"Dear Ukrainian army, dear Ukrainian Armed Forces, dear National Guard - Happy birthday! Because the operation in Sloviansk ... the operation in Druzhkivka ... the operation in the Donbas is the birth of the Ukrainian national army," he told reporters in Sloviansk, the Donetsk region.
Poroshenko called the current fighting in eastern Ukraine the battle for Ukrainian independence. "What is happening now is the fight for Ukrainian independence. This is how a nation is hardened. I congratulate myself and Ukraine, congratulations on the birthday, second birthday after Ukrainian independence," Poroshenko said.