Legislators to commemorate first anniversary of Ukrainian Invasion on Feb. 28


            STATE HOUSE – Legislators with Ukrainian churches within their districts will be somberly commemorating the first anniversary of the invasion of Ukraine on Tuesday, Feb. 28 at 5 p.m. in the State Library of the State House.

            Organized by Sens. Melissa Murray (D-Dist. 24, Woonsocket, North Smithfield) and Leonidas P. Raptakis (D-Dist. 33, Coventry, West Greenwich), the event will feature a brief speaking program by members of Rhode Island’s Ukrainian community, as well as remarks from Rhode Island elected officials. 

            Joining Senators Murray and Raptakis in holding the event are Sen. Roger A. Picard (D-Dist. 20, Woonsocket, Cumberland) and Reps. Jon D. Brien (I-Dist. 49, Woonsocket, North Smithfield), Robert D. Phillips (D-Dist. 51, Woonsocket, Cumberland) and Stephen M. Casey (D-Dist. 50, Woonsocket).

            “We all felt it was important to recognize Rhode Island’s Ukrainian community as this terrible and illegal invasion rages on and reaches a troubling milestone.  This event will demonstrate Rhode Island’s solidarity with the Ukrainian people and our pledge to support their efforts to liberate themselves from the tyranny and aggression they currently face from Putin and Russia,” said Senator Murray.

            “It is unfortunate that this war has entered its second year without any resolution in sight.  The tragic and horrific loss of life is completely unacceptable and the Russian government and Vladimir Putin are solely to blame for this unprovoked attack on the brave Ukrainian people and their way of life as a sovereign nation.  This event will highlight the Ukrainian community we have in Rhode Island while also showing our commitment to support and help the Ukrainian people in their time of need,” said Senator Raptakis.

            Resolutions in support of Ukraine and the Ukrainian people faced with the illegal invasion by Russia will be introduced in both the House and Senate prior to the event.  Father Barisal Kroner of St. Michael’s Ukrainian Orthodox Church will offer an opening prayer to the Senate session and Father Mykhaylo Dosyak of the St. Michael the Archangel Ukrainian Catholic Church will deliver the opening prayer for the House session. 

Father Dosyak and Ms. Inna Walker, a Ukrainian Rhode Islander, will address the event with brief remarks.