Woodfin offers thoughts and prayers to sister city Birmingham in Ukraine

BIRMINGHAM, Alabama (WIAT) – Mayor Randall Woodfin weighed in on the Russian invasion of Ukraine for the first time, offering thoughts and prayers to Vinnytsia, Birmingham’s Ukrainian sister city.

In a statement sent to CBS 42 on Friday afternoon, Woodfin called the invasion a “conflict,” adding that Ukrainians “deserve a peaceful resolution.”

“The thoughts of the City of Birmingham are with our sister city of Vinnytsia during the conflict in Ukraine,” Woodfin said. β€œThe people of Vinnytsia and all of Ukraine deserve a peaceful resolution to this conflict. We pray for their safety and for justice.

The Vinnytsia city government had previously declared Birmingham representatives had “expressed their support and willingness to help” the city.

Serhii Morhunov, mayor of Vinnytsia, posted a video last April in which he addressed to the Magic City community.

“I would like to express my gratitude to my colleagues in Birmingham – the entire community of the city and the Ukrainian diaspora – because the citizens have felt your support for many years,” Morhunov said at the time.

Vinnytsia is in the south-central part of Ukraine, about 200 km southwest of Kyiv, the national capital.

Birmingham and Vinnytsia became sister cities in 2003, according to Birmingham Sister Citiesa non-profit organization that facilitates cultural partnerships.

According to the organization, Birmingham currently has 13 sister cities in 11 different countries.

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