WATCH: Manila Cathedral and UST light up in Ukrainian colors

The Minor Basilica of the Immaculate Conception, better known as Manila Cathedral, is bathed in Ukrainian colors on Ash Wednesday as Pope Francis declared a day of prayer and fasting for peace in Ukraine. Jire Carreon, ABS-CBN News

MANILA—Cities around the world showed their support for a beleaguered Ukraine by lighting up in the colors of Ukraine, blue and yellow.

Several iconic Manila institutions have joined the global effort and are calling for peace.

On Wednesday, the Minor Basilica and the Metropolitan Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, also known as Manila Cathedral, were illuminated with blue and yellow lights to support the country fighting the invasion from Russia.

The move, the historic shrine explained, is also in solidarity with Pope Francis’ call to make Ash Wednesday a day of prayer and fasting for peace in Ukraine.

“We are one with the call of our Holy Father: ‘Let the guns be silent! God is with peacemakers, not with those who use violence,” Manila Cathedral wrote in a social media post.

The University of Santo Tomas, the oldest existing university in Asia, also shone on Wednesday night in the two-tone trend.

“Our national cultural treasures are illuminated in blue and yellow tonight in solidarity with our brothers and sisters in Ukraine. May hostilities cease as soon as possible to avoid further bloodshed. We pray for peace as we begin the time of Lent,” the university wrote on Facebook.

Earlier this week, century-old De La Salle University also shone in the sister group.

“The Lasallian community is one with the world in prayer for the safety of its people and for the immediate resolution of the political conflict,” the school wrote in a message.

The number of refugees fleeing conflict in Ukraine jumped to nearly 836,000, according to United Nations figures on Wednesday, as fighting intensified on the seventh day of the Russian invasion.

Since Russian troops arrived in Ukraine last week to carry out Russian President Vladimir Putin’s mission to overthrow the Western-leaning government of President Volodymyr Zelensky, hundreds of civilians have reportedly been killed.

The Russians have waged a massive bombing campaign and surrounded urban centers, but Ukraine insists no major city has yet been overrun. — With a report by Agence France-Presse


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