KIEV, January 25 (Itar-Tass) - A leading Ukrainian political scientist believes that the West is determined to retaliate for President Viktor Yanukovich’s refusal to sign the association agreement with the European Union, and for that reason the EU has been employing “all possible tools” to make life harder for him.
“It is easy to guess how strongly the European bureaucracy and some European politicians were disappointed, when at the very last minute Yanukovich decided against concluding the association agreement,” the director of the Kiev-based Centre of Political Studies and Conflictology, Mikhail Pogrebinsky, told Itar-Tass in an interview. “They felt they had been deceived, so their reaction was hysterical.”
The expert believes that from the outset Europe did not have a shade of doubt it might be wrong somewhere, that some sort of compensations might be appropriate, and that possibly Russia’s interests may have to be taken into account somehow.
The first reaction from the West, says Pogrebinsky, looked like this: “We have been deceived, so we shall use every resource at hand to create as many problems as possible for Yanukovich.”
Pogrebinsky pointed to Poland’s Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski, Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt and the Baltic countries as the masterminds of the current campaign.
“High-ranking officials from the Baltic countries have been coming here to speak in front of protesting crowds and to support an insurgency against the existing authorities,” Pogrebinsky said.
Should a parliamentary speaker from a neighbouring state dare say during a visit to a neighbouring country, a small one but with a sense of dignity, that he supports the opposition there, he would certainly have to forget about ever entering that country again, the political scientist said.
Pogrebinsky remarked it was quite obvious to him that the Western policy towards Ukraine was confined to ousting the current authorities.
“They claim that white is black and that rioters are peaceful demonstrators,” Pogrebinsky said. He recalled that six weeks ago protesters seized some administrative buildings, including the Kiev Mayor’s office, but Western officials kept claiming that it was a crackdown by the authorities. Now they say they do not like the laws the Ukrainian parliament voted for on January 16. “First they should have said that they do not like administrative buildings being stormed. Only after that they would possibly have some grounds to criticise a legal act that does not look as good as they would like it to be,” Pogrebinsky said.
The disputed package of laws agrees with the European norms, the analyst said. As for the current visit to Kiev by the European Commissioner for Enlargement and European Neighbourhood Policy Stefan Fule, the analyst said he was expecting “absolutely nothing” from it. On Friday, Fule met with Yanukovich. No details were immediately available.