With the inexplicable war in the Ukraine dominating world news, the Greek Community of Melbourne (GCM) reached out to the vibrant Greek Community in the Ukraine by penning a letter of solidarity to the President of the Greek Society “Enotita” of Kiev, Ms Nina Paskal.
In a quick-fire reply to the GCM’s letter, a thankful Ms Paskal wrote back to the GCM thanking it for its support and seeking assistance in broadcasting the travails of not only her Greek brethren but the whole of the resisting Ukrainian people.
Ms Paskal noted that the community had suffered injuries and that she was bunkered in Kiev with her family.
Ms Paskal did introduce the GCM to her Vice President Mr Anton Savidis who in turn spent 30 minutes on a telephone call with the GCM President.
In amongst other things, Mr Papastergiadis once again reiterated the GCM’s support to which Mr Savidis thanked him noting that the GCM was amongst the first to contact them. He then said:
• That the most urgent need was military. He noted that both the Ukrainian military and the general population needed military equipment.
• He explained that Ukrainian citizens are prepared to fight but need arms to to defend themselves.
• He said that Ukrainians will never surrender
• He said that they were confident that they will defeat the Russian aggressors
• Mr Savidis noted that he was in Kiev helping prepare the community for resistance whilst his heavily pregnant wife had driven to Western Ukraine
• Both Mr Savidis and Ms Paskal again thanked the GCM and asked for its assistance in broadcasting their plight in the short term
• Mr Savidis also told Mr Papastergiadis that once this was all over, there would be need for financial support as many of the Greek community’s homes had been damaged in the early onslaught.
Mr Savidis, a cultural events producer was working on maintaining supply lines for the resistance. He was moved by the GCM’s support and wanted to see peace return to look to cultural exchange with the Greeks of Melbourne.
The Greek Community of Melbourne will retain contact with the Greek Society of Kiev retaining its offer of support for whenever and however it is needed.