Chief Rabbi of Ukraine and Kyiv, Yaakov Dov Bleich, addressed Jews and all citizens of Ukraine on the anniversary of the full-scale invasion of Russia, his press service reports.

"We need to pray to God now that the war is over, so that people can return to their homes, so that there is peace for everyone. Ukraine has never had any claims against Russia, we are not interested in what is being done in Russia. We need Ukraine to feel good. And that's what we're building. We are now building a future in Ukraine that will be for all of us, for our children and for future generations. A normal life, with a normal democracy," the Chief rabbi's press service said in a statement with reference to his video message on Friday, Feb. 24.

According to Bleich, the Jewish community of Ukraine numbered more than 360,000 people before the war, but almost half of them left the country. And the rest suffer because of the lack of the usual peacetime needs: electricity, heating, and in some places water.


"There are a lot of people who left Ukraine, more than 15,000 left for Israel. We know that there are a lot of them in Germany, Hungary, Switzerland, and America. We understand that these people ... want to return to Ukraine. We don't know when it will happen," he said.

The Chief Rabbi of Ukraine and Kyiv also recalled that Jews around the world are preparing for one of the main Jewish holidays – Purim. As Bleich noted, this holiday is a lesson for everyone when good always wins over hostile intentions.

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"In 1953, Stalin also died on Purim. And that's why we pray that God will perform a miracle, that there will be peace, that the war will remain in the past, that there will be peace, and that we will be able to live our lives in peace, and that Ukraine will win," the chief Rabbi of Ukraine and Kyiv said.


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