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17th Mar 2022

Michael D Higgins calls for unity with Ukraine in heartfelt St Patrick’s Day message

Katy Brennan

“Let us join with all those who stand in solidarity with the people of Ukraine.”

President Michael D Higgins has addressed the nation on St Patrick’s Day with a heartfelt message calling for solidarity with the people of Ukraine.

He said that a dark shadow has been “cast across our world as we witness the unfolding events in Ukraine”.

“I know that the hearts of Irish people and Irish communities across the world go out to all of those who are suffering from this completely unacceptable, immoral and unjustified, invasion and violence to their lives,” he said.

“Our greatest hope for a future of hope and peace springs from the open hearts and doors of those saying ‘tar isteach’.

“Let us, as one human family connected through our shared heritage, join with all those who stand in solidarity with the people of Ukraine as they struggle to protect their right to live in freedom, security and peace.”

He also paid tribute to frontline workers for their efforts throughout the Covid-19 pandemic in Ireland.

“It was inspiring and moving to see how our people sought to respond. These are values that the migrant Patrick could see as serving all humanity.

“Across all of the sectors on which life and health depends they were prepared to risk their own health, and lives, in order to provide the vital services on which our citizens daily rely.”

He went on to offer his sympathies to all those who lost loved ones during the pandemic and could not be with them in their final moments.

Concluding his message, Mr. Higgins asked those celebrating St Patrick’s Day to “take on and make into reality our responsibility to work with fellow citizens across all continents for a better, fairer and more inclusive world”.

He said: “On this St Patrick’s Day let us resolve to recover a space for the discourse of peace in our lives.”