Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has said the de-occupation of Crimea is a common task for the world community, which is uniting at the Crimean Platform site.
"Today is the Day of Resistance to the Occupation of Crimea. For the first time in years after the annexation of the peninsula, Ukraine is taking concrete steps to return the occupied territory," Zelensky wrote on Twitter on February 26, 2021.
Read alsoUkraine continues to consolidate int'l efforts to achieve complete de-occupation of Crimea, Sevastopol – MFAAccording to the president, de-occupation of Crimea is a common task for the global community, which is uniting at the Crimean Platform site.
"Crimea is Ukraine!" he tweeted.
As reported by the presidential press service, Zelensky also signed a decree on measures aimed at de-occupation and reintegration of the Crimean peninsula.
He instructed the government to organize and launch the Crimean Platform, as well as to implement measures to develop and support the Crimean Tatar language, culture, and protect the rights of residents of the temporarily occupied Crimea.
Read alsoU.S. welcomes Ukraine's initiative on Crimean Platform – BlinkenThe president said seven years ago, on February 26, 2014, a massive rally in support of the territorial integrity of Ukraine took place in the Ukrainian city of Simferopol, where tens of thousands of Crimeans rallied. In memory of their civic position and courage, February 26 was established as Day of Resistance to the Occupation of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol.
"We will never forget the events of seven years ago. Crimea was Ukraine's heart: sunny, kind, and bright. Seven years ago, our heart was ripped out. We will never forget who did it, and we will never forget who allowed this to be done. Some people tried to convince us they had ripped out our heart legally and politely, and now, clutching it in their hands, they sincerely wonder why Ukraine is offended, why it doesn't want to have good relations, why there's so much hatred, why Ukraine cannot forget and forgive," Zelensky said.
So that Ukraine is able to "smile" happily and sincerely again, its heart must be returned, the peninsula must be returned, the president stressed.
"Unfortunately, this hasn't happened yet, but nobody will be able to annex our memory – the memory that Crimea remains occupied, that someone brazenly wiped their boots with security guarantees and international law," Zelensky added.
Crimean Platform to end Russian occupation of the peninsula
On September 23, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, who participated in the general debate of the 75th session of the UN General Assembly, called on partners to join an international platform for the end of the Russian occupation of Crimea.
In December, Zelensky announced that the creation of the Crimean platform had already been backed by powers on both sides of the Atlantic.
Read alsoRussia's occupation, increasing militarization of Crimea threatening world's common security – BlinkenThe platform will operate at several levels. The first, the highest one, is the political level, which will involve heads of state and government. The second level is that of top diplomats and defense chiefs, the third is the inter-parliamentary level, and the fourth will involve non-governmental experts. An expert network will be created to enhance the effectiveness of government action, as well as engaging additional intellectual resources in the platform's work.
The Crimean Platform Summit is scheduled for August 23, 2021.