Glasgow announces twinning with Ukraine city to coincide with second anniversary of invasion

Glasgow has twinned with the Ukrainian city of Mykolaiv in a show of solidarity and support.
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The agreement, declared publicly today, 24 February, coincides with the second anniversary of the invasion. The Memorandum of Understanding was signed by the Lord Provost Jacqueline McLaren, the Leader of Glasgow City Council Susan Aitken and Mykolaiv's City Mayor Oleksandr Syenkevych during a virtual ceremony held on Tuesday 6 February. Witnessed in Glasgow by the Ukrainian Consul General Andrii Kuslii and representatives from The Association of Ukrainians in Great Britain (AUGB).

It follows a motion passed at Full Council on 7 December 2023 to twin with Ukraine. Mykolaiv was  chosen, following advice from representatives of the AUGB, who  considered it a 'good fit' as a twinning partner due to its similarities with Glasgow.

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Both cities share a rich industrial heritage as ship builders. Mykolaiv originally founded in 1788 as a Naval base, is nestled on the Southern Buh River close to the Black Sea. 

It's also a city close to the front line and adjacent to the besieged city of Kherson. Because of that  proximity and its ranking as the country's second largest port city, it has endured relentless bombardment.

Lord Provost Jacqueline McLaren said: "This twinning agreement is a golden opportunity for Glasgow and Mykolaiv to demonstrate the true value of twinning and the benefits it can bring our cities and citizens.

"Glasgow enters this twinning partnership reflecting the sentiments of our city's Patron Saint, St Mungo - to allow our citizens here in Glasgow and there, in Mykolaiv to flourish."

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"My message to Ukrainians here in Glasgow and beyond is that you can count on Glasgow as a steadfast friend. This Memorandum of Understanding a clear demonstration of our friendship and support."

The Mayor of Mykolaiv Oleksandr Syenkevych said:"The city has been bombarded almost continuously and currently the main problem is that people do not have access to clean water since the source of supply was the Dnipro River. However, in spring 2022 the Russians destroyed these water pipes in the Kherson region. Currently our partner cities and international organisations help us with water purification with osmosis systems and clean water supply."

He also outlined a 'Master Plan' to develop the city with the help of the United Nation's Economic Commission adding: "We are ready for alliances with different cities, and I sincerely hope for productive co-operation between Glasgow and Mykolaiv."

Leader of Glasgow City Council Susan Aitken said: "This twinning arrangement is significant for both of our cities - a friendship forged between Glasgow and Mykolaiv which can build bonds of cooperation, collaboration and common purpose. 

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"Glasgow is a city which over the years has stood in solidarity with those facing persecution and injustice. It is in this spirit that our city was amongst the first in the UK to offer our support to the nation and people of Ukraine.

"It is a source of pride that we have been able to provide the many hundreds of Ukrainians seeking sanctuary in our city with accommodation and the support to lessen - as much as possible - the trauma of fleeing their homeland.

"The potential areas of co-operation suggested by our friends in Mykolaiv - from citizenship to economic development, construction and urban management to the green transition and sustainability, and science, technology, and education, to culture, sport and young people - reflects our own agendas for cooperation.

"But Ukraine is more than a country at war and victim of aggression. It is a country with its own rich culture and heritage, a modern European nation. Our twinning will be guided by that and we look forward to a long relationship now and in the future when Ukraine has prevailed in the unprovoked war against its sovereignty and its people."

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