Government buildings in London have been flying the Ukrainian flag in a symbol of solidarity following the invasion of the country by Vladimir Putin’s Russian army.
The distinctive pale blue and yellow colours fluttered above famous locations ranging from 10 Downing Street to the Thames-side HQ of secret intelligence service MI6 from Thursday evening.
And both of these venues were lit up with the Ukrainian national colours last night.
Boris Johnson’s official spokesperson said the move was an “expression of solidarity” with the people of Ukraine.
The flag of Ukraine was also raised outside the Scottish Government’s HQ at St Andrew’s House, Edinburgh.
The combination of blue and yellow as a symbol of the Ukrainian homeland stems from the 12th century flag of the kingdom of Galicia-Volhynia. It has been used as a national flag since 1848, when it was raised above the town hall of Lviv, then part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire.
The bicolour flag was officially adopted as a state flag for the first time in 1918 by the short-lived Ukrainian People’s Republic, but was outlawed under the Soviet Union.
It was officially restored as the national flag in 1992 following Ukrainian independence.