#RussiaIsATerroristState: What one of the most popular hashtags on Twitter and Instagram is about?

“Russian Federation — a terrorist state. RF — the most disgusting war,” Mykhailo Podolyak, Adviser to the Head of the Office of President of Ukraine, tweeted on July 27 and put a #RussiaIsATerroristState hashtag. That day, to be more precise, in the middle of the day, the Russians struck Kremenchuk, the city in Poltava oblast, with two missiles. 

One of them completely destroyed the Amstor shopping mall, with over a thousand civilians inside at the time of the attack. The number of civilian casualties is terrifying: over 20 people were killed, 60 were injured, and more than 40 were reported missing by their relatives. The shopping mall is a public facility — it has nothing in common with military units.

It was one more act of Russian terrorism, a cynically planned and calculated criminal act.

“Only totally insane terrorists, who should have no place on earth, can strike missiles at civilian objects. And these are not off-target missile strikes at kindergartens, schools, shopping malls, and apartment buildings, these are calculated strikes of the invaders. Russia must be recognized as a state—sponsor of terrorism. The world can and therefore must stop Russian terror,”

Volodymyr Zelenskyy wrote the next day the attack on a shopping center in Kremenchuk was made. 

The President of Ukraine also called for the UN to define the term “terrorist state“ to recognize Russia’s missile strike in Kremenchuk as a terrorist act and punish the aggressor.

The Kremenchuk tragedy was not the first time people used the #RussiaIsATerroristState hashtag on their social media accounts to cover Russian war crimes. Every time the Russian army mercilessly attacks civilians, civilian objects, and infrastructure in Ukraine, Twitter, TikTok, Facebook, and Instagram are filled up with posts with the same hashtag. There are already almost 74,000 tweets and over 65,000 stories on Instagram accompanied by #RussiaIsATerroristState.

Most of those posts show destroyed residential and office buildings, kindergartens, hospitals, shopping malls, and other objects of civilian infrastructure, as well as dozens of dead people. They highlight Russian war crimes.

On July 14, Russian missiles struck the city of Vinnytsia in central Ukraine, killing at least 23 people, including three children.

After the Russian attack on the city center of Vinnytsia, President Zelenskyy once again called Ukraine’s partner countries to recognize Russia as a “terrorist state“ and impose more sanctions.

“This day (July 14) proved once again that Russia should be officially recognized as a terrorist state. No other state in the world poses such a terrorist threat as Russia. No other state in the world allows itself to destroy peaceful cities and ordinary human life with cruise missiles and rocket artillery every day,“

Zelenskyy said.

To support Ukraine in this unprovoked war which turned into genocide, activists from all over the world appeal to their governments to provide a weapon to Ukraine so it can defend itself. You can participate too.

  • Write a post on Tweets, Instagram, or Facebook about how Western countries can help.
  • Tag your officials or influential people who you think can support your appeal.
  • Use the hashtag #RussiaIsATerroristState.

Everybody can make a difference. Every voice has to be heard.