As Ukraine's parliamentary campaign reaches its half-way point,
there are increasing concerns that some may not want a free and
Attempts to reintroduce undemocratic practices,
such as the much-abused home voting privileges of 2004, are
threatening to derail Ukraine's fledgling democracy less than
three years since the population took to the streets to overturn
a rigged presidential election.
In mid-August, several international election monitoring
organizations began working in Ukraine in advance of the
extraordinary September 30 parliamentary elections. Their timing
couldn't have been better. Even as campaign monitors began to
deploy in all regions of the country, the Central Election
Commission (CEC) issued a series of rulings that both confounded
and concerned election specialists. Domestically, the rulings
also galvanised the country's opposition against what it labeled
"political repression" and "subversion of the democratic process."
The decision that provoked the biggest question was the
initial refusal of the CEC to register the candidates of the
opposition Bloc of Yulia Tymoshenko (BYUT). If upheld, the
ruling could have led to the exclusion of the country's largest
opposition bloc from the election.
This decision reportedly led to a number of concerned
telephone calls from Western diplomats to Ukraine's leaders.
European People's Party President Wilfried Martens publicly
suggested that the CEC ruling violated "not only the legal
system but also the free will of the Ukrainian people." Adrian
Severin, the chairman of the EU-Ukraine Interparliamentary
Cooperation Committee, warned that election observers "will
monitor very carefully whether all political forces are assured
equal and fair conditions of participation in the Ukrainian
Three days after the initial decision, Kyiv's Administrative
Court satisfied BYUT's claims against the CEC, calling the
decision "illegal." The next day, BYUT was registered.
There was little doubt that the court would find in favour of
the opposition bloc, given the shaky grounds on which the
registration was initially refused. CEC members suggested that
BYUT had not met electoral requirements when it included the
postal addresses of its candidates on the wrong form. The
addresses were submitted on the candidates' biographies, while
only their region of residence was placed on their official
requests to register.
Bloc leader Yulia Tymoshenko countered that the registration
forms were submitted in the same manner as in 2006, when the
bloc was easily registered for that year's parliamentary
elections. She immediately charged that the decision was purely
political and pointed out that no electoral regulation or law
exists to govern the way in which addresses are submitted.
Indeed, an examination of the CEC's own regulations and forms
shows that a concrete postal address is specifically requested
on the biographies, but not on the registration forms.
While the swift and unwavering judgment of the court in this
matter is encouraging, the CEC's original decision was viewed
immediately by many Western officials as a potentially dangerous
signal for the fairness of the upcoming election.
The home voting question
The concern of election observers was compounded when, on the
same day that BYUT was registered, the CEC voted to allow a home
voting procedure similar to that used during the discredited
first two rounds of the 2004 presidential elections. That
procedure, which was said by the Organization for Security and
Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) to have been a "major source of
electoral fraud" in 2004, allows ballots to be cast in homes
with little control and under the watch of potentially biased
The "home" ballot in Ukraine is intended to be used by
disabled voters who are unable to travel to the polling place.
In 2004, hundreds of thousands of ballots were found to have
been cast at home, with the figure reaching as high as 30% of
votes cast in some oblasts. These figures dwarf the percentage
of the population with disabilities impeding their ability to
travel, according to observers. In fact, in 2004, as home ballot
boxes were removed from the polling precincts and kept generally
out of view of monitors, it was impossible to know where the
ballots inside these ballot boxes came from and who marked them.
In order to deal with this concern, in 2005 Ukraine began
requiring medical certificates in order to receive approval for
home voting. The CEC's new ruling would eliminate this safeguard.
On 22 August, Kyiv's Administrative Court supported an appeal
filed by the country's second opposition bloc,
Our-Ukraine-People's Self-Defense (OU-PSD), against the CEC
decision. BYUT also joined the lawsuit. The court ordered the
CEC to require medical certificates, but the CEC promptly
appealed the decision. All sides are awaiting the decision of
the appeals court. If home voting is conducted as it was in
2004, this could "open the door to significant falsification of
votes," according to a newly released pre-election assessment
from the US-based National Democratic Institute for
International Affairs (NDI).
No to a referendum?
The CEC also halted a plan by BYUT to try to collect enough
signatures to hold a referendum on proposed constitutional
changes simultaneously with the parliamentary elections. As per
procedures for triggering a popular referendum, BYUT filed
petitions from several hundred "citizen initiative groups"
endorsing the referendum questions and asking to be allowed to
begin collecting the required three million signatures in
support. The CEC refused their requests, suggesting that the
proposed questions could not be the subject of popular votes,
according to the Constitution.
In fact, Ukraine's Constitution prohibits referenda questions
on territorial change, amnesty of individuals, taxes and the
budget. The questions proposed by BYUT -- asking primarily
whether judges should be elected or appointed, if parliamentary
immunity should be eliminated, if the parliamentary opposition
should receive official status, and if the voters prefer a
presidential or parliamentary republic -- clearly do not fit
within these prohibitions. Therefore, while it is doubtful that
a referendum could be organised in time for 30 September, it is
unclear why the CEC prohibited the simple attempt to collect
BYUT has filed yet another court appeal, requesting that the
Administrative Court order the CEC to allow signature collection.
The number of court appeals filed within such a short time led
NDI, in its assessment, to note concern "about future problems
in election administration if the CEC and other commissions
cannot work collegially." The Institute's delegation, which
included former Congressman and House Democratic Caucus Chair
Martin Frost and former United Nations Assistant Secretary
General Cedric Thornberry, noted that "partisanship might lead
to unnecessary obstacles to certifying election results. This
would severely undermine Ukrainians" confidence in those results.?
Down with the billboards
On the evening of August 18, Yulia Tymoshenko announced that
her bloc's billboards had been removed in several areas of Kyiv.
