Last week, ALDE Party Vice-Presidents Baroness Sal Brinton and Kira Rudik MP took part in an online event organised by the Liberal Democrats, one of ALDE Party’s member parties in the UK.
During the event, Rudik talked about what life is like in Ukraine at the moment, highlighting how the country has lost 50% of its energy infrastructure. Though Ukraine is able to produce enough energy, the country is unable to distribute it. While critical infrastructure like hospitals have what they need – the rest, she says, they figure out as they go along. Additionally, Ukraine is experiencing regular electricity outages, impacting water supplies and heating. During this freezing winter, the priority is heating, followed by running water and electricity.
“The fuel we are running on is hope” she said. Grateful for the support from the West, she acknowledged that Ukrainians didn’t think they would last a year.
She also warned that Ukraine expects a major Russian offensive in the Spring, starting on the one-year anniversary of the invasion on 24 February, and highlighted the importance of the airplanes President Volodymyr Zelenskyy is asking for:
“If we get jets, we get another layer of security and ability to intercept the missiles to make sure the people who are fighting have less chance to die tomorrow. Not because we want or like fighter jets, but because they are a matter of life and death for us.”
In her interventions, Brinton raised the horrific issue of abducted children and told how 300 babies were taken from Mariupol and adopted in Russia. Moreover, the older children adopted will likely be conscripted to fight for Russia in Ukraine when they reach adulthood.
However, she said that Putin has united Europe, not just the EU, against him.
For a more complete account of the event, read the article on the Liberal Democrats website here.
You can also watch the full event here or below.
Photo credit: Kira Rudik