Munich: Kiev Mayor Vitali Klitschko speaks in the city council – Munich

In an impressive video address, Vitali Klitschko, Mayor of the Ukrainian capital Kyiv, addressed the Munich city council. “Every morning before I get up, before I open my eyes, I think this is all a nightmare,” he said in his speech. Every day he sees dead civilians, the situation on site is “dramatic”. He said of several neighboring cities of Kyiv: “There are no more cities.” It is not known how many people died. But one thing is certain: “People get really angry.”

Klitschko described the Russian attack on his country as genocide. “This is genocide,” said the 50-year-old former professional boxer. “They destroy the civilian population, they destroy our country.” His city was being bombarded with rockets that “killed every human life within a radius of 500 meters,” said Klitschko. This is not an attack on the military, but on the population. He couldn’t say how many Ukrainians had died so far: “We can’t count the bodies.”

The summary of the Klitschko speech in the video

Klitschko thanked Germany and Kiev’s partner city Munich several times for their support. The thanks go “from the bottom of my heart,” he said: “It’s very, very important for us.” No one in Ukraine thought they would have to put on military uniforms or pick up machine guns again. He continued: “We are Europeans, with our history, with our identity.”

The mayor also emphasized: “We’re not just fighting for our city, we’re not fighting for our country. (…) Today we’re fighting for values, for principles that Russia broke.” And further: “We are also fighting for you, for every German”: Because you don’t know what plans Russia has. He demanded a clear stance from Germany: one cannot support Ukraine on the one hand and be linked to Russia at the same time. The country should stop economic relations with Russia – even if that is difficult. “Either you are on the side of Ukraine or on the side of the aggressor,” said Klitschko. “You can’t be half-pregnant.”

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Mayor Dieter Reiter (SPD) said afterwards that he was “extremely angry” at the Russian ruler, who “causes this suffering”. He emphasized that Ukraine can rely “one hundred percent” on the solidarity of the people in Munich: “Thousands of Munich residents have opened their apartments and taken in people from Ukraine,” said Reiter.

The almost hour-long speech by the 50-year-old ex-professional boxer took place right at the beginning of the city council’s general assembly in the Showpalast in Fröttmaning, where the committee is currently holding its meetings. The city councilors then commemorated the victims of the war in a minute’s silence.

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