An international “Crimea Global: Understanding Ukraine Through the South” conference with over 70 speakers from more than 30 countries discussed the liberation of Crimea specifically and the future of Ukraine more broadly.

The nine panels concentrated on democratic-minded viewpoints from the Global South, with representatives from Africa, Asia, and Central and South America.

The Crimea Platform, an international consultation and coordination format initiated by Ukraine, hosted the event in Kyiv on Oct 14-16. According to the organization's mission statement:

“The Platform aims to increase the effectiveness of the international response to the ongoing occupation of Crimea and mounting security threats, respond to growing security threats, increase international pressure on the Kremlin, prevent further human rights violations and protect victims of the occupation regime, and achieve the main goal – de-occupation of Crimea and its peaceful return to Ukraine.”

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Left: Ihor Zhovkva from Ukraine’s Office of the President speaking during the opening panel of Crimea Global: Understanding Ukraine Through the South. Right: Ihor Zhovkva with Lila Roldán Vázquez, General Secretary of the Argentinian Council of Foreign Relations (CARI) and Former Ambassador of Argentina to Ukraine from 2007 to 2015 (r). Photo: Oleksandr Avramenko, Kyiv PostPhoto: Oleksandr Avramenko, Kyiv Post

The conference opened with a special address by Mustafa Dzhemilev, the Leader of the Crimean Tatars, and remarks by Tamila Tasheva, Permanent Representative of the Ukrainian President in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea. Also, Ihor Zhovkva, Deputy Head of the Office of the President of Ukraine spoke representing President Volodymyr Zelensky.

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Panel topics included global energy and food security, de-colonialism, war and its violence on women, international law, post-war reconstruction, the Wagner group and its human rights violations, and a sustainable peace plan for Ukraine and Crimea after liberation.

Attendees of Crimea Global: Understanding Ukraine Through the South. Photo: Oleksandr Avramenko, Kyiv Post

Russian aggression against Muslims was a topic of focus and was tied to historical and current Russian persecution of the Muslim population in Crimea. This was discussed by a panel with Muslim community leaders from Ukraine/Crimea, Syria, Malaysia and Guinea.

The final topic addressed was the difference between global leftists who follow a principled approach to stand up against aggression and those who think appeasement would give peace a better chance.

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The opening panel of Crimea Global: Understanding Ukraine Through the South. Photo: Oleksandr Avramenko, Kyiv Post

The conference opened with discussions of a peace plan for Crimea and all the rest of Ukraine. It closed with the hopes of doing the Crimea Platform’s conference “next year in Crimea.”

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