Dear Mayor of Strovolos, Mr. Papacharalambous!
Your Excellencies, Representatives of Diplomatic Missions!
Ladies and Gentlemen!
Today I have a pleasant opportunity to address you on the occasion of the Ukrainian Constitution - the Basic Law of the Ukrainian State.
Today's event is held with the kind support of Mayor of Strovolos and the municipal council of the city, and I am sincerely grateful for your constructive cooperation in this event.
This year Ukraine celebrates the 23rd anniversary of the Constitution.
For the young state, the Basic Law is a symbol of consolidation of the Ukrainian people in the development of a sovereign and independent, democratic, social and legal state. Such an attitude to the Constitution corresponds to the world tendencies of the constitution as the most important legal values of the present times.
Undoubtedly, only a state with a perfect democratic constitution receives stability in the development of its domestic policy and recognition in the international arena.
Although we celebrate 23 years, the history of the creation of our law has been over a thousand years old.
Thousand years ago, our land already had a Law and lived according to it. It was the law of the Great Kyivan Prince Yaroslav - "Ruska Pravda", "Truth of Rus", the law of our glorious ancestor, whose grave is in the temple of St. Sophia of Kyiv.
More than 300 years ago, on April 5, 1710, the Constitution of Pylyp Orlyk, one of the first European constitutions of modern times, was designed by Ukrainian Hetman. The document contained democratic principles of parliamentarism, and the state was called Ukraine. However, the Constitution of Orlyk never came into force, since it was written in conditions of exile.
After the adoption by the Verkhovna Rada of the Ukrainian SSR on August 24, 1991, the Act on the Declaration of Ukraine's Independence and its approval at the All-Ukrainian Referendum, Ukraine was recognized as a sovereign state and a full-fledged subject of international relations.
There was an urgent need for the constitutional consolidation of the foundations of the social and state system of the young independent state, human rights and freedoms of the citizen, the order of organization and functioning of state authorities and local self-government.
Consequently, on June 28, 1996, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine adopted the new Constitution of Ukraine, the first Constitution of an independent Ukrainian state. Deputies worked on a draft of the new Constitution in the session hall for 24 hours continuously. The day of the approval of the Basic Law is a public holiday in Ukraine.
The adoption of the Constitution consolidated the legal foundations of independent Ukraine, its sovereignty and territorial integrity, and determined the division between the branches of power and its foreign policy activities.
This was the most important step in ensuring the human rights and rights of the citizen, which also contributed to further raising the international authority of Ukraine on the world stage.
Nowadays, Ukraine is experiencing the most difficult test of unity and territorial integrity during its independence.
Ukraine continues to implement large-scale reforms, in parallel with the counteraction to Russian aggression, which has already led to the loss of more than 13,000 human lives, about 2 million internally displaced persons, the fall of national GDP (Gross Domestic Product) and the loss of a significant part of production capacities and resources in the temporarily occupied regions of the Donbas and the Crimea.
For Ukraine, success in carrying out reforms is connected with the victory over the current Russian aggression and the restoration of the territorial integrity of our country. There will be no real stability, prosperity and confidence in the future if there is a war on the door.
As for our current difficulties and challenges, I would most want you not to have the impression about Ukrainians as weak, pessimistic, inclined to complaints and discontent. Such an impression is absolutely not true.
On the contrary, Ukrainians are a strong, positive, constructive nation, which is currently opposing to a strong enemy.
We become stronger than external pressure, our army becomes more powerful, as our community, our Church and our language.
Such tests, unfortunately, fell on the fate of our friends - the Cypriots. 45 years ago, they also faced the challenge of having a strong armed neighbor.
That is why the Cypriot people, like no other nation in the world, are well aware of our feelings and anxieties.
In this complicated period for the Republic of Cyprus, we sincerely wish for a quick and just solution to the Cyprus question, peacefully, in favor of both Cypriot communities, and wish the peace and prosperity of the Cypriot people.
We are grateful to the Republic of Cyprus, the Government, the people for the support of our territorial integrity and sovereignty, our European aspirations.
In conclusion of my speech, I want to thank all those present for your interest in Ukraine, which is a clear proof of your sympathy and commitment to Ukraine.
I invite everyone to visit our hospitable country, and as a first step I invite you to visit a photo exhibition about Ukraine and Ukrainians.
Thank you for your attention!