She suggested that the advertising company controlling the
billboards had come under pressure from Kyiv's mayor, who is
allied with Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych. Tymoshenko has
vowed to work to impeach Mayor Leonid Chernovetsky, and has led
numerous blockades of Kyiv City Council meetings. The owner of
the advertising agency denied Tymoshenko's charge, and there is
no clear evidence of Chernovetsky's involvement. But the agency
provided no reason why recently installed advertising suddenly
would have been removed in the middle of the night over the
objection of the advertiser.
The battle for the east
Tymoshenko's allies suggest that pressure against her bloc
may have increased because of her attempt to increase support
for BYUT in several eastern regions that have traditionally
favoured Yanukovych. These areas include the regions of
Dnipropetrovsk, where Tymoshenko was raised; Kirovohrad, where
Tymoshenko's numbers have shown increases over the last two
elections; Luhansk, which is the home base of a number of
highly-placed candidates on the BYUT list; and Kharkiv and
Zaporizhya, which boast some of the country's most active
Tymoshenko also recently signed an agreement to form a
coalition government with the Our Ukraine-People's Self-Defense
Bloc, should they together achieve a majority in the elections.
This agreement could put an end to divisions among former Orange
Revolution leaders -- divisions which led to the loss of the
majority in 2006. President Viktor Yushchenko is the honorary
leader of OU-PSD and has taken an active role in supporting the
party's rejuvenation after its third place finish one year ago.
Yushchenko has been embroiled in a fierce power struggle with
Yanukovych since the latter was able to patch together a
parliamentary majority, which then nominated him to the prime
minister's chair. Ukraine's parliamentary-presidential
government provides significant and sometimes overlapping powers
to both the Prime Minister and the President.
Polls indicate that support for the Tymoshenko-Yushchenko
tandem currently equals that for a Yanukovych-Communist Party
coalition. Should the pro-presidential coalition win, Tymoshenko
could well replace Yanukovych as prime minister.
Tymoshenko's removal from the election, then, would not be
unwelcome to Yanukovych or his allies. OU-PSD so far seems to
have escaped the recent pressure apparently being exerted on
BYUT. This is likely because of the bloc's concentration on
western areas less contested by the governing coalition, and
because of its generally more moderate tone.
However, during the spring, OU-PSD leader Yuriy Lutsenko saw
his home and office searched by state security services for
reasons that were never adequately explained. The searches came
on the heels of an announcement by Lutsenko that he would
organize a major demonstration against the government.
BYUT and OU-PSD both have reported worrying break-ins at
several of their regional headquarters in recent months. BYUT,
in particular, has seen two break-ins in the last several weeks.
The office of Kyiv City Council and BYUT election staff member
Oleksandr Bryhinets was broken into and a computer stolen and
burglars stole documents and digital storage devices from BYUT's
local headquarters in Malyniv, Zhitomir.
Both BYUT and OU-PSD also saw their Kharkiv region offices
ransacked over the summer. These incidents appear unconnected
and neither systemic nor systematic. However, such problems have
not been reported by political parties in Ukraine since
President Leonid Kuchma left office in January of 2005.
Still cause for optimism
Nevertheless, while the recent actions of certain officials
may be worrying, all international observation missions note
clearly that Ukraine overall has made impressive strides on its
path toward consolidating its nascent democracy. The incidents
noted above were all reported in Ukraine's mass media, to which
all political blocs have access.
In spite of questionable CEC decisions, all blocs currently
have a relatively equal opportunity to campaign. (This equality
is tempered, of course, by the "incumbent advantage" provided to
both Prime Minister Yanukovych and President Yushchenko.) Unlike
during the parliamentary election of 2002 or the presidential
campaign of 2004, opposition members are not being pursued by
security officials, denied television air time, placed in jail,
forced into car accidents, or restricted from traveling to
In fact, the level of real political competition and
contestation meets or exceeds that found in most European
countries. Journalists, too, are freer, even if press freedom is
sometimes hindered by local officials and the relatively
liberated Ukrainian press community continues to question the
The hurdles placed in front of BYUT in the last two weeks
stand out because they do not fit within the norm that has
developed in Ukraine over the last two years. This, in itself,
is worrying. The CEC's overturned decisions underscore the
fragility of Ukraine's democracy.
There are five weeks remaining before voters choose the
people and parties that will form their next government. Have
the problems and irregularities of the last three weeks been a
small bump on the road, or is it a sign of real regression?
International observers will be watching to see if the country
is truly able to conduct an election that meets European
standards for freedom and fairness.
Tammy Lynch is a Senior Research Fellow at
Boston University's Institute for the Study of Conflict,
Ideology & Policy and a regular international commentator on
September 4, 2007
By Jan Maksymiuk
The Verkhovna Rada gathered for a session today, in spite of
having been formally disbanded by President Viktor Yushchenko.
Parliament speaker Oleksandr Moroz said he wants parliament
to address the issue of stripping parliamentary deputies and
senior government officials of their immunity from prosecution
and other privileges before preterm elections on September 30.
Yushchenko called today's session illegitimate and
politically meaningless, but Moroz assured those present in the
session hall that their gathering is fully lawful and
According to Moroz, the Ukrainian parliament is
constitutionally obliged to open its fall session on the first
Tuesday in September.
Moroz also cited another constitutional provision requiring
that the legislature remains operational until newly elected
lawmakers take their oath of office.
However, Moroz failed to mention the constitutional provision
stipulating that the Verkhovna Rada is a full-fledged
legislative body only when it has no fewer than 300 deputies.
A Legitimate Session?
It was Moroz himself who, with President Yushchenko and Prime
Minister Viktor Yanukovych, struck a political deal in May to
disband the Verkhovna Rada and set early elections, following
the voluntary resignation of deputies from the pro-presidential
Yulia Tymoshenko Bloc and Our Ukraine.
The subsequent resignation of pro-presidential lawmakers
brought the number of deputies in the 450-seat legislature below
300, allowing Yushchenko to issue two decrees, on June 5 and
August 1, scheduling early polls for September 30.
[ ... ]
Risk of Chaos
If the session was objectionable from a legal point of view,
and without any practical meaning, was it actually worth holding
for the ruling coalition?
