EDMONTON – Alberta Premier Notley has issued the following statement on Holodomor Memorial Day:
“Holodomor is a combination of two Ukrainian words: Holod, meaning hunger, and moryty, meaning a slow, cruel death. That is exactly what Ukrainians suffered during this deliberate starvation of an entire people.
“In 1932, Soviet police removed all food from Ukraine and sealed its borders. Over two years, 10 million people died, up to 25,000 a day. Then Ukraine’s religious, artistic, intellectual and political leaders were arrested, deported or executed.
“For decades, the outside world didn’t know. Mentioning Holodomor was a crime subject to imprisonment, exile or execution. After the Soviet Union fell in 1991, classified documents revealed the horror to the world. Eyewitness accounts were gathered, some from survivors living in Edmonton.
“More than 300,000 Albertans are of Ukrainian heritage. They have helped build our province from the ground up. Some are survivors of the Holodomor, or are the descendants of those who suffered.
“On the fourth Saturday every November, Alberta joins Holodomor survivors and all people of Ukrainian heritage in remembrance. We do more than remember. We stand vigilant against racism, violence, hatred and persecution. And we promote the acceptance of all people and cultures, so everyone can live in peace and safety.
“On this 10th anniversary of Alberta’s Ukrainian Famine and Genocide (Holodomor) Memorial Act, I encourage everyone to honour the victims of the Holodomor. May we stand forever united against such a tragedy ever happening again.”