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Donetsk mayor says Kiev pursues wrong policy

Donetsk mayor Alexander Lukyanchenko says he hopes Ukraine's government and parliament will hear people in Donbas and southeast
Protesters in Donetsk ITAR-TASS/Mikhail Pochuev
Protesters in Donetsk
© ITAR-TASS/Mikhail Pochuev

DONETSK, April 08. /ITAR-TASS/. Donetsk mayor Alexander Lukyanchenko has blamed Kiev for pursuing the wrong policy, saying it is the reason behind protests in the southeast of the country.

"New Ukrainian authorities do not quite understand what is happening in Donetsk now," Lukyanchenko said on Tuesday. "Indeed, the seizure of administrative buildings is illegal and bad. Separatist slogans that were voiced in city squares are unacceptable. Yet all these problems are a consequence of the new authorities' incorrect policy, their unwillingness to look into the problems to understand them," the mayor's press office quoted him as saying.

A recent statement by parliament-appointed Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk did not contain "specific proposals" to improve the situation, such as the measures to protect the Russian language, ensure election of governors or explain the delegation of powers in decentralization procedure.

Lukyanchenko said "the answers to these questions were needed yesterday."

"I'm hoping the government and the parliament will hear people in Donbas (Donetsk and adjacent regions) and southeast. If they don't, and if people do not get answers to their questions, they will continue to hope for the protection of the neighboring state," the mayor said.

He noted that the new authorities "should understand that negotiating with people implies discussion of the accumulated problems, the problems that did not emerge overnight."

"Only then will people be able to say that Donbas is (part of) Ukraine," he said.