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Ukraine invasion leads to call to suspend north-east twinning link with Belarus

By David Porter

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In light of the invasion of Ukraine by Russian armed forces and the support given by neighbouring Belarus, members of the Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire Green Party have called for Aberdeen City Council to suspend the city's twinning link with Gomel in Belarus.

In a statement the party said: "This move is in response to their reported assistance in the invasion of Ukraine by Russia, and their continuing suppression of their own people.

"In addition, we have also called for additional support from the UK Home Office to assist those fleeing Ukraine, as well as refugees already being accommodated in Aberdeen.

"This support must be given directly to local authorities, and to Ukraine’s neighbours."

Spokesperson Guy Ingerson said: “The Belarusian authorities have suppressed their own people and have now assisted President Putin in his invasion of Ukraine.

"These horrific acts must be opposed in every way possible.

“Although our call is largely symbolic, we must show solidarity with the people of Ukraine, and Belarus, who wish to live in free and democratic societies.

"This is one of the few ways available to us in Aberdeen to show such solidarity."

North East Green MSP Maggie Chapman.
North East Green MSP Maggie Chapman.

Regional MSP Maggie Chapman said: “Our support for the people of Ukraine will take many forms over the course of this conflict.

"I fully support this call by party colleagues locally.

"Condemnation of Putin and Lukashenko must be followed up with stringent sanctions.

“This must be followed by support for both anyone seeking refuge in the UK and for neighbouring nations, such as Moldova, who assist those fleeing this violence."

Speaking in Holyrood yesterday, fellow Green MSP Gillian McKay asked minister Angus Robertson what humanitarian support Scotland was able to provide through neighbouring Moldova and to the Ukraine itself.

He replied: "Conversations have already begun and we are considering where aid may be best used."

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