Local elected officials committed to stand beside Ukrainian New Yorkers during an East Village conference Friday.
Anxious locals looked on with solemn concern as Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, Manhattan Borough President Mark Levine, and Councilwoman Carlina Rivera spoke to their constituents on the second floor of the Ukrainian East Village Restaurant located on 140 Second Ave. The setting was less like that of a conference and more akin to a war room meeting thanks to a map of the embattled country projected behind the politicians.
“I am horrified by the images that we just saw and that we see in our homes on television,” Congresswoman Maloney began. “I, like all of you, prayed and hoped for diplomacy. I prayed for peace, but Putin disregarded every attempt to avoid conflict. Often through the bloodiest, most destructive course of action now, or in Europe, by air, land and sea endangering the lives of innocent civilians, disregarding international law and creating a humanitarian crisis in Europe. He bears full responsibility for the bloody consequences we are witnessing. He fired the first shot. I wish I could provide words of comfort but there is no comfort in war.”