Ukraine prime minister calls on school pupils to leave VKontakte for Facebook

Ukraine prime minister calls on school pupils to leave VKontakte for Facebook
Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk (Image: Bundesministerium für Europa, Integration und Äusseres under a CC licence)

2 October 2015

Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk has called upon schoolchildren to switch from social network VKontakte to Facebook.

Mr Yatsenyuk made the statement during a visit to a Kiev school yesterday, as part of the Teachers’ Day festivities.

According to Ukrainian television channel 112 Ukraine, he recommended that pupils leave Vkontakte, which is based in St Petersburg in Russia, in favour of Facebook, citing what he claimed to be the Ukrainian roots of founder Mark Zuckerberg.

“I’m simply suggesting [...] move to Facebook if only because the founder Mark Zuckerberg’s family is from Odessa, and you have to support your own,” said Mr Yatsenyuk.

It is reported, however, that there is little evidence to support these claims regarding Mr Zuckerberg’s family heritage.

During his visit, the Ukrainian prime minister also suggested that students connect with their teachers over social media.

Dialogue between Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko and social media giant Facebook began in May 2015, when Mr Poroshenko requested that the company set up an office in Ukraine. Mr Zuckerberg stated that the company does not currently plan to establish an office in the country.


Source: Lenta (in Russian)