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Zelenskyy signs law recognising 8 May as Day of Remembrance and Victory over Nazism

Monday, 12 June 2023, 15:16
Zelenskyy signs law recognising 8 May as Day of Remembrance and Victory over Nazism
Volodymyr Zelenskyy. Photo by Getty Images

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has signed the law "On the Day of Remembrance and Victory over Nazism in World War II in 1939-1945", which will be celebrated in Ukraine on 8 May.

Source: website of the Verkhovna Rada (the Ukrainian parliament)

Details: An explanatory note to the law states that as a civilised, peaceful and democratic European state, Ukraine honours the memory of the heroic achievement of everyone who fought against Nazism, as well as all the victims who were affected by the war – civilians who suffered from the occupation and hostilities, Ostarbeiters, resistance fighters, children of war and others.


It is a duty for the citizens of Ukraine to remember the huge losses it took to secure the victory over Nazism.

In European countries, this victory is annually celebrated on 8 May, the day on which Nazi Germany surrendered, as a commemoration of those killed in World War II.

"This is pure history, without ideological impurities. And this is the history of our people, our allies, the entire free world. Today we are bringing it back to our state," the president said as he submitted the document to parliament. 



  • In March 2015, then President Petro Poroshenko issued a decree designating 8 May as the Day of Remembrance and Reconciliation in Ukraine, but 9 May remained the Day of Victory over Nazism in World War II. 8 May was a working day and 9 May remained a public holiday.
  • Poroshenko then explained this by his desire to unite Ukraine, saying: "When we hear the president of a neighbouring country answer the provocateur's question that the victory could have happened without Ukrainians, it is a split in the general anti-fascist movement, a mockery of the memory of Ukrainians who liberated not only Ukraine but the whole of Europe."
  • On 2 May 2023, after 9 years of Russia's hybrid war against Ukraine and more than a year of full-scale war, the Verkhovna Rada legislatively recognised the political regime in Russia as "Ruscism" and condemned it.
  • On 9 May, Russia celebrates Victory Day in the so-called Great Patriotic War.
  • European countries celebrate Europe Day on 9 May; in Ukraine, Europe Day was celebrated on the third Saturday of May until this year.

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