Ukraine Invasion: Calderdale leader offers support to Ukrainian communities in the borough

The leader of Calderdale Council has offered his support to Ukrainian people living in Halifax.

By Ian Hirst
Friday, 25th February 2022, 11:41 am

Fresh strikes have hit Kyiv amid warnings Russian forces are closing in on the capital as Nato allies prepare to determine the West’s next steps against the Kremlin.

The leader of Calderdale Council Councillor Tim Swift said: "There are many residents in Calderdale who have family and friends in Ukraine, who will be concerned and fearful about what the future holds.

"They and their families have my support and my solidarity and that of my colleagues at this difficult time."

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Calderdale Council leader Tim Swift

Halifax MP Holly Lynch has also spoken about the situation posting on social media: "Absolutely desperate scenes in Ukraine, which cannot go unchallenged. Thinking of all those there, having to no choice but to take a stand against tyranny. The international community stands with you."

The Ukrainian foreign minister, Dmytro Kuleba, said in a tweet just before 4am on Friday that “horrific rocket strikes” hit Kyiv.

Leaders of the 30 Nato allied nations will meet on Friday, US President Joe Biden confirmed, as they come under pressure to go even further than sanctions already announced to hit the Kremlin after what Boris Johnson described as a “dark day in the history of our continent”.

Russian forces launched a full-scale invasion in the early hours of Thursday. By the end of the day, the Ukrainian government said 137 civilians and military personnel had been killed.

However, the UK’s Ministry of Defence (MoD) said it is “unlikely” Russia achieved its planned objectives for the first day of its military action in Ukraine, crediting “fierce resistance” from the Ukrainian forces.

The MoD said in a statement just after 1am: “The Ukrainian Armed Forces have reportedly halted Russia’s advance towards Chernihiv. Fighting probably continues on the outskirts of the city.

“It is unlikely that Russia has achieved its planned Day 1 military objectives. Ukrainian forces have presented fierce resistance across all axes of Russia’s advance.”

Earlier, the country’s President Volodymyr Zelensky ordered a full military mobilisation lasting 90 days.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced the “largest and most severe” package of sanctions Russia has ever faced to punish Mr Putin, whom he labelled a “blood-stained aggressor”.

Among the new UK sanctions introduced were measures to hit five further oligarchs, including the Russian president’s former son-in-law, and to target more than 100 businesses and individuals.

Mr Johnson said he was sanctioning “all the major manufacturers that support Putin’s war machine”, will ban Aeroflot from touching down planes in the UK and will freeze the assets of all major Russian banks, including immediately against VTB.

A package of further EU sanctions was announced by European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen early on Friday following a special meeting of the EU Council.