Supporters of the Ukraine Solidarity Campaign protested in Nottingham on Thursday 18 February along with others from the Ukrainian community against Putin’s threats to the Ukraine.
With posters in Ukrainian, English and Russian they demanded the right of “Ukrainian people of all ethnicities and religions to live in peace and prosperity in a united Ukraine.”
Nadia Whittome the Labour MP for Nottingham East had planned to join the protest but was unable to because of Covid. Her speech to the USC’s protest outside Russia Today was relayed to those assembled.
Amongst those attending was Olena Berezhna, a cleaning worker now living in Nottingham who had recently returned from seeing her family in Kharkiv, close to the Ukrainian border with Russia. She spoke to protestors and the press about her two sons there who will be amongst those fighting back against any invasion. She said: “My son’s girlfriend is a trained nurse and she had to learn how to shoot. Can you imagine? A young woman in her 20s not being scared to defend herself if there was a war? People in Europe cannot be quiet. Ukraine is bleeding and suffering because of one man – Putin.”
Olena had brought a poster in Russian appealing to Russian mothers not to allow their sons to be sent into a further invasion onto Ukrainian soil. Protestors agreed with USC supporter Pete Radcliff when he spoke saying that anti-war activists back in Russia were a crucial ally if Putin’s threats to the Ukraine were to stopped.
All the protesters know that the threat of a Russian invasion remains. A further protest is planned for Sunday, February 27 when all were confident that far greater numbers can be mobilised.
On Twitter at @Pete_Radcliff