According to Moroz, it was necessary to open the session
within the constitutionally prescribed terms. "We cannot
disregard the risk of preplanned chaos in governance, in which,
following undesirable election results gained by some
participants in the election campaign, the newly elected
Verkhovna Rada would not be able to become legitimate," Moroz
In this somewhat cryptic manner, Moroz appears to have
expressed the fear shared by many observers of the Ukrainian
political scene that the September 30 election results could be
contested in court by any party dissatisfied with its election
performance. They warn that it will be easy to cast doubt on the
election results due to procedural mistakes and legal
irregularities in the electoral process.
Thus, if the elections fail to receive official recognition,
Moroz may hope for the continued existence of the current
legislature, in which his Socialist Party has more than 30
Current opinion surveys in Ukraine suggest that the September
30 polls may consign the Socialist Party to political oblivion.
28 Aug 2007
Ukraine will (again!) hold elections next month. Many of the
people I talk to seem to believe that they will not decide much.
One wonders what BBC Ukrainian service readers think?
Reaction in Washington to the April decree disbanding
parliament was, to say the least, mixed. One group, maybe more
pro-orange, said "Finally Yushchenko has shown some
Another group, maybe one more closely supportive of the grand
coalition, saw his decree as unnecessary because the anti-crisis
coalition would have never obtained a 300 constitutional
majority. And it was a threat to the rule of law and
This question we can leave for future historians. The more
important question today is what will the elections change?
If I were to meet President Yushchenko in person I would ask
him only one question: "Did you go on holiday in the first two
years of your presidency and then return to find not everything
to your satisfaction?" The first two years of the orange
president were largely wasted, especially the first year under
the old constitution when the president had extensive powers.
The make up of the newly elected parliament will not change
that decisively except that there will be four, not five,
parties. A priest will have to be called to do a pana khyda over
the Socialist Party.
Which brings me to probably the main outcome of this year's
elections. They will also decide who will be Ukraine's next
president. Will Yushchenko follow Leonid Kravchuk in only
serving one term or Leonid Kuchma in serving two?
Indeed, the more moral question is does Yushchenko, after
wasting his first two years, deserve to be re-elected for a
second term? How do we not know that if he is re-elected he will
not again go on an extended holiday break in 2010-2012, as he
did in 2005-2006?
Ukraine needs a rishuche president. Of this I have no doubt.
In reaching this conclusion I am influenced by my personal
preferences (I fully admit that I admire Margaret Thatcher and
Nicolas Sarkozy), I know Ukraine's problems and what is required
for Ukraine to integrate into Europe. Plus, it is pretty obvious
to me which Ukrainian political leader is both rishuche and
Sarkozy visited the U.S. recently and flew home for an
important meeting but then returned to the U.S. to continue his
meetings there. That is what I call rishuchist!
That is why I remain suspicious of Yushchenko's motives. Is
he only now rishuche because he wants to maintain his hold on to
The mandate of an orange president did not just come from the
ballot box but also from the one fifth of Ukraine's population
who participated in the orange revolution. They gave Yushchenko
a mandate for CHANGE. It is the lack of change that has
disillusioned many Ukrainians, particularly young people.
Many of the president's proposals look surprisingly similar
to Kuchma's in the April 2001 referendum: a bicameral parliament,
lifting immunity from deputies and reducing the number of
deputies. Party of Regions will never go for a bicameral Rada as
this would mean each oblast, regardless of population size,
would send the same number of Senators. Ternopil would have
equality with Donetsk.
In principle I have no problem in removing parliamentary
immunity. But, how will this help overcome Ukraine's general
entrenched immunity for all Ukrainian elites (inside and outside
parliament) from criminal prosecution?
Senior Ukrainian officials have never gone to jail in Ukraine
regardless of whether they had immunity inside the Rada or did
not because they were outside parliament. Only 3 senior
Ukrainians currently sit in jail -- two in Germany and one in
the US. All 3 were foolish to not stay in Ukraine where they
could have continued to sit in parliament or run businesses
without any legal problems.
After this years elections the same poorly reformed
constitution remains in place. Yushchenko and Our
Ukraine-Samoborona agree with the three parties in the
anti-crisis coalition to not hold a referendum on the
constitution on the same day as the elections.
In November 2005 the Constitutional Court ruled that a
referendum should be held on the constitutional changes but this
was always ignored. Only BYuT upholds the constitutional court's
ruling in supporting a constitutional referendum.
Lets remember that the president has been unable to work with
two of his three prime ministers. Will he now be able to work
with either Yanukovych or Tymoshenko?
A final problem is the often repeated claim that Yushchenko's
mandate was weak as his opponent received only 8% fewer votes.
This is not a serious argument. Polls in the last years of
Kuchma's rule showed that two thirds to three quarters of
Ukrainians wanted change. In other words, a portion of
Yanukovych voters (maybe what we call floating or soft voters)
also desired change.
In reality Yushchenko's mandate was far higher than that for
Sarkozy in France who won only 6% more votes than his Socialist
rival (53 to 47%). In the U.S. Bush was elected with even more
low majorities of only 3% in 2004 (51 to 48%) and with only a 1%
victory in 2000 over his Democratic Party challengers (see the
funny video here).
Yushchenko therefore had a large mandate for change that he
has not implemented. I doubt whether he would do so if
re-elected in two years time.
This is also true of Our Ukraine ministers who went into
government and now head Our Ukraine-Samoborona. Despite lots of
election rhetoric today I do not remember Yuriy Lutsenko
adopting radical changes inside the Interior Ministry.
Two policies that he should have adopted immediately should
have been to replace the ridiculous name "Militsya" with
"Police" and return the Internal Troops to becoming a National
Guard, as most of their units were in the 1990s. Countries do
not get invited into Europe if they have Militsyas or troops
designed to put down their own populations.
I remain doubtful if this year's elections will change
Ukraine. The only manner in which the change promised by the
orange revolution could be implemented is if an attractive lady
is returned as prime minister and Yushchenko supports her
policies designed to implement change (rather than obstruct them
as he tried to do while he was on holiday in 2005).
