Mr Speaker, dear Ruslan! Distinguished speakers of parliaments, Your Excellencies, dear colleagues, ladies and gentlemen!
We are here today to remember the victims of genocide. 90 years ago, the soviet regime starved Ukrainians to death. My country, Poland, was among the first to recognise the Holodomor as genocide. Since then, many countries have joined us, and I hope more will. I encourage them to do so at the NATO Parliamentary Assembly because history matters, truth matters and justice matters. We remember the victims of the Holodomor, and it is horrifying to see the return of the russian evil that began 90 years ago. And again, it is present today – the aggression against which Ukraine is so bravely defending itself.
Today, Ukrainians are also fighting for our democracy and our freedom. For this fight, we will always be grateful.
I would also like to pay my respects, as my colleagues have already done, to the fallen Heroes of Ukraine, to all the men and women in uniform who are fighting against russian aggression. Glory to Ukraine! Glory to the Heroes!
Colleagues, every time we forget about the crimes of the past, we open the way to more crimes and genocides. The soviet Holodomor and the russian terror remind us how bloody evil returns if it is not stopped and punished. What stalin tried to do to Ukrainians and failed, putin is trying again today, and we cannot allow him to succeed. As President of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly, I want to make it clear that if we do not mobilise enough resources to help Ukraine fight back today, NATO Allies will pay a much higher price tomorrow. russia is an imperialist rogue state and it is already waging a global hybrid war against NATO, it is attacking Europe. We have to wake up to this reality. There can be no delay in this.
Colleagues, russia thought it could destroy Ukraine as an independent state. It failed, and now it is our responsibility to help Ukraine not only withstand, but also thrive as a country. The NATO Parliamentary Assembly and Poland are ready to renew our commitment to help Ukraine on its path to prosperity. We must offer our full support to the President Zelenskyi's Peace Formula and reaffirm that nothing can be decided about Ukraine without Ukraine. We must increase and accelerate military support. This year we should have learnt the lessons and the cost of delivering too little too late. We must also provide more funding for Ukraine's reconstruction. This year we have to start these measures and rebuild the economy and support innovation. Ukrainians have already proved how innovative they are and, of course, the financial price is high, but russia, putin and his supporters must pay for this. I encourage my colleagues in the Parliamentary Assembly to create a legal framework to allow the use of frozen russian assets as soon as possible.
And let us also remember what putin fears most – the success of Ukraine as a democracy. We have to work together to ensure that democracy is strong, that the army is strong, that the economy is strong, that democracy is strong, and that Ukraine is victorious.
Dear colleagues! Those who committed the Holodomor have not been punished, and russia's crimes cannot go unpunished. From the first day, we have supported the creation of a special tribunal to hold russia accountable for its war of aggression and all its crimes, crimes against humanity, crimes against the people and genocide, including the horrific deportation of Ukrainian children, as well as (attacks) on critical infrastructure, the environment, and nuclear facilities. And russia under the current regime is a terrorist country. By attacking the grain infrastructure, the russian regime, just like the soviet regime, is using hunger as a weapon and must be brought to justice, and Ukraine deserves justice.
Dear colleagues, recent polls by NDI Ukraine have shown that 89 per cent of Ukrainians would like to join NATO. As President of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly, I am personally committed to helping you to do so.
I know that the road to NATO is difficult and that there are 227 days until the NATO Summit in Washington. There are 227 days left and we have to do everything we can in that time. And I promise you that I will mobilise the NATO Parliamentary Assembly and redouble our efforts to support Ukraine's membership in NATO.
Ukraine is our ally. Ukraine should take its place in the NATO family. Friends, allies! Our support for Ukraine cannot end, democracy and freedom will prevail, justice will prevail, Ukraine will win! Thank you. Glory to Ukraine!
And the last thing I want to say. I really like to see these two flags here. And the third, would also fit here.