'Friendship' over with Russia, Kyiv statue wants Putin to 'shoot' himself
- A statue in Kyiv depicts Russian President Vladimir Putin with a gun in his mouth
- The temporary sculptural installation is titled "Shoot yourself"
- A statue in Kyiv, signaling friendship between Russia and Ukraine, was previously dismantled
A temporary sculptural installation in Kyiv, Ukraine's capital, depicts Russian President Vladimir Putin with a gun in his mouth with the message "Shoot yourself".
Dmitry Iv's work at the centre of the capital represents Ukraine's animosity towards Russia since Putin sent in troops on February 24, triggering the largest conflict Europe has seen since World War II.
Amid the invasion, a statue marking Ukraine and Russia's friendship, and commemorating the Soviet Union, was dismantled. Kyiv mayor Vitali Klitschko spoke about taking down the People’s Friendship Arch, saying "We now see what this ‘friendship’ is – destruction of Ukrainian cities…killing tens of thousands of peaceful people. I am convinced such a monument has an entirely different meaning now".
One of the designers, Serhiy Myrhodorsky, added, "Russia invaded Ukraine…Can we be friends with Russia? What do you think? This is our worst enemy, that’s why the monument to Russia-Ukrainian friendship doesn’t make sense anymore."
Signalling Ukraine's changing relations, the statue symbolizing friendship between the nations is to be renamed Arch of Freedom of the Ukrainian People, as per Kyiv's mayor.
In the initial days of the invasion, Yuval Noah Harari, a public intellectual and historian at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem noted that while Putin might win Ukraine, it would be hard for him to hold it unless Ukrainians allowed it. This has become increasingly unlikely, with Russia's actions in the war-torn nation.
From indiscriminate shelling to the uncovering of mass civilian graves in Bucha after Moscow's troops withdrew from Kyiv and Chernihiv regions, the atrocities of war have brought condemnation from Ukrainians and the global community.
Amid the ongoing invasion, Putin has continued justifying his actions using World War II analogies, vowing to "denazify" Ukraine. This comes despite Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky's own Jewish heritage, and the experience of his family living through the Holocaust. Despite Russia's drive to "denazify" their attacks have also impacted the Holocaust memorial Babin Yar, in Kyiv.