For several weeks Ukraine has been experiencing a protracted political crisis with the ground zero in the Independence Square. The situation changes every minute, and any forecasts are useless. On the other hand, there are grounds to believe that the peak of the conflict has passed, and time has come to seek solutions and compromises. In an interview with ForUm, Mykhailo Pohrebynski, director of the Kyiv center for political research and conflict management, gave his opinion on the events.

- Mykhailo Borysovych, how would you estimate the situation Ukraine finds itself today?

- I would say today there is a hope for overcoming the deadlock, both parties brought us into. Yesterday (December 9), the parties demonstrated readiness for a dialogue and peaceful behavior - the government quarter was professionally cleared from protesters, and the latter did not engage into any fights. Thus, it gives a hope that a compromised decision may be found after all.

- Can we use the notion "revolution" when describing current events?

- Of course not. I would say there is only one revolutionary - Tyagnybok. He follows the position that we need national revolution, that we need nationalists to clear the territory from "extraneous elements" and "fifth column" and so on and so forth. In short, according to him, we need blood. And if his plans were realized, we would have a true revolution, but in the 21st century and in a European country such revolutions are improbable. As for moderate revolutionaries like Yatseniuk and Klichko, do you really think things would change if they came to power now. Not at all, the same old capitalism, but with different people ruling.

- Do you think the roundtable, summoned by Presidents of Ukraine, will give any positive results?

- I think this roundtable of Presidents is absolutely senseless, simply because the very organizers have no influence on it. Their position is well known. Kravchuk, for example, will follow the side of power and energy, though we would stand against Russia. Yushchenko, regardless of power, will take the anti-Russian side. Kuchma will try to maneuver, but he has no influence anyway. 

- What are possible scenarios of further development of events?

- I think that arrival of Victoria Nuland (Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs at the United States Department of State) and Catherine Ashton (High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy for the European Union) will play certain deterrent role. The opposition will make more realistic demands, and the authorities will agree on negotiations. And I really hope that this process will end within the next two weeks, before Catholic Christmas, and that both parties will make concessions. I strongly believe that we should follow recommendations of the European parliament, which says democratic political forces must distance themselves from right-wing extremists of "Freedom". It means the authorities agree on thorough investigations, prosecution of the responsible, dismissal of certain officials, but in turn the opposition distances itself from "Freedom". 

Valentyna Dudko


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