Credit: Kangkan Halder

On Thursday 18 August 2022, the mayor of the City of Luxembourg (Ville de Luxembourg – VdL), Lydie Polfer, inaugurated the new N3 / N40 national road "Boulevard de Kyiv" in Luxembourg-Bonnevoie, in recognition and encouragement to the Ukrainian people.

Mayor Polfer said that the naming the street in recognition of the Capital of Ukraine is to support Ukrainains and send a strong message of solidarity. She also received a letter earlier in the day from the mayor of of Kyiv, Vitaliy Klitschko, which mayor Polfer read to the audience. Kyiv Mayor said: "... people find true friends in the most challenging times, so I am writing to you express my sincere gratitude for the active support that you and your city provide to Ukraine and Kyiv... In this time, you managed to build a symbolic bridge between Luxembourg and Kyiv with the strongest material in the world because it is in the hearts of Kyivans and Luxembourgers". the letter continued "I would like to use this opportunity to express the highest consideration to you and gratitude to the Luxembourg community for its solidarity with the Ukrainian nation".

Chargée d'Affaires at the Ukraine embassy in Belgium, Natalia Anoshyna, said that Ukraine and all the Ukrainain people are thankful and very much appreciate this supportive gesture of the City of Luxembourg, and every time she will visit Luxembourg in future, she will feel like home as the street name will remind her of Kyiv.

Speaking with regarding the naming of the street, deputy mayor of the City of Luxembourg and chief alderman, Serge Wilmes, said: "It is very important, a sign of solidarity with Ukraine... it is also a statement in recognition of a free and independent European Ukraine".

Earlier on 20 July 2022, the name of the road was initially announced as "Boulevard de Kiev", with the Ukrainian spelling "Kyiv" (and "Capitale de l'Ukraine") written underneath on related street signs, drew criticism from several members of the public, particularly the Ukrainian community in Luxembourg, since the spelling "Kiev" is derived from the Russian language. In its defence, the City of Luxembourg clarified that the spelling was derived from the official French name for the Ukrainian capital, however, later it updated the decision to name the road "Boulevard de Kyiv - Capitale de l’Ukraine".

Speaking with on the occassion, vice-president of the non-profit organisation LUkraine asbl, Inna Yaremenko, said: "For almost six months now, we have been waking up to news about the bombing of our country, and this terrible feeling cannot be compared with anything else. From the first days of the full-scale invasion, we have seen the monumental support for Ukraine by the people of Luxembourg. We are very grateful for that. Now, it is of utter importance to continue providing this support, to remember that there is still a war going on somewhere nearby and people are dying for their independence and democratic values on a daily basis". She continued "The naming of the Boulevard de Kyiv, in my opinion, is an important sign of solidarity and one of the ways to draw much-needed attention to the situation in Ukraine".

Ms Yaremenko elaborated: "The decision of the city council to name Boulevard de Kyiv using the Ukrainian transliteration, speaks of how deep this solidarity is, and how much Luxembourgers understand our strong desire to 'Mir wëlle bleiwe wat mir sinn'." She concluded: "So, thank you again, City of Luxembourg!" witnessed around 70 participants for this event, mostly Ukrainians, waving flags and holding placards of solidarity.