Dame Helen Mirren has led a vigil marking the one-year anniversary of Russia’s brutal invasion of Ukraine.
Deranged despot Vladimir Putin‘s Russian army invaded Ukraine on February 24, 2022, starting a war in Europe that has already claimed hundreds of thousands of lives and forced millions to flee their homes.
Ukraine’s allies across the world marked the eve of the anniversary in a show of strength against Moscow’s illegal invasion, which has led to copious allegations of war crimes by Russian soldiers.
On Thursday evening the United Nations voted overwhelmingly to demand Russia ‘immediately’ and ‘unconditionally’ withdraw its troops from Ukraine and called for a ‘just and lasting’ peace.
In London, Oscar-winning actress Mirren recited a Ukrainian poem as she addressed the crowds in Trafalgar Square today.
She read out the English translation of Take Only What Is Most Important by Serhiy Zhadan.
The poem included the line: ‘You will not return and friends will never come back.’
At the end of the recitation, Mirren added: ‘But I think you will be back.’
She said: ‘Peace for Ukraine, democracy for Ukraine and freedom for Ukraine.’
At the same vigil, US ambassador Jane Hartley told the crowd that the event is a reminder the US and the UK will ‘always stand by our friends in Ukraine’.