The relevant statement was made by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky during the events on the occasion of Ukraine’s Border Guards Day, an Ukrinform correspondent reports, referring to the Office of the President of Ukraine.
Zelensky mentioned that it is an honor for him to congratulate Ukrainian border guards on their professional holiday.
“Assessing how strongly you defend our state, we can only thank you, heroes, border guards,” the Head of State said.
The President of Ukraine noted the strength with which the border guard troops are defending Bakhmut, Avdiivka, Marinka, other towns and villages of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions in the fiercest battles, and the resolve with which the border guards in the ranks of Ukraine’s Defense Forces liberated Kyiv, Kharkiv, Kherson and northern regions of Ukraine from the occupier.
During the defense against Russian aggression, a total of 2,193 border guards were already awarded state awards, and 11 of them – the title of Hero of Ukraine.
“Each such award is a story of our warrior’s personal feat and the story of the salvation of our entire country, the whole of Ukraine. Because Ukraine’s independence is not some kind of abstraction, but a very concrete result that everyone who fights for Ukraine achieves for it. Unfortunately, at the cost of their own lives,” Zelensky emphasized.
The Head of State noted that 11 border guards had been awarded the title of Hero of Ukraine, and nine of them posthumously. In particular, these are Senior Lieutenant Vyacheslav Semenov, Major Heorhii Strelkov, Lieutenant Colonel Ihor Dashko, Colonel Roman Hakh, Colonel Vitalii Kucheriavyi, Colonel Yevhenii Pikus, Colonel Yurii Yurchyk, and Major General Ihor Momot. Ukraine will always remember them and all other Ukrainian warriors who gave their lives for the sake of Ukraine and the Ukrainian people, Zelensky added.
The attendees honored the memory of the fallen Ukrainian warriors with a moment of silence.
President Zelensky presented the border guards with the following state awards: the Order ‘For Courage’ of the III degree, medals ‘For Military Service to Ukraine’, ‘For Impeccable Service’ of the III degree, and ‘To the Defender of the Homeland’.
Additionally, the Head of State conferred military ranks and presented the shoulder marks of Major General to the Head of the Eastern Regional Directorate of the State Border Guard Service of Ukraine Valerii Vavryniuk, shoulder marks of Brigadier General to the First Deputy Head of the Southern Regional Directorate of the SBGSU - Chief of Staff Oleksandr Rybak, shoulder marks of Brigadier General of the Medical Service to the Head of the Healthcare Department of the SBGSU Administration Mykhailo Karnaukh.
Five border guard detachments of the Ukrainian State Border Guard Service received the ribbons of honor ‘For Courage and Bravery’.
Following the ceremony, Zelensky was introduced to the modern samples of special military equipment and weapons of Ukrainian border guards.
A reminder that, on April 30, Ukraine marks Day of the Border Guards of Ukraine.