DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. — A Metro pastor is trying to help African students desperate to leave Ukraine who say they are being barred from fleeing the war-ravaged country because of their race.
Pastor Jamal Bryant, of the New Birth Missionary Baptist Church, posted the interaction on social media.
He said Channel 2’s Audrey Washington that he is now in contact with another pastor stuck in Ukraine as well.
From a small room in Ukraine, Nigerian pastor Dr. Promise Issac spoke to Bryant about what some of his parishioners are going through as they attempt to flee the country.
“Currently, I think we have around 10,000 African students in Ukraine,” Issac said. “What we have seen is that most African students have been blocked from entering at the borders.”
We haven’t independently confirmed all the details, but a video that emerged on social media appears to show a large group of African citizens trying to board a train from Ukraine.
Officials stand in front of the group.
Then you can see a woman reach for a child before they are both held back, along with the crowd. The train then pulls away.
For days now, African citizens, many of them students, living in Ukraine have reported instances of racism as they attempted to board trains and buses to Poland and Hungary.
On Monday, African nations on the United Nations Security Council publicly condemned discrimination against African citizens at the Ukrainian border.
“A lot of people mistakenly assumed racism was just American and didn’t realize it was truly a global pandemic,” Bryant said.
Washington asked Bryant what was being done to help get African citizens out of Ukraine safely.
“Both Nigeria and Ghana have representatives at the Polish border to escort them,” Bryant said.
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