If she does not become prime minister again this year then
she deserves to replace Yushchenko as president. Yulia gave him
his chance when she did not run in 2004 but, as the Americans
say, he blew it.
Yulia could become Ukraine's Thatcher or Sarkozy --
Yushchenko will always be a Chirac. Maybe a woman can do what a
man could never.
Roman Olearchyk in Kyiv
September 3 2007
Ukraine's wealthiest man, Rinat Akhmetov, has significantly
increased his interest in a large electricity generating
company through a controversial debt-for-equity transaction
that has cast a shadow over Kyiv's ability to privatise
state assets transparently.
With snap parliamentary
elections just weeks away, the deal has taken on political
Opposition parties have cried foul, alleging the sale was
fixed in favour of a businessman close to Ukraine's premier,
Viktor Yanukovich, and have pledged to challenge it.
Foreign investors who had their shares diluted through
the deal are also upset.
The deal is not expected to scare off the record amounts
of foreign investment flowing into Ukraine in recent years.
However, it has left many wondering if Kyiv will improve its
record on privatisations and put foreign investors on an
Officials representing the state's interest in
Dnipro-energo agreed last week to a 52 per cent share
capital increase, boosting Mr Akhmetov's interest more than
four times to about 40 per cent. The stake has been valued
at $400m to $500m.
[ .. ]
Opposition politicians, with an eye on the snap
parliamentary elections at the end of September, have said
the deal illustrates how Mr Yanukovich's government kowtows
to the interests of allied business tycoons. Mr Akhmetov is
an influential member of Mr Yanukovich's Regions party.
"We see how this government is working in tandem with
business," said Yulia Tymoshenko, a former prime minister
and leader of the opposition Byut bloc, which trails closely
behind Regions with 25 to 30 per cent of voter support.
The Dniproenergo transaction is the latest in a string of
controversial privatisation tenders through which domestic
and Russian businessmen have grabbed prized assets at
Ms Tymoshenko's bloc warned that the government might
tender prized assets to allies through rushed sales during
the political campaign before being swept out of power.
Ms Tymoshenko said her party would seek to reverse bogus
sales as she did during her brief 2005 tenure as premier
following the Orange Revolution, when her government
reversed the sale of Ukraine's flagship steel mill,
Kryvorizhstal, sold controversially in 2004 during Mr
Yanukovich's first tenure as premier.
Mr Akhmetov and a partner bought the Kryvorizhstal mill
for $800m in a tender process that excluded foreign bidders.
It was resold in 2005 to Mittal Steel for $4.8bn.
Godt en uge før ukrainerne skal vælge et nyt parlament
viser en dugfrisk meningsmåling fra Centret for sociologisk
www.spr.org.ua i Kyiv,
at den tidligere parlamentsformand Volodymyr Lytvyns
midterblok "Blok Lytvyna" bliver tungen på vægtskålen i et
parlament, hvor hverken den blå eller den orange blok opnår
et klart flertal. Socialisterne, som har været tungen på
vægtskålen i det sidste halvandet år, står til at ryge ud af
parlamentet. Meningsmålingen bygger på følgende spørgsmålet
stillet til et repræsentativt udsnit af den ukrainske
befolkning i dagene 1.-10. september 2007:
Hvilket parti vil du stemme
på? (i procent)
||Ca. antal pladser
Ukraine - Folkets Selvforsvar
blok - 36,5%
blok - 3,6%
||I alt pladser
Samtidig blev vælgerne
spurgt om deres tillid til politikerne og deres syn på
Ukraines internationale rolle. Her følger resultaterne af
Hvilken af disse politikere
har du tillid til ? (i procent)
N. Vitrenko – 8.7
V. Lytvyn – 15.8
Yu. Lutsenko – 20.3
O. Moroz – 7.7
P. Symonenko – 14.7
L. Suprun – 3.4
Y. Tymosjenko – 29.7
V. Janukovytsj – 33.3
Anden politiker – 2.6
Fandt det svært at svare –
Ingen af dem - 16.5
Hvilken af disse politikere
ville du gerne have som Ukraines statsminister? (i procent)
N. Vitrenko – 1.0
V. Lytvyn – 3.9
Yu. Lutsenko – 4.3
O. Moroz – 0.9
P. Symonenko – 2.4
L. Suprun – 0.5
Y. Tymosjenko – 24.1
V. Janukovytsj – 31.7
Anden politiker – 1.2
Fandt det vanskelligt at
svare – 20.7
Ingen af de dem – 9.4
Støtter du ideen at
Ukraine skal forblive neutralt og ikke være medlem af nogen
militær blok? (i procent)
Ja – 62.5
Nej – 16.1
Vanskeligt at svare – 21.4
Er du enig med at en stor
opmærksomhed skal lægges på Ukraines tilslutning til EU? (i
Ja – 44.7
Nej – 26.1
Vanskeligt at svare –
Ukraines centrale valgkommission har besluttet at forbyde
præsident Viktor Jusjtjenko at deltage i valgkampen til
støtte for blokken "Vores Ukraine-Folkets Selvforvar" og har
pålagt præsidenten at afholde sig fra at føre valgkamp op
Den centrale valgkommission traf beslutningen natten til
lørdag på baggrund af en klage fra Det socialistiske parti.
Valgkommissionen mener, at Jusjtjenkos deltagelse i
valgkampen i form af offentlige opfordringer til at stemme
for blokken "Vores Ukraine-Folkets Selvforvar" er en
lovovertrædelse samt en krænkelse af borgernes
valgrettigheder og af de legitime interesser, som de
involverede parter har i valget. Desuden mener
valgkommissionen, at præsidentens agitation er uforenelig
med hans status som statens overhoved.
Derudover har valgkommissionen pålagt Jusjtjenko at
afholde sig fra valgkampsagitation under valgkampen. "Interfaks-Ukrajina".
30. sep. 2007 00.54 Udland
Opdat.: 30. sep. 2007 01.16
I dag går ukrainerne til valgurnerne for femte gang i
løbet af kun tre år
De 37 millioner vælgere skal sammensætte et nyt
parlament, som de fleste håber kan bringe landet ud et halvt
års politisk lammelse.
