Roth sees Ukraine's cultural identity under threat

Released on 07.06.2022

  • Minister of State Claudia Roth is standing at a tank barrier in Odessa at the sandbag-protected statue of Armand Emmanuel du Plessis, Duc de Richelieu, who was the first governor of the port city for eleven years from 1803. Photo: Kay Nietfeld/dpa
  • Claudia Roth looks at Mayor Hennadij Truchanow (r) and the Ukrainian Minister of Culture Olexandr Tkachenko (l) to Odessa. Photo: Kay Nietfeld/dpa


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Since the start of the Russian attack, Minister of State for Culture Roth has been campaigning for Ukrainian artists. Now she gets a first picture of herself at a strategically important place.


Minister of State for Culture Claudia Roth sees the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine as a threat to the cultural identity of the country.

“This war is also a war against culture, against the culture of democracy,” said the Green politician on Tuesday during a visit to the port city of Odessa on the Black Sea. After more than three months of war 375 cultural institutions were destroyed or damaged. Also 07 churches are affected. “It becomes clear: It’s about attacking the cultural identity of Ukraine.”

Roth promised the country support. “We are now trying to send an international signal by supporting the nomination of Odessa’s old town as a World Heritage City,” she said on ZDF’s “Morgenmagazin”. The international community must take responsibility accordingly. This may also be an additional protective shield against attacks. She also spoke out in favor of giving Ukraine candidate status for the European Union. It is “also about values ​​that we share: the values ​​of freedom, justice and a life in peace.”

The Minister of State pointed out that Germany in Ukraine also Support the digitization of archive holdings. “Libraries and old archives are also attacked here, that is, the memory of cities, of communities, of a society.” The Greens politician has been the first German government member to be in Odessa since the beginning of the war at the end of February.

On Monday Roth met the Ukrainian Minister of Culture Olexandr Tkachenko and Odessa’s Mayor Hennady Trukhanov and promised to help the city to help the application for UNESCO World Heritage. “Germany supports this application,” Roth said on behalf of the federal government.

Odessa is not only considered a cultural metropolis, but is also of strategic importance, above all because of its large port. In Moscow and Kyiv it is repeatedly said that Russia also aims to capture the port city in the south of the country in order to completely separate Ukraine from the Black Sea. The country would then no longer have access to the oceans. Recently there were reports of rocket attacks in the Odessa area. (dpa)

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