Ukrainian at Capitol rally urges Utahns not to be ‘detached’ from the dangers of the Russian invasion

Upwards of a thousand individuals gathered Monday on the Utah Capitol, the place, for the primary time within the state’s historical past, the blue and yellow Ukrainian flag flew alongside the U.S. and Utah flags.

The rally was a wanted present of help for the embattled European nation, mentioned Ivan Bagmet, a Ukrainian man who was pressured to flee together with his household to the U.S. practically eight years in the past.

As a Ukrainian nationalist dwelling in Donetsk — one of many areas that Russian President Vladimir Putin not too long ago declared impartial as a pretext for invasion — Bagmet informed The Salt Lake Tribune that he confronted harsh persecution that culminated in an try on his life in 2014.

The following day, his younger household of 4 fled to Kyiv, Ukraine’s capital, after which flew to Utah.

“[The invasion] is not only Ukraine’s downside, it’s everybody else’s downside as effectively,” he mentioned, referencing Putin’s ominous remarks about nuclear arms. “It’s not going to cease in Ukraine, and proper now it’s a risk to the entire world, together with [the] United States.”

All through the rally, Ukrainians within the crowd raised impassioned shouts of their native language, voicing help for his or her countrymen who at the moment are preventing for his or her lives half a world away. For them, even the Ukrainians dwelling in Utah, Russia’s invasion hits near dwelling.

Bagmet mentioned he has household and pals nonetheless dwelling in Donetsk and Kyiv, together with his mother and father and in-laws.

“As quickly because it began, mainly, my brother referred to as me. It was like 5:38 a.m. within the morning, Ukrainian time,” he mentioned. “For me, it was, like, mainly center of the day. … He simply awoke at 5:38 a.m. as a result of the constructing was shaking from explosions. And he simply referred to as me and mentioned, ‘Hey, it seems prefer it’s began.’”

What adopted had been days spent on the cellphone, checking in on family members, ensuring that everybody was OK.

Up to now, Ukrainian forces have managed to stymie the Russian invasion.

“I do know that nations [are] normally born in tears and blood, and I imagine that’s what’s happening with Ukrainian individuals proper now,” Bagmet mentioned. “As a result of Putin mentioned he [was] going to take over Ukraine inside 48 hours. As you already know, it’s been 5 days … and Ukrainian individuals [are] preventing again.”

Regardless of the satisfaction he has in his nation, and his fellow nationalists, Bagmet mentioned Ukraine alone won’t be able to win this warfare. Russia is just too skilled and is a far larger army energy than its neighbor.

So Ukraine is counting on different nations to offer support.

“As soon as, eight years in the past, I dwell in a peaceable nation,” Bagmet mentioned, warning that the peaceable life loved by many Individuals is fragile. “So, please, don’t be indifferent. Please, attempt to help when you can.”

(Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune) Vlada Yaremenko, from Ukraine, joins lots of of protesters collect on the Utah Capitol for a rally in help of Ukraine, on Monday, Feb. 28, 2022.

Utah Gov. Spencer Cox, Lt. Gov. Deidre Henderson and some lawmakers spoke on the rally, held to indicate solidarity with Ukrainians in Europe and in Utah after an identical occasion on the Capitol on Saturday.

Attendees held yellow flowers, waved flags, and joined in chants of “Ukraine!” and “Zelensky!” — referring to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, who the audio system usually referred to as a “hero.”

Rep. Jordan Teuscher, D-South Jordan, mentioned Russia’s assault on Ukraine impacts not solely Ukrainians like his spouse and her household, but in addition Utahns.

“This assault towards Ukraine is not only an assault towards Ukraine, however an assault towards democracy and an assault towards each single one in every of us,” he mentioned.

The governor and lieutenant governor echoed that sentiment of their transient remarks.

“Our horror at what’s unfolding in Europe with our pals is heightened by the conclusion that freedom, democracy, justice and self-determination is underneath assault,” Henderson mentioned. “We stand with Ukraine not simply due to what’s occurring to its individuals … but in addition as a result of the invasion right into a sovereign nation highlights the fragility of all that we maintain pricey.”