Men de færreste tror, at valget giver et klart flertal
til partierne omkring den reform- og vestvenlige præsident
Viktor Jusjtjenko eller til den prorussiske og mindre
reformvenlige premierminister Viktor Janukovitj.
Magtkampen op i en spids
De to fløje er nogenlunde lige store. Under valgkampen er
uenigheden spidset til i en sådan grad, at et kompromis hen
over midten synes umulig.
Parlamentsvalget blev udskrevet, efter at præsident
Viktor Jusjtjenko og premierminister Viktor Janukovitj i
måneder havde bekriget hinanden og forsøgt at begrænse
Magtkampen gik op i en spids kort efter nytår, og lammede
helt det politiske liv frem til begyndelsen af april, hvor
Jusjtjenko opløste parlamentet og udskrev nyvalg.
Blå mod orange
Premierminister Viktor Janukovitj leder Regionernes Parti,
og har i et år ledet en regeringskoalition, kaldet de blå,
bestående af hans eget parti, Socialistpartiet og
Kommunistpartiet. Koalitionen overlever næppe valget søndag,
da både Socialistpartiet og kommunisterne ser ud til at ryge
ud. Regionernes Parti ventes at få mellem 30 og 38 procent.
Over for den blå alliance står en koalition af orange
partier, som støtter præsident Viktor Jusjtjenko. Han ses
som mere reformvenlig og liberal med et ønske om at gøre
Ukraine mere demokratisk og føre landet ind i EU og NATO.
Jusjtjenko var Orangerevolutionens helt og står stadig i
spidsen for partiet Vort Ukraine. Vort Ukraine, der har sin
højborg i den vestlige del af landet, står til mellem 10 og
15 procent af stemmerne.
Den orange koalition omfatter også tidligere
premierminister Julia Timosjenko og partiet, som er opkaldt
efter hende - Blok Timosjenko.
Hun er uden konkurrence Ukraines mest farverige og mest
polariserende politiker. På valgmøder tryllebinder hun
tilhængere, mens modstandere raser mod hende.
Hendes vigtigste budskab er kamp mod korruption, bedre
sociale forhold og bekæmpelse af rige oligarker. Blok
Timosjenko stor til mellem 20 og 30 procent af stemmerne og
har sin højborg i det midterste Ukraine omkring hovedstaden
De landsdækkende ukrainske exit polls tyder på, at de
orange partier - Julia Tymoshenkos blok og "Vores Ukraine -
Folkets selvforsvar" generobrer flertallet i det ukrainske
parlament med Julis Tymoshenko som den sandsynlige nye
premierminister. Gasprinsessen, som hun også kaldes har
siden valget i 2002 femdoblet sin tilslutning og leverer
også denne gang et overraskende godt valgresultat med over
31% af stemmerne - kun få procentpoint efter "Regionernes
parti". Nedenfor bringes valgresultatet ifølge gennemsnittet
af de landsdækkende ukrainske exit-polls.
Regionernes Parti - 35%
Julia Tymoshenkos Blok - 32%
Vores Ukraine - Folkets Selvforsvar - 14%
Kommunistpartiet - 5%
Lytvyns Blok - 4%
Inge af de øvrige partier kommer over spærregrænsen. Dog
er Socialistpartiet tættest på med 2,5% af stemmerne.
Resultatet af exit-pollsene giver følgende fordeling af
pladserne i det ukrainske parlament:
Regionernes Parti - 174 pladser
Julia Tymoshenkos Blok - 160 pladser
Vores Ukraine - Folkets Selvforsvar - 71 pladser
Kommunistpartiet - 25 pladser
Lytvyns Blok - 20 pladser
||Ca. antal pladser
Ukraine - Folkets Selvforsvar
blok - 46%
blok - 4%
Den politiske ledelse i blokken "Vores Ukraine - Folkets
Selvforsvar" har udpeget Vjatjeslav Kyrylenko til at være
leder af forhandlingerne om skabelsen af en demokratisk
koalition med Julia Tymoshenkos blok. Vjatjeslav Kyrylenko
var nr. to på blokken "Vores Ukraine - Folkets Selvforsvar"s
stemmeseddel efter lederen af blokken, Jurij Lutsenko.
Lutsenko har udtalt sig meget positivt om Julia Tymoshenko
som premierminister. Kyrylenko er kendt for at have en
mere skeptisk holdning til Tymoshenko - en holdning, der er
kendetegnende for kredsen omkring præsident Jusjtjenko.
Udnævnelsen af Kyrylenko er derfor et signal om, at der
er svære og langstrakte forhandlinger i vente mellem den
sejrrige Julia Tymoshenko og Jusjtjenkos allierede.
På mødet besluttede den politiske ledelse i blokken
"Vores Ukraine - Folkets Selvforsvar" desuden at foreslå
Julia Tymoshenkos blok at afholde et fællesmøde for de to
partiers politiske ledelse, oplyser pressetjenesten.
Medlemmer af ledelsen gav udtryk for bekymring over
tilbageholdelsen af valgresultaterne i Ukraines sydlige og
østlige regioner, og netop i Donetsk, Luhansk, Odesa og Den
autonome republik Krim.
