Ukrainian diplomats and spiritual leaders call for weapons aid

The United States' top Ukrainian Catholic leader and the Ambassador to Ukraine made Tuesday an urgent appeal for weapons and humanitarian aid to help with the crisis.

Ukrainian diplomats and spiritual leaders call for weapons aid

The Most Rev. Borys Gudziak is the metropolitan archbishop for Philadelphia of the Ukrainian Catholic Church USA. He stated at a Washington news conference that there is an urgent need for armored ambulances and medical supplies, as well as food, but also for arms.

Gudziak stated, "What good does it do to feed these children, these mothers, these people in the cities, if they are going to blow out their brains, if there are going to become rubble their apartment buildings?" Gudziak stated that there must be both massive humanitarian and defensive aid.

Ambassador Oksana markarova called for increased sanctions against Moscow, as well as increased aid and diplomatic efforts in order to maintain humanitarian corridors open. She accused Russian forces in genocide.

They are targeting civilians. They are killing pregnant women and children. Markarova stated that they are killing the elderly.

Since the beginning of the war, more than 3,000,000 people fled Ukraine. The third week has now elapsed and thousands of civilians and soldiers have been killed.

Russia increased its bombardment of Kyiv on Tuesday. Civilians fled Mariupol along the humanitarian corridor in the largest evacuation from the city.

Gudziak stated that it was "sad” to see the leadership in the Russian Orthodox Church supporting Vladimir Putin and the war. He also criticised Patriarch Kirill's decision to give a large icon representing the Virgin Mary to a leader from the Russian national guard.

"This is happening at the largest church in Moscow. "The patriarch is giving God's mother to these war criminals," said the archbishop.

Gudziak also heads the Kyiv-based Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church's department of external church relationships. He said that he had met Pope Francis five weeks before the war and asked him to call Putin.

The Vatican has offered mediation between the parties and called for peace, humanitarian corridors and a cease-fire. In an unusual papal gesture that is unrivalled, Francis visited the Russian Embassy in Rome last month in order to "express his concern over the war." Francis hasn't publicly called out Kirill or named Russia.

Gudziak stated that he believes Gudziak has done everything behind the scenes.

"I am convinced that he tried to talk to Putin and that he did not respond to his gestures towards Patriarch Kirill. Gudziak stated that he believes this will change. "I hope the Russian church leadership will be more open."

Gudziak stated that one of the most heartening responses to the invasion was a gathering of people from a variety of faith traditions.

He said, "Orthodox and Catholics, east, west, Protestants and Muslims, Jews, are united in a stand against this war, and are working together for humanitarian aid that helps people stand strong."

Volodymyr Zelenskyy, the Ukrainian president, has asked Putin to meet him personally. This request has not been fulfilled by the Kremlin. Markarova stated that any negotiations in good faith towards ending the war would require a ceasefire.

"We have a Ukrainian saying: "If Russia ceases shooting, the war is over." Markarova stated that if Ukraine ceases shooting today, then our country will vanish. Russia is in complete control of the matter.


 

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