War in Ukraine: Cockerel jug gifted to Boris Johnson goes on display in Edinburgh
A cockerel-shaped ceramic jug gifted to Prime Minister Boris Johnson in Kyiv has gone on display to delegates at the Edinburgh International Culture Summit.
The jug, which has become a symbol of Ukrainian resistance, is being displayed at the biennial event to demonstrate the ongoing international solidarity with Ukraine following the illegal invasion of the country by Russia.
This type of jug became emblematic of Ukraine’s resistance against the invading Russian forces after photographer Elizaveta Servatynska captured an image of a similar jug sitting undamaged on a kitchen cabinet in a high-rise apartment block in March. The building, in Borodyanka, had been badly hit by Russian bombing.
Arts minister Lord Parkinson said: “As we meet in Edinburgh, this jug will serve as a powerful reminder of Ukraine’s unflagging strength and resistance in the face of Russia’s barbaric invasion.”
The item went on display as Mr Johnson condemned Russia’s “cultural vandalism” in Ukraine, saying invading forces were trying to erase Ukrainian culture in areas they had taken over.
The Prime Minister said the UK would fund “cultural protection measures” in Ukraine as well as continuing to donate civil and military aid.
He also praised Eurovision winners Kalush Orchestra and said he was proud the UK would be holding Eurovision next year on Ukraine’s behalf.
Mr Johnson made the comments in a video message to the Edinburgh International Culture Summit, which is being hosted at the Scottish Parliament.
The summit brings together culture ministry delegations from around the world and has a particular focus on Ukraine this year.
Mr Johnson said: “Throughout history, we’ve seen what happens when aggressors try to oppress and to eliminate culture.
“We saw it with the Nazis in the Second World War, the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia, the Taliban in Afghanistan.
“Today, the world is once again witnessing unforgivable acts of cultural vandalism, this time in Ukraine.”
He continued: “Much of [Vladimir] Putin’s twisted rationale for his invasion rests on the vile assertion that Ukraine is somehow not a real country.
“This is a lie that he seeks to make true by systematically erasing all traces of the centuries-old Ukrainian culture.”