På mødet blev man også enige om at tage initiativ til at
nedsætte en fælles arbejdsgruppe med Julia Tymoshenkos Blok
omkring beskyttelsen af de ukrainske borgeres viljesytring
under det ekstraordinære parlamentsvalg den 30. september
Med 100% af stemmerne talt op ser det ukrainske
valgresultat omsat i mandatfordelingen i det nye parlament
Ukraine - Folkets Selvforsvar
blok - 3,96%
||202. 222 med Lytvyns blok
blok - 44,86%
Pengene har de senere år fået en stadig større
indflydelse i ukrainsk politik. I det forudgående parlament
nåede op til 30 parlamentsmedlemmer af skifte fraktion,
inden præsidenten opløste parlamentet. Det lykkedes aldrig
det afgående parlament at vedtage en lov om det bundne
mandat, som ville gøre det strafbart for et parlamentsmedlem
at skifte til et andet parti end det, han blev valgt for. På den baggrund synes
et flertal på 2 mandater at være alt for spinkelt til at
danne et stabilt flertal. I det afgående parlament var Julia Tymoshenkos fraktion den, som afgav flest overløbere til
Regionernes parti. Intet tyder på, at dette ikke også vil
ske i det nye parlament. Det, som kan sikre Tymoshenko og
Jusjtjenko et nogenlunde stabilt flertal, er hvis de
allierer sig med Volodymyr Lytvyns lille midterparti. Men
Lytvyns betingelse for en alliance vil være posten som
Repræsentanter for Regionernes parti, Lytvyns blok og
Kommunistpartiet er gået i gang med forhandlinger om et
parlamentsflertal, oplyser en kilde i Regionernes partis
pressetjeneste overfor hjemmesiden Liga. Ifølge kilden
deltager følgende personer i mødet: lederen af Lytvyns blok
Volodymyr Lytvyn, næstformand i kommunistpartiet Adam
Martynjuk, samt de to prominente medlemmer af Regionernes
parti Borys Kolesnykov. Desuden er socialisten Jaroslav
Mendus med i konsultationerne. Efter konsultationerne
forventes det, at mødedeltagerne vil møde pressen.
Den 3. oktober opfordrede præsident Jusjtjenko de
partier, som opnåede flertal i parlamentet, til at indlede
forhandlinger om dannelsen af et parlamentsflertal og en
regering. Kommunistlederen Petro Symonenko har udtalt, at et
flertal mellem hans parti, Regionernes parti og Lytvyns Blok
er muligt, forudsat nogle af medlemmerne af Julia
Tymoshenkos blok og Vores Ukraine skifter side, hvilket var
meget udbredt i det afgående parlament. UP.
Julia Tymoshenkos blok insisterer på at få fremskyndet
åbningen af det nyvalgte parlament og dannelsen af et
demokratisk flertal og regering, meddelte partiets
næstformand Oleksandr Turtjynov på et pressemøde onsdag.
Ifølge Turtjynov er hovedårsagen, at
Janukovytj-regeringens fortsatte embedsførelse er farlig for
Næstformanden mindede om, at de demokratiske kræfter er
parate til at offentliggøre dannelsen af et flertal efter
offentliggørelsen af det officielle valgresultat og mente,
at BjUTs og Vores Ukraines politiske modstandere "ikke har
noget belæg for at anfægte valgresultatet".
"Derfor er der efter den 15. al mulig grund til at
indkalde en arbejdsgruppe som skal forberede den første
arbejdsdag i den 6. Verkhovna Rada", sagde han.
Ifølge Turtjynov kan åbningen også finde sted inden den
30. oktober, eftersom "alle de spørgsmål, som arbejdsgruppen
har kompetence til at behandle, kan blive afklaret i løbet
af mindre end en uge".
Han gav også udtryk for et håb om, at de politiske
partnere støtter hans partis forslag. Samtidig oplyste
Turtjynov om, at de demokratiske kræfter ikke har fået noget
svar fra Volodymyr Lytvyns Blok vedrørende deres
forespørgsel om et samarbejde. Men han mindede om, at de
demokratiske kræfter har stemmer nok til at danne et flertal
også uden hjælp fra Lytvyns Blok.
"Vores ærede kollegaer har modtaget et forslag: og vi vil
ikke begynde at overbevise dem, hvis de ikke vil", påpegede
"Vi vil ikke iværksætte nogen auktioner (i forhold til
antallet af foreslåede poster), i den nærmeste fremtid vil
vi have et regeringsprogram, og hvis der er nogle som ønsker
at hjælpe os med at realisere det, så skal de være velkomne,
og vi vil tage godt imod dem", sagde han. Han tilføjede, at
regeringsprogrammets arbejdstitel vil være "Det ukrainske
gennembrud: ikke for politikere, men for mennesker".
Turtjynov tilføjer, at der ikke er nogen, som vil tale om
kvoter, indtil der foreligger en henvendelse fra Lytvyns
blok om, at de slutter sig til koalitionen. UP.
Julia Tymoshenkos Blok og Viktor Jusjtjenkos
støtteparti "Vores Ukraine - Folkets selvforsvar"
har officielt meddelt, at de har delt
ministerposterne imellem sig som led i en kommende
regeringskoalition. Nu mangler kun den afstemning i
det nyvalgte parlament, som skal gøre Julia
Tymoshenko til premierminister.
Nedenfor ses den fordeling af posterne, som Julia
Tymoshenko lederen af Vores Ukraine Vjatjeslav
Kyrylenko offentliggjorde i onsdags. Ifølge aftalen
får Julia Tymoshenkos blok regeringens økonomiske og
energipolitiske sektor, mens "Vores Ukraine -
Folkets selvforsvar" får ansvaret for den humanitære
sektor og de såkaldte magtministerier. UP
Julia Tymoshenkos blok
Vores Ukraine - Folkets selvforsvar
Ukraines 1. vice-premierminister
Ukraines vice-premierminister med
ansvar for humanitære anliggender
Minister for regional udvikling,
byggeri og arkitektur
- Statskomiteen for Ukraines statslige
pris indenfor arkitektur
Ukraines skov- og naturstyrelse
- Ukraines farvandsstyrelse
- Statskomiteen for Ukraines
- Ukraines statslige komite for etniske
mindretal og migration
- Ukraines statskomite for statens
- Ukraines statskomite for teknisk
regulering og forbrugerpolitik
- Ukraines statslige komite for erhvervs-
Ukraines brændstof- og
- Ukraines olie og naturgasselskab "Naftohaz
- Statskomiteen for kerneregulering
- Den statslige komite "Enerhoatom"
Ukraines kultur- og turismeminister
Ukraines minister for ekstraordinære
situationer og for beskyttelse af
befolkningen mod eftervirkningerne af
Ukraines arbejds-og socialminister
- Ukraines pensionsfond
- Ukraines nationale rumagentur
Ukraines videnskabs- og
- Ukraines komite for statslige
priser indenfor videnskab og teknik
Ukraines transport- og
- Ukraines vejdirektorat
- Ukraines statslige direktorat for
- Den statslige administration for Ukraines
- Ukraines kontrol- og revisionsstyrelse
- Ukraines rentekammer
- Ukraines toldvæsen
- Ukraines skattevæsen
- Ukraines finanstilsyn
Ukraines minister for familie-
ungdom og sport
- Ukraines statslige arkivkomite
- Ukraines domstolsstyrelse
- Ukraines kriminalforsorg
|Ukraines statslige ejendomsfond
|Statskomiteen for regulering af Ukraines
||Ukraines statslige Tv- og radiokomite
|Statskomiteen for værdipapirer og
||Ukraines slots- og ejendomsstyrelse
|Ukraines statistiske komite
||Statskomiteen for Ukraines eksportkontrol
|Den nationale komite for regulering af
||Den nationale komite med ansvar for
|"Ukraines sparekasse" A/S
Parlamentsmedlem for Regionernes parti Taras
Tjornovil vil ikke udelukke, at den nyvalgte 6.
