President Viktor Yushchenko held a meeting yesterday with Autonomous Republic of Crimea leadership. Verkhovna Rada Speaker Arseniy Yatsenyuk, ARC Parliament Speaker Anatoly P. Hrytsenko, ARC Prime Minister Viktor Plakida, and the newly appointed Representative of the President in ARC Leonid Zhunko took part in the meeting.

Participants of the meeting discussed social and economic situation in Crimea, propositions of modifications to 2008 budget, guaranteeing law and order regarding land issues, actions of the local authorities aimed at fighting corruption and political activity on the peninsula.

President expressed his critical opinion on Crimean authorities pointing to a number of urgent issues. Among the named were disregarding of national interests by Crimea authorities while making certain decisions in land area as well as revision by local councils of the Euro-Atlantic aimed vector of Ukrainian foreign policy along with language legislation thus in both cases violating the Ukrainian Constitution. Special concerns Viktor Yushchenko expressed about the precedents of anti-Ukrainian and anti-state public actions.

The President also urged Crimean authorities to pay more attention to population needs. As an example he gave situation with religious needs of Crimean Tatars. “I don’t see any legal grounds for prohibiting Tatars to erect their religious structures. I expect that I will be receiving no more appeals about the construction of a Cathedral Mosque in Simferopol. This issue should be solved on local authorities level instead of being put up on the level of the President,” he said.

Viktor Yushchenko also mentioned that there are many land issues to be solved such as preparation of land plots inventory, conducting land-survey, establishing confines for 51 settlements among which are Yalta, Alupka, Feodosiya, Foros, etc. Summarizing the meeting the President informed that the Secretariat will further on continue monitoring legislative acts which are adopted by the ARC Parliament and by the ARC Council of Ministers. Immediate reaction will be applied, if some of these laws contradict the Constitution.


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