Ukrainians woke up in Thursday’s early hours to deafening explosions across the entire country as Russia, under the command of President Vladimir Putin, launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine.
Major peaceful Ukrainian cities, civilian sites, military installations and airports had been under heavy shelling throughout the day. Ukraine’s Ministry of Healthcare reported 57 civilians dead and 169 injured since the start of the attack. Ukrainian President Volodymir Zelenskiy announced in a speech Thursday night 137 service members were killed and 316 injured.
The world’s reaction was swift, as the U.S., Western Europe, Australia, Japan and South Korea, among others, strongly condemned Russia’s actions. U.S. President Joe Biden declared, “Putin chose this war, and now he and his country will bear the consequences.”
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson called the attack on Ukraine “hideous and barbaric”, saying of Putin: “Now we see him for what he is – a bloodstained aggressor who believes in imperial conquest.”
French President Emmanuel Macron also weighed in, saying he considers Russia’s attacks on Ukraine “a turning point in the history of Europe.” He added, “We will respond to this act of war unwaveringly and with composure, determination and unity.”
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz joined his European counterparts in accusing Putin of a blatant breach of international law. “This February 24 is a terrible day for Ukraine and a gloomy day for Europe,” Scholz stated.
Western Europe and the U.S. vowed their response to Putin’s attack on Ukraine will be harsh and swift.
What can we as responsible citizens of democracy do to help?
As Ukrainians fight for freedom and their country, and Europe and the U.S. deliver deliberate sanctions to counter Putin’s attacks, the international community has the power to aid Ukraine.
Those who want to help can donate to verified organizations, which support Ukrainians and their military’s efforts directly.
The following options support Ukraine’s defense against a Russian invasion:
Medical and logistical support of the Armed Forces of Ukraine: Donate HERE
The National Bank of Ukraine raising funds for Ukraine’s Armed Forces: Donate HERE
Help Ukrainian Army: Donate HERE
Check back for updates and more ways to help Ukraine.
Featured Image: Photo by Diego González on Unsplash
Edited by: James Sutton & Steven London