TORONTO (QHA) -

On May 18, for the first time the Crimean Tatar flag was raised over the Toronto City Hall building in solidarity with the Crimean Tatar people and in memory of the 1944 deportation victims.

Information on the official flag raising ceremony was published on Facebook page of the Presidential Commissioner of Ukraine on Affairs of the Crimean Tatar people, MP Mustafa Dzhemilev.

The event was also attended by Deputy Chairman of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people Akhtem Chiygoz.

The raising of the flag was accompanied by the performance of the anthem of the Crimean Tatar people.

After that, Mustafa Dzhemilev, Akhtem Chiygoz and Ukraine's ambassador to Canada Andriy Shevchenko addressed the audience.

Dzhemilev described the tragedy of the Crimean Tatars and called the deportation on May 18, 1944, an attempt to destroy the indigenous people of the Crimea, and make the peninsula Russian.

“And 4 years ago, the occupation of the Crimea also occurred with the goal of expanding the "Russian world". But now the situation has changed. In 1944 the world was silent when the Crimean Tatars were deported, and this inspired the USSR to kill even more people. But now we are no longer alone, now we have an independent Ukrainian democratic state, all the democratic forces around the world with us, and the war in Ukraine that began in the Crimea will end in the Crimea,” he said.

Dzhemilev expressed confidence that the Crimean Tatars will definitely return to their historical homeland and drive the invaders from their land.

Earlier, on May 18, 2016 the Crimean Tatar flag was raised over the parliament building of the province of Ontario, and in 2017 - over the City Hakll of the Canadian capital of Ottawa.

QHA