Statsminister Mette Frederiksens tale ved arrangement på Københavns Rådhus den 24. februar 2023

Dansk og ukrainsk flag i rådhussalen i Københavns Rådhus
Foto: Københavns Kommune

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On your way! Be brave and true!

Should the road seem endless.

Walk where God is near and you

Never can be friendless.

So goes one of our most cherished Danish songs.

In Danish: ”Altid frejdig når du går.”

It was written more than 150 years ago.

And the Danish freedom fighters sung it during World War II.

Today, you Ukrainians give new meaning to those words.

You are at war. Against a brutal and cruel aggressor.

You are fighting not only for your own country. But for free nations all over the world.

Defending the values that we all believe in. Freedom. Democracy. Human rights. The right of any nation to choose its own future.

You – and your incredible President Zelenskyy – show us what true bravery is.

And I can assure you. You will never be friendless.

* * *

Dear Ukrainians.

One year ago, your lives changed. In a split second.

Putin and Russia launched a full-scale invasion of your country.

You have been forced to leave your homes. Your families and loved ones. And your beloved home country.

That has to be one of the hardest things to do as a human being.

The people of Ukraine show no weakness.

Only strength. Determination.

For that, you have our utmost respect.

Since the beginning of the war, more than 30.000 Ukrainians have come to Denmark.

On behalf of the Danish people: Thank you for your trust in us.

So many Danes have opened their homes and their hearts to you.

So many companies have tried to help. So many different organisations. Tried to give you back a little of the everyday life you have lost.

A home. A meal. A job. A school. A football match. A friendship.

I know you have family and friends at home. And that your dream is to go home to them.

But until that day, you are more than welcome in Denmark.

* * *

A few weeks ago, the Danish Foreign Minister, the Defence Minister and I visited Mykolaiv.

Back in March 2022, President Zelenskyy asked Denmark if we would help Ukraine rebuild Mykolaiv.

The answer was yes.

What else could it be?

We are family. Your fight is our fight.

That is why we support you in every way we can.

With weapons. Humanitarian aid. Medicine. Food. Shelter. 

Putin thought he could divide us. But he was wrong.

We are more united than ever. And we will not let you down.

I am certain. Once the war is over. A new and stronger Ukraine will arise.

Peace will be restored.

Ukraine will be free.

Slava Ukraini!