“The Putin issue”

As the conflict in Ukraine continues to escalate, expatriate Ukrainians and their supporters are holding another rally in Perth to protest at the Russian invasion.

A sign of solidarity with besieged Ukrainians. Photo: Lucian Goleanu.

It’s the second public demonstration in support of Ukraine in Supreme Court Gardens in less than a week. 

Organisers want the Australian government’s assistance in helping those fleeing Ukraine and hope for visa, healthcare, and educational support for citizens. 

Dignitaries attending the rally include Senator David Van, Senator Dean Smith and Consul for Poland Paul Bitford. 

Coordinator of the Stop War in Ukraine Facebook group Olena Yukhymets says “the Putin issue” rally will give Ukrainians and their community representatives an opportunity to establish what the Australian government is doing to support them.

Ms Yukhymets says Ukrainians fleeing Australia are currently eligible for a visitor visa, which is valid for three months, with the potential of being extended.

“Most Ukrainians in Australia are waiting to hear what the path forward is for those displaced persons arriving from Ukraine,” she says.

As the conflict enters its 15th day, international attention has turned to the fate of the former Chernobyl nuclear power station which was damaged and shut down in 1986.

The power supply was cut to all Chernobyl facilities on Wednesday, posing the risk of a radiation leak. 

Curtin academic Nigel Marks has assessed the condition of the Chernobyl facility. Photo:Ike Adesanya.

Associate Professor in Physics and Astronomy at Curtin University Nigel Marks isn’t concerned the nuclear power station poses a safety risk to Ukrainians. 

“It’s certainly not ideal. In the hierarchy of risks that are happening in Ukraine this is going to be right at the bottom of the pile.”

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