Kyiv Pride boss tells global LGBT+ community ‘we need you’ after Russia invades Ukraine
The executive director of Kyiv Pride has urged the international LGBT+ community to help Ukraine after Russia declared war.
Russian president Vladimir Putin launched a “military operation” in Ukraine on Thursday morning (24 February), met with widespread shock and condemnation across the world.
Explosions could reportedly be heard across the country, while Ukraine’s foreign minister warned that a “full-scale invasion” had begun.
Speaking with GlitterBeam, a global LGBT+ radio station, director of Kyiv Pride Lenny Emson said the situation in Ukraine is one of “panic” and “anxiety”, urging listeners to provide “international political support”.
In an interview with Eugenio Ceriello from a safe location, Emson said: “This is not an easy situation to be in.
“Of course, there is some anxiety, there is some panic, we’re all people, but first of all, we’re angry and we’re ready to fight. We want this to end. We want peace.”
If you have missed our interview with the Director of @KyivPride you can listen again at this link👇https://t.co/KADEoszTu6#Ukraine #Ukraina #UkraineRussie #UkraineRussiaCrisis #UkraineRussiaConflict #UkraineRussia #UkraineCrisis #RussiaUkraineConflict #Russia #RussiaUkraine
— GlitterBeam Radio (@GlitterBeamUK) February 24, 2022
Emson explained the importance of tackling Russian propaganda and “fake news” in keeping the people of Ukraine safe.
He told GlitterBeam: “Some people are panicking, and some people are anxious. We cannot avoid it… but it’s how we manage this panic, how we manage this anxiety. This is what is important in my task as director of the biggest Pride organisations in Ukraine.
“My task as an LGBTQI activist is to stay with my community and to help them to stay calm, to keep going and to keep fighting.
“Not listening to any propaganda sources, because today, we have fake news coming from Russia, fake news about Ukraine falling down, and Russia is winning in this war, which is really provoking panic.”
“Do not believe in the information you did not fact check.”
To all our supporters in the world: Call on your governments to stand up and to take action against the war in Ukraine! We need to stop it now, we need to show how powerful we are all together, and Putin will stand no chance!
— KyivPride (@KyivPride) February 24, 2022
Emson added that while there has been international support for the LGBT+ community in Ukraine, the country is now “relying on your help”.