German police said around 10,000 people took part in a protest in Berlin on Friday against Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Friday’s demonstration marked a year since Russia began its war in Ukraine. It ended at the Brandenburg Gate, which was illuminated in the blue and yellow colors of the Ukrainian flag.
Protesters also stopped by a destroyed Russian tank, which was installed outside the Russian embassy earlier in the day, to light candles and wave flags.
Similar political installations have also appeared outside Russian embassies, such as this one outside the Russian embassy in London.
Other countries also marked the occasion by lighting up buildings in the colors of the Ukrainian flag, such as in Paris which turned the Eiffel Tower blue and yellow.
Back in Berlin, protesters came from all sorts of backgrounds. Belarusian protester Artyom Merts said he took part in the protest “to support Ukraine”.
“Europe knows that Ukraine protects the world as a democracy because we stand against Russian aggression,” he added.
Ukrainian flags were carried and waved by members of the crowd. Flags from other European countries were also seen, including those of Finland, Romania and the EU.
Some of the protesters expressed their disagreement with Germany supplying arms to Ukraine. In January, Germany decided to send a batch of Leopard 2 battle tanks to Ukraine. Berlin was hesitant about its decision at the time, as the topic of helping Kiev was militarily divided opinion among the Germans.
Others, however, said they saw no alternative but to support Ukraine both with weapons and financially.
Konstantine Senin, a protester originally from Russia, expressed his dismay at Vladimir Putin’s war in Ukraine.
“What I feel my country (did) so much harm, (to) so many people. I almost cry,” he said.