Statement of the YES Board on the military aggression of Russia against Ukraine

24 February 2022

It is with shock and disbelief that we have received the news about an unprovoked military attack of the Russian Federation on the free, sovereign and democratic Ukraine.

It is the first time after World War II that an military attack of such violent scale was launched by one European country against other. It is the more outrageous that this aggression was carried out by a permanent member of the United Nations, after a protracted period of lies and disinformation directed towards the whole international community.

As a group of devoted friends to Ukraine, we stand united in solidarity and compassion with the whole Ukrainian nation and its political leadership.

We are convinced that the order to attack a friendly nation has to be rejected and condemned by the whole community of nations. His actions against Ukraine, the annexation of Crimea, the ignition of a bloody rebellion in Donetsk and Lugansk, and today's war of aggression will be undeniably considered as a crime against peace and humanity.

At the same time, we appeal to the Russian people to express their discord with Vladimir Putin’s aggressive war. We emphasize that the are no criminal nations, but there are criminals who have a nationality.

We call on the whole international community, people of goodwill to support Ukraine in its struggle against the aggressor in every available way. We also call the democratic and free world to immediately implement a sanctions package that would put an extensive burden on Russia, its economy, and its political and business elite.

Aleksander Kwasniewski, President of Poland (1995–2005), Chairman of the Board of YES;

Carl Bildt, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Sweden (2006-2014); Prime Minister of Sweden (1991-1994);

Kersti Kaljulaid, President of Estonia (2016-2021), United Nations Secretary-General's Global Advocate for Every Woman Every Child, 

Wolfgang Ischinger, Ambassador, Chairman of the Munich Security Conference; 

Stephane Fouks, Vice President of Havas Group, Executive Co-Chairman of Havas Worldwide, 

Victor Pinchuk, Founder of YES, businessman and philanthropist,

Anders Fogh Rasmussen, Founder of Rasmussen Global, Secretary General of NATO (2009-2014), and Prime Minister of Denmark (2001-2009)

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Yuval Harari
Yuval Harari
Professor, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, 16th YES Annual Meeting, 2019
«We are already in the midst of an AI arms race, with the USA and China leading the race, while most countries are being left far behind.»