President of Ukraine

Speeches

President's New Year address

31 December 2016 - 23:55

There are more grounds for optimism than a year ago. It still will not be easy, but the worst in the economy is already behind. The main task for myself is to maintain proper political conditions for the development of the country. And, of course, to enhance our defense capacity, international support of Ukraine and ensure rapprochement with the EU and NATO.

It is Euromaidan, Revolution of Dignity and Heavenly Hundred who have determined the European vector of Ukraine irreversibly. We are moving in the right direction and towards right goals. But the path towards stars of Europe, just as anyone else, goes through the thorns - рer aspera ad astra. That is why it is so difficult on the road. That is why mistakes in solving complicated problems are inevitable.

I would like to use this opportunity to sincerely congratulate Donald Trump on having been elected President of the United States of America and friendly American people on a really democratic expression. I think this a symbol of real democracy when nobody knows what would be the results of the elections until the very last moment of counting the votes. This a true democracy which has been professed and promoted by our reliable strategic American partners and friends.

So, the Babyn Yar tragedy is a warning to the entire mankind: any regime that sets human rights and freedoms at naught threatens humanity. Our moral duty is to prevent the repeat of crimes against humankind and humanity.

“Struggle for the restoration of Ukraine’s territorial integrity within the borders of 1991 was, is and will be the main priority for me,” the President said.

Freedom, democracy, free speech, basic human rights – these are the invaluable assets, not commodities. And because they are under threat today – conviction and political leadership are more needed now than at any point in the newest history. What you fight for – is what you are. So, let’s stand our ground! Let’s stick to freedom and human rights! Let’s stand tall in the face of those who challenge our values – and not make deals with them.