Image - Over 32,000 spectators of the Ukrainian National Choir concert in Mexico City on 26 December 1922. Image - Oleksander Koshyts with Mexican composers M. de Pons and Ledro de Tejada in Mexico City, 1922.

Mexico [Мексика; Meksyka]. A country in Latin America (2020 pop 128,649,565), with an area of 1,972,550 sq km. Mexico City is the capital. The foreign intervention force that helped install and maintain Archduke Maximilian of Austria as emperor of Mexico (1864–67) included soldiers recruited in the eastern crown lands of the Habsburg Empire, but the number of Ukrainians among them has not been established. According to western Ukrainian newspapers in 1928, apparently 2,000 Ukrainians from Poland and Czechoslovakia had come to Mexico in the years following the First World War. Another source asserts that the Ukrainian community in Mexico numbered 250 people in 1925. The details are sketchy, but it is clear that the Ukrainian immigration had a transient nature and encountered difficult conditions. A number of those who remained in the country formed the Society of the Ukrainian Nation (Tovarystvo Ukrainskoho Narodu/Sociedad de la Nación Ucraniana) in Mexico City on 31 December 1924. It comprised 35 members. Among the members were Pavlo Stasiuk, Ivan Kravtsiv, Kuzma Putys, Mykhailo Voinovych, Oles Senkivsky, Mykhailo Temesh, and Bohdan Borys. In 1922 the Ukrainian Republican Kapelle under the direction of Oleksander Koshyts performed in Mexico and staged more than twenty concerts in three weeks.

Diplomatic relations between Mexico and Ukraine were established in 1992. President Leonid Kuchma undertook a state visit of Mexico in September 1997. Mexico opened an honourary consulate in Kyiv in 2000. Ukraine opened its embassy in Mexico in February 2004. Mexican President Vicente Fox Quesada, accompanied by a delegation of Mexican business leaders, conducted a state visit of Ukraine in June 2005 and announced plans to open a Ukrainian embassy in Kyiv and boost bilateral co-operation in mineral fertilizers production, aircraft construction, and space exploration. Mexico’s exports to and imports from Ukraine in 2004 were valued at $1.1 million US (845,000 euros) and $246 million US (188.9 million euros), respectively. During his visit to Ukraine, President Fox mentioned that the Mexican literature scholar Boris Rosen Jelomer and the physicist Marcos Moshinsky were born in Ukraine.

Kravcheniuk, Osyp. ‘Ukraintsi na Kubi i u Meksiko,’ Narodna volia (19 September 1985)
Lencyk Pawliczko, Ann. ‘Ukrainians in Cuba and Mexico’ in Ukraine and Ukrainians throughout the World: A Demographic and Sociological Guide to the Homeland and its Diaspora, edited by Ann Lencyk Pawliczko (Toronto, Buffalo, and London 1994)

Serge Cipko

[This article was written in 2018.]

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