April 22, 2024

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The flag of Ukraine was drawn by activists in London in front of the Russian embassy


LONDON — Ben Stewart arrived outside the Russian embassy early Thursday morning with a horde of volunteers, four wheelbarrows and 70 gallons of blue and yellow paint, ready to send a letter to Russian President Vladimir Putin on the anniversary of the invasion of Ukraine.

“I just thought, ‘If you get enough paint out there, cars can create science,'” Stewart, co-founder of the activist group Lead By Donkeys, told The Washington Post.

Sure enough, volunteers dumped paint on the road, and London Traffic did the rest, spreading it out to make a giant Ukrainian flag right in front of the embassy.

This week, countries around the world celebrate one year since the Russian war. Paris The Eiffel Tower is lit up. in Wellington, New Zealand, People threw sunflowers to the water. British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, who hosted Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, will observe a minute’s silence on Friday.

But the flag stunt may be Britain’s most memorable.

“Tomorrow is the first anniversary of Putin’s imperialist conquest of Ukraine, an independent country and a people with every right to self-determination. A huge Ukrainian flag outside his embassy in London will remind him of that.” Social media. The tweet quickly went viral.

“Like so many people, we have been deeply touched by the resilience and determination of the Ukrainian people,” Stewart, 48, said. “Obviously there are many shows of solidarity. It is right that Joe Biden and Rishi Sunak go to Kiev, but there is so much support from the people and you rarely see examples.” On civil solidarity, and we wanted to show that London and Britain stand by Ukraine.

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Britain would like to see itself playing a leading role in supporting Ukraine, and its military assistance is second only to contributions from the United States.

However, Britain has done far less than many European countries when it comes to taking in Ukrainian refugees. The government, headed by then Prime Minister Boris Johnson, launched a DIY program that required Britons to identify individual refugees they wanted to sponsor. Some Brits were willing hosts – one man interviewed by The Post even flew to the Ukrainian border with Cadbury pubs. But there have been reports of an increase in evictions homelessness.

The British Refugee Choice Program had one Briton travel to Poland with Cadbury Pubs

On the political front, support for Ukraine’s support in the conflict has remained strong, with lawmakers on all sides displaying a kind of unity not often seen in the topsy-turvy post-Brexit years.

Bronwyn Maddox, director of Chatham House, a London think tank, said: “Politicians want to continue to support Ukraine out of principle, out of recognition of national feeling, and in the midst of Brexit and its aftermath, this is something Britain wants to do and can do well, as part of the European contribution.” and Western, at a somewhat confused and unsettling point in British politics.”

Polls show British people’s support for Ukraine has remained strong, even as many people believe the war has contributed to the cost of living crisis here. Perhaps that sentiment has not been tested as much as it could, with natural gas prices dropping in recent weeks.

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The stunt outside the embassy on Thursday wasn’t without its hiccups, Stewart said. Four volunteers were on Team Blue Paint. Arrested by the London Metropolitan Police for obstructing traffic.

“But luckily, people from the yellow paint team ran in and helped with the blue paint,” Stewart said. “And after five minutes of flipping the paint, we had the Ukrainian flag.”

Cars were, at first, reluctant to drive over the paint, Stewart said, even as protesters were holding up signs reading: “Ukraine Solidarity Protest – Drive Slow – Paint Washable”.

But after a few cars had passed, others followed.

The War in Ukraine: What You Need to Know

Last: Marking the one-year anniversary of Russia’s invasion, the United Nations General Assembly is set to vote this week on a resolution calling for Russia to leave Ukraine. President Biden and G7 leaders are also scheduled to meet with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Friday to coordinate efforts to support Ukraine. Read all of our latest Russia and Ukraine coverage here.

Fighting: Nearly a year into the war has changed Russia’s inventory “drastically”, and a recent analysis estimates that Moscow has lost nearly half of its main battle tanks. But the Ukrainians are preparing for the next phase of the fighting – a long-awaited Russian offensive, and they will soon be training on real Leopard 2A6 tanks, although the West still lacks contributions. Here’s who sends what to Ukraine and explained the main weapons.

war year: Russian President Vladimir Putin’s war has caused a historic mass exodus of his people, as data shows that at least 500,000, and perhaps nearly a million, have left Russia since the beginning of the conflict in Ukraine. Despite this and the widespread sanctions, Russia’s economy has remained more resilient than many expected. However, there are signs that Putin’s luck is running out.

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the pictures: The Washington Post photographers have been on the ground since the start of the war – here are some of their most powerful work.

How you can help: Here are ways that those in the United States can support the Ukrainian people as well as what people around the world are donating.

Read our full coverage of The war of Russia and Ukraine. Are you on Telegram? Subscribe to our channel For updates and exclusive videos.