Through its Centre of Expertise for Good Governance the Council of Europe has held a series of online conferences “Local governments unite for welfare and peace” from 18 March to 7 April 2022.
Amid the ongoing aggression from the Russian Federation, local authorities in Ukraine continue to provide public services, including in the areas currently occupied or encircled by Russian troops. The goal of the “online marathon” was for the Ukrainian local leaders to explain, discuss and gain support for their efforts to continue to offer essential services to local people and/or to internally displaced persons in crisis times, and for their counterparts in Europe and elsewhere to offer advice and support.
Oleksiy Chernyshov, Minister for Communities and Territories Development of Ukraine, and Mayors of Kyiv, Lviv, Chernihiv, Kharkiv, Mariupol, Bucha (Kyiv region), Trostianets (Sumy region), Melitopol and other Ukrainian cities took part in the marathon.
Their international counterparts joined them from Hungary, Moldova, Poland, Romania and the Slovak Republic – Ukraine’s closest neighbours that received the largest number of refugees fleeing the war. They also came from Austria, France, Germany, Ireland, Switzerland, the UK, the Baltic and Nordic countries, Belgium, Netherlands, Luxembourg, Italy, Spain, Greece, Portugal Turkey and Balkan countries. The concluding session of the marathon on 7 April 2022 brought together representatives from Israel, Canada, Mexico and the USA.
The recordings of marathon sessions can be viewed on the project’s Facebook page.