The Vice-President of the European Commission, Margaritis Schinas, congratulated the Ukrainian people on the adoption of the law on media and announced the aid to Ukraine in the amount of 16.5 million euros

On September 1, Margaritis Schinas, Vice-President of the European Commission, a member of the European Commission for Promotion of the European Way of Life, arrived in Ukraine. Together with Oleksandr Tkachenko, Minister of Culture and Information Policy of Ukraine, they visited the exhibition “Ukraine. Crucifixion” at the National Museum of the History of Ukraine in the Second World War, which is dedicated to the events of the russian-Ukrainian war.

“Regretfully, Ukrainian schools, hospitals, cultural institutions and institutions are the biggest victims of this war. And the war is being waged not only on the battlefield. Unfortunately, the aggressor would like to see this war continues in cultural institutions as well. And that is why it is extremely important for the EU to demonstrate not only its own intentions, but also concrete actions regarding the fact that we stand next to Ukraine and the Ukrainian people,” said Margaritis Schinas.

According to the Vice-President of the European Commission, russians are purposefully destroying cultural institutions in Ukraine in order to give this war a cultural dimension. “This is doing absolutely deliberately in order to destabilize and demotivate Ukrainians in this struggle,” he added. 

The European Commissioner also congratulated Ukrainians on the adoption of the law on media in the first reading: “This is an extremely important and practical step. In fact, it is very symbolic that this law on media was adopted as one of the first among those that are a priority for the advancement of Ukraine in the direction to the European Union. I think many people in the EU paid attention to this symbolism”. 

Margaritis Schinas also noted that, what had already been done by the Ukrainian people to preserve memory, Ukrainian identity during the war, was of great importance. “In addition to this, 11 million euros have already been allocated by the EU to help relocate Ukrainian cultural property to safer locations. We will not stop there, another 5.5 million euros will be mobilized to continue this work,” added the representative of the European Commission. 

In turn, the Minister of Culture and Information Policy of Ukraine told journalists about international support for Ukraine in the context of his visits to France, Germany and Poland.

“The main thing that we talked about with colleagues, is the urgent and critically needed assistance to Ukraine in three areas: 

  • protection of cultural heritage, especially on the eve of winter; 

  • assistance to Ukrainian artists, performers, musicians who are in Ukraine. Yes, many of them found refuge in Europe, but 80% continue to work in theaters, write books, music, and paint in Ukraine. And we currently do not have the opportunity to issue grants through the Ukrainian Cultural Foundation, so we count on support; 

  • support for Ukrainian independent media, because Ukrainian journalists work to tell the world the truth about the war in Ukraine. The advertising market in Ukraine has collapsed, the support of our media people is extremely important for us. 

I really hope that our joint work will lead to concrete steps in concrete directions that the Ukrainian people would feel here and today,” noted Oleksandr Tkachenko. 

 In general, the visit of an official of this level demonstrates the unchanging support of the European Union for Ukraine in the conditions of full-scale russian aggression and our country’s path to the EU membership. Margaritis Schinas assured that the European Commission would help Ukraine in humanitarian matters, in particular, in the issue of inscription of the Historical Center of Odesa on the UNESCO’s World Heritage List.

“We never forget in the European Union that Ukraine is the only country in Europe where people were killed for simply raising the European flag. It happened 8 years ago. We will not forget it, we will honor it, we will provide all kinds of support to Ukraine. We really hope, it’s a fact, that Ukraine will officially become a member of the EU very soon. And as for my area of responsibility, I think that Ukraine is already part of the EU,” said the Vice-President of the European Commission. 

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