German Federal Youth Council stands with National Youth Council of Ukraine
We look with great concern at the mobilization of Russian forces on the border with Ukraine and the deployment of Russian troops on Ukrainian territory. Following the illegal annexation of Crimea, the invasion of Ukraine by Russian troops is another breach of international law by Russia and a disregard for the United Nations Charter. Ukraine is a sovereign state whose territory must not be violated.
We stand with our colleagues and friends of the National Youth Council of Ukraine (NYCU) and its member organizations. Young people are particularly vulnerable in wars and conflicts. We stand in solidarity with all civil society activists in the region who are working for peace, human rights and democracy. We reaffirm our solidarity with young people in Ukraine, Russia and the region who are fighting for freedom and democracy.
The International Youth Exchange is a central element for peace and international understanding in Europe and beyond its borders. In Europe in particular, transnational youth exchanges have made and continue to make a significant contribution to breaking down resentments and prejudices and helping Europeans grow together into a peaceful community. This is put into practice in youth encounters and exchanges, international camps and joint committee work at both European and international level. This achievement must be preserved and protected all the more in times of crisis.
A peaceful future can only be achieved with the young generation. In maintaining peace and security, young people and self-determined youth structures must be involved. For us, peace is more than the absence of war, coercion and violence: our vision is that children and young people can live without fear of war. Peace is and remains the goal towards which we youth associations work through peace education and policy.
The German Federal Youth Council urges the Russian government to uphold the sovereignty of Ukraine and to stop any military as well as hybrid aggression. The territorial integrity of Ukraine must be fully restored. The Russian government is called upon to take the path of diplomacy.