Today, 14 October, Ukrainians celebrate the Day of Defenders and Defendresses of Ukraine.

The holiday was established to honour the courage and bravery shown by Ukrainian soldiers in defending the independence of Ukraine, which became especially important during the aggression of the Russian Federation against Ukraine.

14 October was chosen to celebrate the Day of Defenders and Defendresses of Ukraine as it is on this day that the Orthodox feast of the Intercession of the Theotokos is marked and the Day of the Ukrainian Cossacks was established in 1999.

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky greeted the defenders and defendresses of the Motherland.

“In these difficult years for Ukraine, you daily perform the feat, defending the native land from the Russian aggressor with weapons in your hands. On behalf of the Ukrainian people, I thank all the defenders and defendresses of Ukraine for conscientious performance of military, service and civilian duty, courage, heroism, and self-sacrifice,” the congratulations read.

The Head of State added that the national holiday encapsulated the deep historical traditions of Ukrainians.

“We bow low to the blessed memory of the fallen and commemorate all those who died in different times of national history in the struggle for freedom and independence of the Ukrainian state. Our faith, truth, and victory as symbols of the Intercession of the Theotokos have always helped us to withstand the fight against enemies and continue to inspire us to victory… Glory to defenders and defendresses of Ukraine!” the President added.

On the eve of the holiday, he also signed a decree appointing Aliona Verbytska as President’s adviser and commissioner for the rights of defenders of Ukraine.

Bohdan Marusyak

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