The Parliament has joined the work of the Coordination Council on Child Protection and Safety under the President of Ukraine. This was announced by the Deputy Speaker of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine Olena Kondratiuk during her speech at a meeting of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine.

“By the Decree of President Volodymyr Zelenskyi of 5 July, I was included in this Coordination Council,” she said.

During her speech, Olena Kondratiuk drew the attention of her colleagues who are involved in parliamentary diplomacy, international meetings, and friendship groups to “work together to clearly and consistently seek pressure and publicity on the issue of bringing our Ukrainian children home.”

“This topic is very difficult, but there is good news. Since we last gathered in the session hall, two more children have returned home from russian captivity. A brother and sister returned to their mother, a soldier who spent six months in captivity. Dad was killed defending Mariupol. I thank the Ombudsman’s Office for their tremendous work,” said the Vice Speaker.

According to the Children of War portal, 19,474 children have been abducted by the russian federation. 

“With incredible efforts, with full opposition from russia and inaction of international organisations, we managed to return only 383 children. However, we continue to put diplomatic pressure on the aggressor country, russia, and inactive international organisations,” said Olena Kondratiuk.

The Deputy Chairperson of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine reminded that at the end of June she took part in a conference on human trafficking in Poland. Among its participants were representatives of 13 European parliaments and members of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly.

“We managed to convey the importance and horror of russia’s crimes against Ukrainian children. In a few days, the OSCE PA adopted a resolution condemning the deportation of children at its meeting in Vancouver. I thank everyone who contributed to the preparation of this resolution, in particular, the Verkhovna Rada delegation,” said Olena Kondratiuk.

She also stressed that at the insistence of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, similar resolutions were adopted by the European Parliament, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly, and national European parliaments.

“I am convinced that it is time to reach out to new countries and continents. The BRICS summit in South Africa and the East Asia Summit in Indonesia are ahead. I ask everyone to use their resources to the maximum to ensure that the topic of russian crimes against our children is raised there as well!” Olena Kondratiuk called.

The Vice-Speaker of the Ukrainian Parliament also thanked Nobel laureate Oleksandra Matviichuk, who addressed the President of South Africa from the pages of the Sunday Times and “urged him to take a clear position against the mass abduction of children by russia, and not to receive an international criminal in his country as a guest”.

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