Albany, NY – Mayor Kathy Sheehan joined Assemblymembers Patricia Fahy and John McDonald, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Basil Seggos, City Treasurer Darius Shahinfar, Chief City Auditor Dr. Dorcey Applyrs, and members of the Albany Common Council earlier today to welcome Mayor Anatoliy Fedoruk and a delegation from Bucha, Ukraine to New York’s Capital City.
While at City Hall, Mayor Sheehan and Mayor Fedoruk signed a memorandum of understanding, outlining a sister city relationship between the Cities of Albany and Bucha.
This agreement outlines an effort to extend partnership cooperation, guided by the principles of reciprocity and respecting the interests of both states, considering the historical and cultural heritage, as well as the development of good neighborly relations between Albany and Bucha, seeking to establish and develop effective cooperation between communities and organizations of both cities.
Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan said, “We stand in solidarity with you, the City of Bucha and all of Ukraine and condemn the atrocities committed by Russia in its illegal, unprovoked and inhumane attack on your city and you sovereign nation. When tragedy strikes any city in this country – a mass shooting, natural disaster or horrific accident – the mayor of that city will receive calls of support and advice from fellow mayors who have experienced a similar event. But Mayor, what you have experienced in Bucha, none of us can fully comprehend. You have lost not only property and infrastructure, schools and institutions, but you have lost countless lives. That is why I am signing, with you, a memorandum of understanding between our two cities to create a bond between us that we hope will lead to brighter days ahead for Bucha.”
Bucha Mayor Anatoly Fedoruk concluded, "We are sincerely grateful for the support we received from the municipality of Albany and believe that this is the first, but very important step that will help us endure and accelerate our common Great Victory, and together rebuild our cities.”
«Ми щиро вдячні за ту підтримку, яку отримали від муніципалітету Олбані і віримо, що це перший, але дуже важливий крок, який допоможе нам вистояти і пришвидшити нашу спільну Велику Перемогу, і разом відбудувати наші міста», – підсумував Анатолій Федорук.
Basil Seggos, Commissioner of the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation said, “Today’s sister city agreement between Albany Mayor Sheehan and Bucha Mayor Fedoruk is a powerful statement of the support that everyday Americans have for the cause of Ukraine. Bucha was devastated during the early days of the Russian invasion. I had the chance to meet with Mayor Fedoruk when I was over there and it is clear that he is a big reason why his city has been able to get back on its feet. It is incredible to now have him in Albany in a spirit of unity as he charts a stronger future for his city.”
Brock Bierman, former USAID Assistant Administrator, founder of the Volunteer Ambulance Corps program and organizer of the Mayors trip said, “We are thrilled to have Bucha Mayor Fedoruk visit the United States. During his trip he has visited Washington, DC, Virginia, New York and Pennsylvania. During his visit we introduced the Mayor to members of Congress, government leaders and policy makers. Today’s meeting and agreement with Albany Mayor Sheehan is the start of a wonderful relationship between two strong leaders and their cities.”
Assemblymember Patricia Fahy said, “Albany stands with Mayor Anatoliy Fedoruk and the people of the City of Bucha, Ukraine as they continue to recover from the destruction Russia’s invasion caused in the early months of the war last year. Our Capital City has a history of standing with those who have experienced oppression, especially during times of great need. Thank you to Mayor Sheehan for signing this agreement and solidifying Albany’s solidarity with the people of Ukraine as they fight for freedom and sovereignty.”
Assemblymember John T. McDonald III, RPh said, "I extend a warm welcome to Mayor Fedoruk, Deputy Mayor Skoryk-Shkarivska, and the entire Bucha delegation. As a former Mayor, I cannot comprehend the challenges faced in trying to rebuild when your community is subject to the unspeakable atrocities that the people of Bucha have endured. However, the people of Bucha are strong and have countless allies and friends around the world, including those of us who stand with them today. I wish you success and support as you work to heal and reconstruct your communities to be stronger than ever."
City Treasurer Darius Shahinfar said, “In these troubling times for Ukraine and the world, creating this relationship between Albany and Bucha, Ukraine is a small, but important step to strengthen the bonds that exist between our democratic nations. Russia’s aggression has laid bare that the struggle that Ukraine and the world collectively face, not against defunct 19th Century economic ideologies, but against totalitarian dictatorships that seek to put pluralistic democracies under their boot. I salute Mayor Fedoruk for taking the time away from his homeland to strengthen the bonds of our democracies and pray for the safety of all the Ukrainian people.”
Chief City Auditor Dr. Dorcey Applyrs said, “I count it an honor to join my colleagues in government as we extend a warm welcome to Mayor Fedoruk of Bucha, Ukraine to the City of Albany. It is my sincere hope that this visit which is meant to establish a lasting bond between our two Cities, via a memorandum of understanding, is not just symbolic in nature but results in a lasting and meaningful relationship. As members of a global community, we as a nation and city must share in the burden of war inflicted upon Ukraine by Russia. Through our actions, thoughts, and prayers, let us remember the people of Ukraine as they continue to fight heroically for their country and lives.”