Verkhovna Rada (Ukraines parlament) kan arbejde uden
en koalition. Dette synspunkt formulerede
politikeren på et seminar med titlen "Julia
Tymoshenkos tilbagevenden til regeringen: realiteter
og prognoser", oplyser internetavisen Obkom
medhenvisning til Ukrajinski Novyny.
Tjornovil påpegede, at forfatningen forbyder
præsidenten at opløse Verkhovna Rada i et helt år
efter et ekstraordinært parlamentsvalg.
"Derfor kan der opstå en situation, hvor
Verkhovna Rada vil arbejde et helt år uden en
koalition, selvom der er et flertal", sagde Tjornvil.
Ifølge Tjornovil vil regeringen med Viktor
Janukovytj i givet fald fortsætte sit arbejde, bare
Tjornovil mener, at en sådan situation ikke
ligefrem vil være til fordel for landet, når man
tænker på den manglende stabilitet.
Politikeren opfordrede Julia Tymoshenkos blok og
"Vores Ukraine - Folkets selvforsvar" til at prøve
at realisere deres koalition, og, såfremt det
mislykkes, gå i gang med at diskutere en stor
koalition med deltagelse af Regionernes parti.
Som tidligere oplyst har Tjornovil udtalt, at
hans politiske parti fra midten af november vil
indlede forhandlinger om en koalition mellem
Regionernes parti og "Vores Ukraine - Folkets
Den 15. oktober indgik Julia Tymoshenkos blok og
"Vores Ukraine - Folkets selvforsvar" en aftale om
at danne en koalition i det nye parlament. UP.
#33 (380), 8 October 2007
A publication of the International Centre for Policy
The Orange camp can now put
together a coalition
Based on the results at this time, BYT and
NU–NS can put together a coalition without
even including other partners. With only 228
seats in the Rada, however, ICPS analysts say
that this will not be enough to ensure that
the coalition can work steadily. Most likely
it will need to invite a third party to join,
which could be the Lytvyn bloc, with its 20
seats. In such a situation, the coalition will
have 248 votes.
Still, including the Lytvyn Bloc carries a
number of risks as well as benefits. For one
thing, the two main parties will have to
give up their previous agreement to split
Government and other posts right down the
middle, something that is actually written
into the latest agreement between BYT and
NU–NS. For another, there are doubts about
where the loyalties of the Lytvyn Bloc lie.
ICPS analysts still consider it unlikely that a
broad coalition will be established between
Nasha Ukraina–Narodna Samooborona and
the Party of the Regions immediately after
the election. NU–NS will not be a stable
coalition party for PR. Moreover, both part
of the NU–NS bloc itself, such as Ukrainiska
Pravnytsia, Narodna Samooborona and parts
of the Nasha Ukraina party have completely
distanced themselves from such an option.
It follows that, for the President himself,
such a coalition would have the effect of
undermining support in the Rada: he would
find himself opposed by both BYT and part
of his own faction. Moreover, a coalition
between NU–NS and PR would still not
guarantee the President support from PR for
his initiatives in the Rada.
The formation of a broad coalition will
also reduce support for the President among
Orange voters. The chances that Viktor
Yushchenko will make it into the presidential
run-off in 2009 will grow even worse.
And finally, a coalition with the Party of the
Regions is no guarantee that PR will not
nominate its own candidate in the 2009
This means that the most likely coalition
immediately after this election will be an
Orange one, with BYT and NU–NS, which
is what the pro-presidential electorate
expects. Some changes in this coalition
will be possible only in the medium term,
if a change in the political situation
provides the main players room for political
The possibility of another
political crisis remains
The formation of an Orange coalition
should, in the short term, ease some of
the antagonism in relations between
the President and Premier that was
characteristic under the recent Yanukovych
Government. Still, for an end to be made to
this crisis, the newly formed coalition will
have to engage first of all in entrenching
institutions that can guarantee that
politicians play by the rules from now
on. This firstly means reforming the
Constitutional Court and the judiciary.
Secondly, it means bringing the Law on
the Cabinet of Ministers in line with the
Constitution, adopting the Regulation
for the Cabinet of Ministers as a Bill of
Law, and amending the Budget Code. The
Cabinet also needs to return the President’s
Constitutional rights, which have been
taken from him in this Law. In addition, it’s
extremely important to regulate relations
within the Rada itself, as well as to give the
opposition proper powers by either passing
a separate law or adopting the Law on the
Verkhovna Rada Regulation.
These measures lay the foundation for the
Cabinet of Ministers and the President to act
on the basis of a similar interpretation of the
Constitution and for the legitimacy of any
decisions they make to be beyond question.
And this activity should become part of the
new coalition’s agenda. Otherwise, say ICPS
analysts, the impression that the crisis is
over will be short-lived. Without institutional
change, the crisis will not be healed.
