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Happy Independence Day, Ukraine!

13:18 24.08.2019

“You, whose soul has always been free” – these lines were written by Lesia Ukrainka when she was 28 years old.

And today our independent Ukraine turns 28. Several centuries of Ukrainian history are embodied in these few short words by the great poetess. Because you can be free without having freedom, you can remember the taste of freedom behind bars, you can preserve your desire for independence in the harshest conditions. Because your soul is free. And this is the “secret formula” of Ukraine’s strength! We may face the toughest trials and exams, we may endure countless troubles, but we will never surrender our own freedom and will not forget the taste of freedom.

“We will not allow anyone to rule in our native land” …

We are a great and free people of the world!

Today, like 28 years ago, more than 80 percent of Ukrainians support independence. The overwhelming majority of citizens are optimistic about the future for the first time in many years. 74 percent would like to be born and live right here in Ukraine.

This fresh, vibrant sociology is the best Independence Day gift to the country.

What is Ukraine’s strength and greatest resource? Not factories and plants, not subsoil and industrial facilities. People are our main treasure. We, Ukrainians, are Ukraine’s main value. Those who stood and did not break. Those who continue to care and did not give up. Those who kept their faith and strength! Those who will surely build a great, proud European state!

We are a country with a glorious and long history. But Ukraine is not only a “great past.” It’s not just monuments and ancient churches. Ukraine is the present, our daily worries, everyday joys and victories. It is the modern fashionable youth on Khreshchatyk, dawn in the Carpathians, sunny beaches of Odesa, cafes of Lviv with the best coffee in the world … Ukraine is not about what was once. Ukraine is today!

This is the best country in the world with the best people in the world!

Let’s pray for all of us. Let us remember all those who fought for our independence, those who gave their lives for it, for those who are ready to give it up today, for those who courageously defend our freedom right now … Let’s put our hands on our hearts, bow and say thank you. We continue to live here. We will never betray your hopes and your dreams. We remember everything, we will do everything we must. Everything will be alright!

We will give our souls and bodies for our freedom!

Glory to Ukraine! Happy Independence Day!

Yulia Tymoshenko