UKRAINIANS HOLD DAY OF SORROW IN BRADFORD

Bradford
01.12.09




The Ukrainian Community in Bradford commemorated a Day of Sorrow on Saturday 28th November 2009.  The Lord Mayor and Lady Mayoress of Bradford, Cllr John Godward  and Mrs  Jean Godward,  joined members of the Ukrainian community gathered in the Ukrainian Catholic Church of the Holy Trinity on Park View Road, Bradford to remember the millions who starved to death during 1932 and 1933 as a result of deliberate actions by the then  Soviet authorities.

Every year on the fourth Saturday in November Ukrainians remember the Holodomor.  This was  an artificial famine created by a regime determine to subjugate Ukrainians and forcibly absorb them into a greater Soviet Russian people. It resulted in the deaths, by starvation of seven million Ukrainians.  One third of the dead were children.

This year Mrs Orysia Chymera, the Chair of the Association of Ukrainians in Bradford, drew attention to the fact that the President of Ukraine had opened up KGB (Soviet secret police) which reveal the genocidal nature of the actions taken to ensure that millions of Ukrainian peasants were denied food whilst the Soviet Union exported record amounts of wheat.  She also announced that for the first time it was now possible to read the diaries of Gareth Jones, a Welsh journalist who risked his reputation and safety to record the horrific conditions in which Ukrainians were forcibly starved to death.

The commemoration followed a requiem mass lead by Father Mykhaylo Onatsko and involved the placing of ears of wheat by a commemorative candle; a reading of a message from the President of Ukraine, Victor Yushchenko; a reading of extracts from testimonies of people who survived the famine and still live locally and a hymn sung by the Ukrainian Youth Association Female  Choir, “Fialka”.  Later, Mrs Chymera, assisted by Mrs Hania Szlachetko, placed a wreath on the Holodomor memorial stone in the Ukrainian Grove at Jacobs Well in the City Centre.


Orysia Chymera



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