The lieutenant governor additionally quoted Sen. Mitt Romney, referring to Putin as a “small, evil, feral-eyed man” who she mentioned, “deserves each little bit of scorn and condemnation for his evil actions.”

Romney appeared on CNN on Sunday and mentioned Republicans’ help of the Russian president was “nearly treasonous.”

In his speech, Cox expressed love for the 1,500 Ukrainians dwelling within the state, however he additionally spoke to Utah’s Russian inhabitants, saying, “We don’t maintain you liable for the acts of a madman.”

Echoing his weblog submit printed on-line Monday, Cox urged Utahns to place apart division, although the U.S. is “flawed,” he mentioned.

“Our Ukrainian pals are reminding us what it means to be American,” Cox mentioned on the rally. “They want us. They want a united us. They want the perfect of us. And we want them.”

Mayor Erin Mendenhall, who spoke underneath a sky she described as “nearly as blue because the stripe on the Ukrainian flag,” mentioned Russia’s assault on Ukraine was private for her.

Her household fled Russian-occupied Lithuania throughout World Conflict II, she mentioned, and so they had been by no means ready to return. “Our democracy is barely as secure as our dedication to it,” she mentioned.

Mendenhall additionally referred to as on Utahns to ship help to the Salt Lake Metropolis sister cities of Chernivtsi in Ukraine, and Izhevsk in Russia.

The rally was held on one other busy day on the Utah Legislature, however Republican Home Speaker Rep. Brad Wilson mentioned that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine warranted lawmakers hitting the “pause button.”

Simply hours earlier than the rally, the Utah Legislature unanimously handed a invoice denouncing Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and urging the U.S. federal authorities to “restore peace in Europe.”

The rally closed with a prayer from Rabbi Samuel Spector of Congregation Kol Ami, in addition to a prayer in Ukrainian from a girl carrying a blue scarf who was recognized solely as Anna.

The rally’s host, entrepreneur Owen Fuller, mentioned that the Utah Capitol could be lit up in yellow and blue for Ukraine as soon as the sky darkened Monday night, as had been the governor’s mansion, the College of Utah’s block U. and plenty of companies all through Salt Lake Metropolis and the state.

Cox mentioned that the one different time the Utah Capitol has been lit up was in the course of the 2002 Winter Olympics.

Hundreds gather at state Capitol to rally support for Ukraine

Tons of gathered on the state Capitol in Salt Lake Metropolis on Saturday to face with Ukraine. (Jackson Grimm, KSL-TV)

Estimated learn time: 2-3 minutes

SALT LAKE CITY — Tons of gathered on the state Capitol Saturday in a rally to face with Ukraine.

“Consider us. Our persons are being killed; youngsters are being killed by the aggression of Russia,” Iryna Kavetska mentioned.

Kavetska, who has lived in Salt Lake County for 13 years, pleaded for the security of her household in Ukraine.

“Just about my complete household is again dwelling. My father, my grandparents and nice grandma, my cousins and uncles — everybody who I really like is there,” she mentioned, including that her household is now below curfew to try to shield their metropolis.

“They’re turning off the lights at 8 p.m. to not give any probabilities of our (opponents) hurting us,” Kavetska mentioned.

A bunch, initially from Moscow, spoke to KSL-TV throughout Saturday’s gathering.

“The very last thing we might do right now was simply sit dwelling and do nothing. We understand by standing right here, we could not change all the pieces, however we need to present our assist — the solidarity that we stand for Ukraine, for what is correct, and what’s simply.”

Nadia Pavlova-Caldwell is a Russian-American. She got here to the rally along with her husband and 4-year-old son.

“Russians need to be free from this president; nobody is pleased with Putin,” she mentioned. “If tens of millions will exit to the road and inform, yell and scream … after all they’ll ship you to the jail, however not the tens of millions. Not sufficient house,” she mentioned.

These attending the rally spoke of the obvious Russian disinformation marketing campaign.

“It is designed to make Ukrainians look violent. It’s propaganda that hides the reality,” Tyler Caldwell mentioned.

Ukrainian-Individuals had a plea for American authorities officers.

