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2 October, 2018
In Search for Truth and Justice: A Speech by War Veteran Igor Stadnytskyy
Glory to Ukraine! My name is Igor Stadnytskyy, I am 41 and a veteran of the war in the East of Ukraine. I was a soldier in the 24th light armoured brigade, the 2nd battalion of the anti-aircraft troop, I was a senior mechanic and a driver.
My military rank is a Senior Soldier. In 2014, I protected Ukrainian border towns and villages including Anthracite, Amvrosiivka, Zelenopillia, Biriukovo, Dovzhanske, and at “ground zero” in the so-called sector D. After that I got into the Izvarinsky «encirclement». Entrapped within, I saved the lives of 10 brothers-in-arms and retrieved military equipment including a Zenit twin barrel anti-aircraft gun, all the while being shelled by the enemy. Upon returning home, I underwent rehabilitation treatment in a military hospital. There, I was approached by officials, deputies and other famous people who said that if I have problems, I can turn to them for help. As a military official, who was called to duty during mobilization, according to Ukraine’s law, I am a military serviceman. As a soldier who participated in the Anti Terrorist Operation in the East, in accordance with paragraph 19 of Article 6 of the Law of Ukraine "On the Status of Veterans of War, Guarantees of Their Social Protection," I am a war veteran. As a war veteran, I have the right to benefits, namely, to the priority in providing permanent defence housing, this, in accordance with Article 12 of the aforementioned Law. Today I'm speaking not only for myself, but also on behalf of many of my brothers and sisters-in-arms. Many of them, like me, are now waiting for housing guaranteed by the state, but without success. I live together with my family, my brother's family and our parents in a two-room apartment with a living area of 30 square meters. We have four children. I hope to get what the state has promised to me. When I was being treated in the hospital in 2014, I recieved priority for defence housing for the war veterans and was given number 19 in the queue. Since then, four years have passed, and my position in the queue has not changed. Although in the meantime two apartment blocks in Lviv have been built, where people have received or continue receiving apartments. The apartment block in Lviv, located on 230 Bogdan Khmelnitsky Str. 230 serves as an example. In that building, 18 apartments were to be allocated to war veterans, and 26 more - to the Lviv City Council officials!! Given that war veterans have a primary right to housing, I should have been moved up from my position in the queue. But my number remains 19. Not a single war veteran received housing there. Instead, the apartments were allegedly given to the people with disabilities who are not related to the recent war in the East. The decision on who will receive these apartments allegedly was made early in the morning on May 18, 2018, but even if so, everything was «hushed-up», so that nobody knew about it. Another suspicious situation pertains to the construction of an apartment block for 53 flats in Lviv, on Pidgolosko Str. The land for this house was allocated specially for the reason that there will be apartments constructed for war veterans. When the apartments were distributed, 41 of them were allocated to the families of the deceased and disabled during the war in the East, markedly 12 apartments were not given to anyone. When I asked the Mayor of Lviv, Andriy Sadovyi about these apartments, he told me that they were reserved for those participating in the “cooperative association” deal. In other words, for those who can pay some part of the money for the apartment. The mayor also stressed that "there would be no free housing". Trying to get what the state has promised me as a serviceman and a war veteran, I turned to the Lviv City Council, to the deputies of the Verkhovna Rada, to the Lviv Mayor, to the Head of the Lviv Regional Council, to the Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada. The President of Ukraine himself promised me that my situation woud be solved. However, my number in the queue has remained unchanged – it’s still 19. Please note that the queue is not moving not only for me, but for my brothers and sisters-in-arms as well. I also tried to recieve a piece of land. In accordance with the Law of Ukraine "On the Status of Veterans of War, Guarantees of Their Social Protection", as a war veteran I have the primary right to recieve the land to build my own house. However, I got the answer from the Lviv City Council and the Regional State Administration that there were no land for the war veterans. I want honesty and justice, for my family and families of the other war veterans, my blood friends whose right to the priority in defence housing was assured by risking their lives. Thank you. Ihor Stadnytsky