PARSIPPANY, N.J. – On November 2, the Ukrainian Institute of America posted an explanation on its website after Facebook photos and videos showed a Russian flag hanging from the flagpole at the Fletcher-Sinclair Mansion in New York.
Titled, “Regarding the display of the Russian flag at the Ukrainian Institute,” the statement, signed by Dr. Daniel G. Swistel, president of the Ukrainian Institute of America, reads:
“The Ukrainian Institute of America rents out its facilities to independent organizations, including film companies, in order to provide funds for the maintenance of our landmark building and the Institute’s programs. A recent rental on November 2, 2018, involved the portrayal of a Russian Consulate facility for a network television series about a U.S. crime-fighting organization, and various portions of the Institute’s building were transformed to that effect. Because these are private rental arrangements, the Institute is usually not involved in the specifics of the decor during the rental. When it became clear that a Russian flag was being displayed on the exterior of the building, the film company was asked to remove the flag, and they complied. This particular rental has now been completed.”
The discussion in the comments section of the Facebook posts noted the inappropriateness of the Russian flag at the UIA and the need for an explanation to the community.