With the words “Slava Ukraini!” (Glory to Ukraine), Ambassador Natalia Galibarenko toasted the country’s 25th Anniversary of Independence at a garden party complete with traditional songs, food and vodka (naturally!).
In her speech Ambassador Galibarenko said she was marking the day with “mixed feelings” because of Ukraine’s ongoing conflict. “But we are stronger because we are united against this Russian aggression; because of our international support including Britain; because of our priorities and goals. There is a long road to reform our country so that one day we can become a member of the EU,” she said, joking: “We are ready to fill the space left by Britain!”
Guest of Honour Sir Gerald Howarth MP, Chairman of the APPG for Ukraine, said choosing independence 25 years ago meant Ukraine should be free “to decide who they want to trade with, what alliances they wish to form and who they wish to have as friends.”
PHOTOS: PIERRE DE VILLIERS