.
Today, when we have Ukrainian territories which are outside of the control of the Ukrainian authorities the Day of Unity of Ukraine is an occasion to remind that Crimea and Donetsk region belong to Ukraine.