08 July 2014

A Statement from the Head of the House of Romanoff on the threat of a humanitarian catastrophe in southeastern Ukraine

A Statement from the Head of the House of Romanoff on the threat of a humanitarian catastrophe in southeastern Ukraine


From the Head of the Russian Imperial House

H.I.H. The Grand Duchess Maria of Russia

On the threat of a humanitarian catastrophe in southeastern Ukraine

Again and again my heart is filled with deep sorrow by the continuous reports of the fratricidal civil war that is tearing Ukraine apart.

Unfortunately, despite all the efforts being made by government leaders, diplomats, and religious and social figures in Russia and in many other countries, the conflict continues unabated. More and more, the victims of this violence are the civilian population, and worst of all, completely defenseless children, women, and the elderly. The situation in Ukraine can already be regarded as a humanitarian catastrophe; and when the cold weather sets in this autumn and winter, the destruction of infrastructure in many cities and towns will bring even more difficult hardships.

What is happening now in the southeastern parts of Ukraine is a disaster not only for the population of this region and for Ukraine in general. It is a broader calamity, fraught with dire consequences for all the fraternal peoples of the former Russian Empire and USSR—and ultimately, for all Europe and the entire world.

Hatred, cruelty, random violence, and lawlessness are the inevitable outcome of all civil unrest, bringing death and dooming the majority of the survivors to ruin and humiliation in their own country or to the sorrowful plight of the refugee.

The Russian Imperial House, which lived through the Revolution of 1917 and many years of exile, understands that kind of suffering first hand. Our ancestors and relatives lost their lives; they saw the extermination of loved ones; they felt the painful sorrow at being unable to help the millions who were being persecuted and oppressed. Now, by the grace of God, our links to the Fatherland have been restored, and opportunities have gradually opened up for us to reestablish in Russia our family’s tradition of public service.

Before all else, I ask all our loyal friends and all our countrymen who hold to their oaths of loyalty made by their ancestors, to become involved now in charities and other good works. And it is precisely to them that I turn now with this appeal to make a concerted effort to help those suffering from the conflict in Ukraine.

The scope of the tragedy is such that effective aid can only be offered by uniting our efforts. No single person, no matter how influential or wealthy, can resolve the problems now confronting the citizens of Ukraine, who have been forced to flee from their homes or who are now living among the ruins and ashes of their houses. Therefore, any assistance in any amount is vitally important. To the extent we each have the means and resources, we must contribute to the efforts of religious, charitable, and social organizations and agencies that are working to alleviate the suffering of the victims of this destructive conflict.

I wish to thank in advance all those who respond generously to this request. I pray for the Ukrainian people—for the repose of the dead; for the recovery of the wounded; for the strengthening of those who are persecuted; for the changing of the hearts and minds of those who have turned to violence, extremism, and xenophobia; for the ending of all violence; and for the establishment of peace and calm in Ukraine.

[Signed by Her Imperial Highness:]



June 25/July 8, 2014

Holy Martyrs Leonida, Livia, and Eutropia

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