Kyiv, November 19, 2014. Today, Volodymyr Golodnyuk, the father of murdered Maidan protestor Ustym Golodnyuk, was presented with the book “UN Hundred” during the press briefing at Ukraine Crisis Media Center. The book together with the video is the result of the “UN Hundred” project which was the joint effort of the Ukrainian government, private media experts, and Ukrainian business. The objective of the initiative is to explain contemporary events in Ukraine. Notably, the project was earlier presented to world leaders at the United Nations.
The “UN Hundred” name is derived from the one hundred countries that denounced Russia’s annexation of Ukraine in a UN General Assembly resolution, and is a reference to the “Heavenly Hundred,” the approximately 100 protestors killed in anti-government protests this year. Importantly, the “UN Hundred” team travelled to New York in September to personally present their project to world leaders who had convened at the United Nations for the convocation of the 69th General Assembly.
The “UN Hundred” project was a collaborative effort between Ukrainian civil society, business, and state. The Presidential Administration, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, mail delivery business “Nova Poshta”, Ukraine Crisis Media Center (UCMC), and the Permanent Mission of Ukraine to the UN all contributed to the endeavor. The “UN Hundred” book includes quotes from international agreements that Russia violated when the country invaded and annexed the Crimean peninsula from Ukraine in March. The video personally called upon each world head of state to support Ukrainians’ efforts to obtain democracy and freedom from foreign aggression, and was narrated by Yulia Marushevska, a former Maidan activist who narrated the viral video “I am Ukrainian.”
Gennadiy Kurochka, a UCMC Board member, introduced the “UN Hundred” initiative before handing the project’s book to Volodymyr Golodnyuk. The UCMC collaborative team worked many hours in a short period of time to prepare the multimedia project before leaving for the United States in September. However, Gennadiy believes that the effort was well worth it. “We needed to show that our country is not yet occupied,” he said. “We are free, we were free, and we will continue our progress toward freedom.” Notably, President Poroshenko personally gave President Barack Obama a copy of the “UN Hundred” book and video.
Golodnyuk stated that he hopes that Maidan will become a holy place in Ukraine’s historical memory, as a place for Ukrainians to reflect on their lives and on the country’s future. He thinks that Ukrainians still need to demand the change that his son and others on Maidan and in eastern Ukraine have sacrificed for. “Unfortunately, our officials do not yet understand that they must change the way of governing the country,” Golodnyuk stated. “Nothing has changed to the extent that we would like them to change.”