“Our important concern is: shut and shield the sky. After that, the Ukrainian military will defend themselves,” Kavetska mentioned. “Being so far-off from household, this rally is how we will help to reunite collectively. We are able to reunite for freedom, for peace in the entire world.”

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Hundreds protest Russia’s invasion of Ukraine during rally at the Utah State Capitol

Members of the Ukrainian neighborhood are hoping for extra help from nations throughout the globe.

(Jordan Miller | The Salt Lake Tribune) Attendees march up the Capitol steps with Ukrainian flags and indicators throughout a rally in help of Ukraine on Saturday, Feb. 26, 2022.

The Utah State Capitol steps have been a sea of blue and yellow on Saturday afternoon as a whole bunch of Utahns, Ukrainians, Russians and others protested Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Whereas cries of “Слава Україні! Героям слава!” rang out from the gang — which interprets to “Glory to Ukraine! Glory to heroes!” — one man stepped in entrance of the rally’s audio system. Wearing a blue-and-yellow striped button down, full with a yellow tie and sun shades, Jan Kubanek crouched down with the miniature tank he’d been carrying and pulled a bottle of lighter fluid from his pocket.

He sprayed the accelerant on the tank and had a small boy within the crowd “do the honors” — by lighting the tank on fireplace.

“I possibly obtained into hassle however it’s price it,” stated Kubanek, who’s from the Czech Republic. “If I can get into hassle this manner and lift consciousness, that’s the least I can do, at the very least right here.”

Supporters held Ukrainian flags, wore sunflower flower crowns and even waved rest room paper printed with Russian president Vladimir Putin’s face whereas they listened to audio system from the Ukrainian neighborhood.

“We can not permit what occurred Forties to occur once more right now,” stated Yulia Holko, a board member of the Utah Ukrainian Affiliation. “Our brothers and sisters on the bottom in Ukraine are preventing for his or her land. They’re very robust on the bottom, they’re pushing the Russian military again on the bottom. … We’re asking the worldwide neighborhood to proceed offering help.”

(Ed Kosmicki | Particular to The Tribune) Justin Godto, whose girlfriend is Ukrainian, waves a Ukrainian flag and holds a poster throughout a rally on the Capitol Feb. 26, 2022.

Holko urged the worldwide neighborhood to ban Russia from SWIFT — which in keeping with CNN, is a safe community connecting monetary establishments across the globe — with the intention to strangle the nation’s financial system.

She additionally known as upon European nations to supply Ukraine with army assets, since though civilian militias are preventing the Russian military, the nation stays susceptible from the air.

“Europe, do you wish to undergo some monetary penalties right now, or do you wish to have Putin at the doorstep tomorrow?” Holko requested. “We should cease him.”

(Jordan Miller | The Salt Lake Tribune) Yulia Holko, left, and Anya Baryshok, proper, communicate to the gang throughout a rally in help of Ukraine on the Capitol on Saturday, Feb. 26, 2022. Holko and Baryshok are each part of the Utah Ukranian Affiliation.

Honorary Consul of Spain Baldomero Lago stated the presidency of the Utah Consular Corps, which represents 30 nations around the globe, wrote a decision in help of Ukraine — condemning Russia’s “illegal” actions and demanding the speedy withdrawal of Russian troops from the sovereign nation.

However Ukrainians are hoping for extra motion, not simply phrases, from the worldwide neighborhood.

“We’re simply actually asking the nationwide neighborhood to not hesitate and to be to be very agency of their actions and to not delay, as a result of each hour that we’re delaying, it’s inflicting Ukraine many, many lives,” Holko stated. “We’re simply asking for the world to be actually robust of their stand in opposition to Putin. Finally, he ought to actually be overthrown — he’s a menace to your complete world and Ukraine is attempting to cease that menace.”

(Jordan Miller | The Salt Lake Tribune) Attendees maintain up Ukrainian flags and indicators on the steps of the Capitol throughout a rally in help of Ukraine on Saturday, Feb. 26, 2022.

(Ed Kosmicki | Particular to The Tribune) Members maintain flags, indicators and sunflowers, the nationwide flower of Ukraine, throughout a rally on the Capitol steps Saturday, Feb. 26 2022. An estimated 500 folks attended the rally in solidarity with Ukraine, which was invaded this week by Russia.

