Fingal Council’s solidarity with Ukraine as flag raised at County Hall

by Rose Barrett
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Rose Barrett

In a gesture of solidarity with the people of Ukraine, the Ukrainian national flag was raised on Monday last at County Hall, Swords, by the Mayor of Fingal, Cllr Seána O Rodaigh. Joining the Mayor and officals was the Ukrainian ambassador to Ireland, Her Excellency Ms Larysa Gerasko.

The ceremony was also attended by members of the Ukrainian community in Fingal who had earlier been hosted by the Mayor at a special reception in The Atrium at County Hall.  

Fingal councillors and Oireachtas members stood in solidarity with the gathering as the flag of Ukraine was raised and the Ukrainian national anthem was sung by those present.

Expressing her support and sadness for the people of Ukraine, the Mayor stated: “Many relationships have been fostered today and many of us listened and we will continue to do so. We have a full council meeting this evening and we will be discussing the situation then.

A delegation of Ukrainian community members visited Swords County Hall this evening to speak with local Fingal Councillors and raise their national flag. (Pictured) Julia Varyan weeps with her mother and father Maria and Ivan Matvichuk Pic Conor Healy/Coalesce

“I would like to commend those here who represent us in Dáil Éireann for what you are doing and I ask you to continue to do anything you can do to support the Ukrainian people.”

Ambassador Gerasko responded: “Ukrainians are facing a dark and terrible time, parts of country are destroyed including hundreds of schools and hospitals in this unjustified and terrible war. We need your support and we are grateful to the government of Ireland for their huge support and solidarity and to the Irish nation for the many messages of support and offers of accommodation and humanitarian aid.”

There was a discussion on the situation in Ukraine at the March monthly meeting of the council where four motions relating to the Russian invasion were unanimously passed.

The motions were: “That this Council unreservedly condemns, in the strongest possible terms, Russia’s totally unprovoked and despicable attack on the free and sovereign nation of Ukraine and call on Russia to immediately withdraw and make reparations.” – proposed by Cllrs Darragh Butler, Brigid Manton, Tom Kitt, Tony Murphy, Brian Dennehy, Joe Newman, Robert O’Donoghue, Grainne Maguire, Howard Mahony, Pamela Conroy, Daniel Whooley, JK Onwumereh, Ian Carey and Tania Doyle.

“That Fingal County Council calls on the government to ensure sanctions are imposed to end Russian aggression against the Ukraine and that this council calls for the expulsion of the Russian Ambassador. The Irish Government needs to play its part in forcing a complete withdrawal of Russian military forces from Ukraine.  Fingal Co Co stands in solidarity with the people of Ukraine” – proposed by Cllr Anne Graves.

 “That this Council condemns the use of violence to achieve political aims, calls on Russia to withdraw  from all Ukrainian territory and make full reparation to Ukraine.” – proposed by Cllrs Tom O’Leary, Anthony Lavin, Aoibhinn Tormey, Siobhan Shovlin, Punam Rane and Ted Leddy.

A delegation of Ukrainian community members visited Swords County Hall this evening to speak with local Fingal Councillors and raise their national flag. Pictured was Ukraine Ambassador to Ireland, Gerasko Larysa and Mayor of Fingal Cllr Seána Ó Rodaigh. Pic Conor Healy/Coalesce

 “This council calls on the Chief Executive and her team to immediately carry out an audit of buildings and locations, sites suitable for rapid build homes to cater for the humanitarian crisis as a result of the war and atrocities in Ukraine, so that Fingal can play its part in accommodating some of the projected 100,000 Ukrainian Refugee families expected to locate in Ireland” – proposed by Cllrs Tom O’Leary, Punam Rane, Aoibhinn Tormey, Siobhan Shovlin and Anthony Lavin 

The Ukrainian flag was also raised at the council’s offices in Blanchardstown which were lit up in yellow and blue along with Swords Castle in solidary with Ukraine and its people. 

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