Joachim Gauck: Ukraine has its own place in European history as a sovereign nation

Joachim Gauck: Ukraine has its own place in European history as a sovereign nation

Since the end of the "Cold War" Ukraine has reminded the world that it has its own place in European history as a sovereign nation and state whose territorial integrity should be respected. 

This is what German President Joachim Gauck said at events to commemorate the victims of Babyn Yar, an Ukrinform correspondent reports.

"With the end of the Cold War Ukrainians reminded us that they have their place in European history. They reminded us that Ukraine today and in the future has a place in the family of nations as a sovereign nation and state, whose territorial integrity should be respected," said Gauck.

According to him, in Germany they have seen Ukrainians as fighters for freedom, democracy and statehood, and therefore - as part of the "European community of values." "We learned a lot about Ukraine as a nation and something about our own role and responsibility," he added.

He noted that perhaps the Holodomor, with its numerous victims, is more strongly imprinted in the collective memory of the Ukrainian nation than the crimes committed at Babyn Yar.

"But I, as president of Germany, stand here still in despair and sorrow because of the disgusting crimes carried out by other Germans in another time. But a look at the past improves my view of the present. When I bow my head before all the victims of those times, I stand shoulder to shoulder with all people who now call their name injustice, help the persecuted and intercede relentlessly for the rights of those who are denied human rights,” the president of Germany said summing up.


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