Ukraine Rally in Santa Monica
March 24, 2022
3.15.22 (AP) Members of the Ukrainian-American diaspora and their supporters marched through the streets of Santa Monica on Saturday, March 12, in the latest Southern California protest condemning the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Hundreds of participants in the Stand with Ukraine Rally gathered to call for an end to the bloodshed, carrying blue and yellow flags of many sizes. Some toted signs bearing such slogans as "Hands Off Ukraine," "No War" and "We Are All Ukrainians Now."
Veronika Vozna, 23, a dance and gymnastics teacher, just arrived in Southern California from Ukraine.
"I came here on March 4th. It was terrible there, the whole situation was awful," said Vozna, who wore a traditional embroidered blouse with a red rose in her hair.
Her father and her little brother are still in Ukraine, she said, while her mother made it to safety in Poland, where she is helping Ukrainian refugees."She is finding and organizing shelter and food and everything they need," she said.
Many in the throng unrolled a long, winding flag as they strode through the streets, then carrying it out onto the Santa Monica Pier.
A small plane flew overhead, pulling a banner that read "Close Sky Over Ukraine."
The march was the latest in a series of demonstrations in the region that have been staged in the two weeks since the start of the invasion, regarded as the biggest military mobilization in Europe since World War II.