Utah Ukrainian Association organizing rally, resources to stand with Ukraine

A girl holds her child as she will get on a bus leaving Kyiv, Ukraine, Thursday. An area group is organizing assist for Ukraine, giving Utahns and people with family and friends in Ukraine a approach to assist, half a world away. (Emilio Morenatti, Related Press)

Estimated learn time: 3-4 minutes

SALT LAKE CITY — An area group is organizing assist for Ukraine, giving Utahns and people with family and friends in Ukraine a approach to assist, half a world away.

The Utah Ukrainian Affiliation already coordinates humanitarian help to Ukraine and goals to unfold consciousness of Ukrainian tradition within the Beehive State.

Eugene is a part of that Ukrainian group and has lived in the US since coming to Utah in 1995 to go to school. He lives right here now along with his spouse and 2-year-old daughter, and Eugene’s mom and sister reside right here as nicely.

However he defined that the remainder of his household, together with his dad, aunts, uncles and cousins, all reside in Mykolaiv, Ukraine, which is a metropolis close to Odesa and the Black Sea within the southern a part of the nation.

Eugene visits each couple of years and flew on the market final summer time along with his spouse and child. Footage from the journey present a enjoyable time visiting all his relations.

Eugene, right, visits his family in Ukraine.
Eugene, proper, visits his household in Ukraine. (Photograph: Household photograph)

It is a far cry from the photographs and video Eugene has been on-line, displaying bombings, chaos and households fleeing from his house nation.

“It has been arduous simply to look at individuals die for no purpose,” Eugene stated, as tears welled in his eyes. “This mindless warfare is simply so troublesome.”

His dad and prolonged members of the family are OK for now, and Eugene hopes it stays that approach. However being so removed from his unique house has left Eugene feeling helpless.

“Particularly being abroad, the place there’s nothing you are able to do personally to defend your nation aside from look on the information and possibly put up some articles,” he expressed.

Eugene is concerned within the Utah Ukrainian Affiliation, a company that desires to assist bridge that hole by posting assets and respected organizations Utahns can donate to, in addition to internet hosting a rally for individuals to collect.

Eugene and his household plan to attend the Help Motion for Ukraine #StandWithUkraine rally Saturday on the state Capitol.

“Simply to inform the world that we’re for peace and we would like this warfare to cease, and all the things we are able to do in our energy,” Eugene stated. “And it isn’t about one nationality, Ukrainians — it is all individuals coming collectively, Ukrainians and Russians, and simply saying, ‘That is sufficient.'”

Eugene could also be removed from household and the place he as soon as referred to as house, however he will not have to face up for peace by himself.

“I believe meaning quite a bit to me, and to my household, and to our group simply to know that we’re not alone,” Eugene stated. “That there are American individuals and different nationalities who care about Ukrainian struggling, and what they are going via.”

The Help Motion for Ukraine, #StandWithUkraine rally hosted by the Utah Ukrainian Affiliation is deliberate for Saturday on the state Capitol from midday to three p.m.

The Utah Ukrainian Affiliation additionally shared names of locations they contemplate respected to donate* to, with the next checklist:

  • Ukrainian Congress Committee of America (UCCA), for humanitarian help
  • United Assist Ukraine, for donating medical provides to Ukraine’s entrance strains
  • Revived Troopers Ukraine, for therapy of wounded troopers and the supply of hospitals
  • Razom for Ukraine, for tactical medical coaching and emergency response in Ukraine
  • Nova Ukraine, for humanitarian help
  • Sunflower of Peace, for tactical medication
  • Hromada, for youngsters whose dad and mom gave lives within the Russian-Ukrainian warfare in japanese Ukraine

“Donate to charity organizations that immediately assist Ukraine and Ukrainians,” the Utah Ukrainian Affiliation wrote. “All of the listed charities are registered within the USA and are 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organizations. Donations and presents are tax-deductible to the total extent allowable underneath IRS laws.”

* doesn’t guarantee that the cash deposited to the account will likely be utilized for the good thing about the individuals named as beneficiaries. In case you are contemplating a deposit to the account, it’s best to seek the advice of your individual advisers and in any other case proceed at your individual threat.

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