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    Andrzej Duda praises Jews for helping Ukrainians

    Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

    Andrzej Duda, the president of Poland, has thanked Jewish communities in the country for the help they have extended to Ukrainian refugees.

    Duda paid tribute to Polish Jews on Monday during a Hanukkah ceremony in the presidential palace.

    Hanukkah is an eight-day festival of light that begins on the 25th day of the month of Kislev in the Jewish calendar – it celebrates the triumph of light over darkness. The Feast of Lights commemorates the Maccabees’ victory over the Greeks in the 164 BC Maccabean War.

    “It is a celebration of Israel’s victory over the occupiers who wanted to take away Israel’s homeland and religion,”

    he said.

    Duda added that this year’s Hanukkah is an opportunity to praise the help provided by Polish Jews to Ukrainians who came to Poland after Russia’s war on Ukraine started.

    So far, Poland which borders Ukraine to the West has accepted over 8.5 million of refugees and many of them declared they would stay in the host country.

    “You have welcomed Ukrainians, Jews and non-Jews, and I thank you with all my heart for this act of brotherhood and humanity,”

    Andrzej Duda said.

    Poland’s chief rabbi, Michael Schudrich, said it was a time “to remember also those who have no light.”

    “Let’s pray that at the next Hanukkah, there will be a feast of light in Ukraine, too,”

    he said.

    This year, Hanukkah starts on December 18 and ends on December 26.


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