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Solidarity message from Lithuanian and EU leaders on Vyshyvanka Day: Ukraine is Europe

LITHUANIA, May 19 - Celebrated annually on the third Thursday in May by Ukrainians and their friends around the world, the Vyshyvanka Day has brought together this year dozens of Lithuanian and EU politicians, diplomats, stage performers, and opinion leaders that have responded to Lithuania’s initiative ‘Vyshyvanka: Let the Unity Blossom’. 

The message that Ukraine is an integral part of Europe has been sent together by Prime Minister Ingrida Šimonytė, the Cabinet members, President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen, Vice-President Věra Jourová, President of the European Parliament Roberta Metsola, Ambassador of Ukraine to Lithuania Petro Beshta, Lithuania’s representative at the Eurovision Monika Liu, and many others wearing Vyshyvanka - traditionally embroidered Ukrainian outfit. Launched early May, the initiative has spread across social networks, with users decorating their profiles in Vyshyvanka colours - all this helping to celebrate the unity and solidarity that is badly needed by Ukraine fighting for its freedom. 

At the same time, it is a symbolic sign of support for the Ukrainian communities in Europe, which have been on the rise as a result of Russia’s invasion and the subsequent humanitarian crisis. 

52 thousand Ukrainian refugees have been registered in Lithuania, 40% of them are children. Lithuania is the third country in the EU by the number of refugees per capita. These figures show the goodwill, responsiveness, and the willingness to help those in need by the Lithuanian people, public organizations, and institutions. 

The Vyshyvanka patterns, that oftentimes differ from region to region in Ukraine, speak of the local traditions, and as believed, have magic to mobilize and empower. With unity blossoming, we are proud to support Ukraine, which needs it so much today.