The Orange forces don’t have a unified agenda
regarding state policy and are not united by
common political goals especially in terms
of the 2009 Presidential election. Views on
public administration, the goals of economic
policy, and, more important, on who leads,
differ in the Orange camp. Moreover, Viktor
Yushchenko and Yulia Tymoshenko make no
bones about their ambitions to run in the
next Presidential race.
Both international and Ukrainian observers agree
that the snap election
to the Verkhovna Rada took place fairly, openly and
Moreover, the election campaign itself took place in
of relative calm, the government organized the
electoral process in a
transparent manner and ensured that all participants
had an equal chance
to access the mass media, to campaign, and to
register their candidates.
But the formulation of unspoken rules, such as what
can or cannot be done
in putting together a coalition, underscored the
urgent need for an
independent judiciary, including the Constitutional
Court, without which
the regulation of any disputes over the Constitution
will remain impossible.
All of this is key to entrenching democracy in
Ukraine, say ICPS analysts
This means that, after the emotional
euphoria of the joint victory dissipates,
the fierce competition within the coalition
will continue—for the right to make
strategic decisions and for leadership.
The President will want the Government to
carry out his agenda, and NU–NS supports
him in this, while Yulia Tymoshenko will
insist on her own goals. If democratic
institutions are not strong enough, this
cohabitation could end in the break-up
of the coalition, and possibly even new
elections. In any case, without democratic
institutions, the weakness of the coalition
will equate the weakness of the state.
Reforms will have to wait
The current situation does not bode well
for reforms for a number of reasons. Firstly,
reforms cannot be undertaken because
they simply have not been planned. Other
than Constitutional reform and reform of
the judiciary, no other reforms were under
discussion during the election campaign.
For instance, despite all the promises to
increase pensions offered by all political
parties across the board, not one party
discussed the continuation of pension
reform. In addition, none of the reforms
of the branches of power can take place
without an effective civil service. Its
absence is the biggest problem of a
democratic society facing Ukraine today.
Yet every last party in Ukraine has kept
mum about reforming public
Secondly, the approach of a Presidential
election means there is a relatively small
window of opportunity for the Rada to
undertake effective work. The election
will take place in December 2009, but the
campaign will de facto begin a year earlier.
These are political realities that will remove
any desire on the part of politicians to
undertake reforms because the benefits are
likely to be long-term, while voters will feel
the impact of unpopular decisions almost
Thirdly, steady economic growth that looks
set to continue for the next several years
removes any economic incentive for a
Government to undertake reforms.
Foreign policy will not change
The results of this election are unlikely
to have much of an impact on Ukraine’s
foreign policy. The coming to office of the
Tymoshenko Government will not mean that
Ukraine turns its back on Russia or swiftly
becomes a member of NATO. Despite many
demands from her partners in the future
coalition, Ms. Tymoshenko did not ever
outline her position on NATO during the
campaign and is unlikely to make any radical
changes to foreign policy, especially if this
leads to serious confrontation in relations
with Russia and sudden changes in the price
In future, a change of Government will have
ever less impact on Ukraine’s foreign policy.
In the past, the fierce confrontation between
Russia and the West in political debate
in Ukraine were driven by the fact that
Ukraine was choosing not only its foreign
policy vector, but also its model for internal
development. With the democratization of
its political system, this conflict between
Russia and the West in Ukraine’s foreign
policy has been removed. Today, there is
consensus among all the country’s main
parties about the need for Ukraine to
integrate into the EU and to maintain good
relations with its northern neighbor. The
issue of NATO membership has become much
more controversial, but every Government
that makes this its goal has to deal with
By Pavel Korduban
Wednesday, October 24, 2007
President Viktor Yushchenko’s recent efforts
to commemorate World War II nationalist fighters
have provoked a wave of pro-Russian and leftist
extremism in Ukraine. Radical leftists disrupted
commemorations of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA)
across Ukraine on October 14, and the Russian
radical nationalist organization Eurasian Youth
Union (ESM) claimed responsibility for vandalizing
national symbols on Ukraine’s highest mountain.
On October 12 Yushchenko posthumously proclaimed
Roman Shukhevych, the UPA commander in the 1940s, a
Hero of Ukraine, and two days later he decreed that
the 65th anniversary of the UPA should be
commemorated. On October 14, a monument was unveiled
in the western town of Lviv to one of the main
ideologists of 20th century Ukrainian nationalism,
The leftist and pro-Russian forces have made it
clear that they will not put up with “the
president’s attempts to impose pro-fascist, neo-Nazi
policy on society,” as one of the leaders of the
Communist Party (CPU), Oleksandr Holub, put it. The
CPU issued a statement saying that Yushchenko had
“voiced support at the state level for an ideology
that was condemned internationally and by the
Nuremberg trial.” [Note information in the sidebar
about the UPA in the Nurnberg verdict.]
The UPA has always been respected in western
Ukraine, which the Soviet Union annexed from Poland
in 1939, as freedom fighters. Official
historiography maintains that the UPA fought both
the Nazis and the Red Army. Most right-of-center
parties, the far-right groups, and President
Yushchenko share this point of view. Pro-Russian
parties and leftists, most of whom are nostalgic for
the Soviet past, say that the UPA collaborated with
the Nazis, so it does not deserve commemoration.
This negative view of the UPA dominates in the
Russian-speaking regions, and it is apparently
shared by the majority of the Party of Regions of
Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych.
UPA veterans and several thousand supporters of
the far-right parties Freedom, the Congress of
Ukrainian Nationalists, and the Ukrainian National
Assembly organized a march in Kyiv on October 14 to
commemorate the UPA. They were confronted by
supporters of the CPU and the radical left
Progressive Socialist Party, who behaved
aggressively. Police prevented scuffles between
supporters of the rival camps, briefly detaining 24
of them. Similar events happened in several other
cities across Ukraine, including the second biggest
city, Kharkiv. In the Crimean capital of Simferopol,
where pro-Russian and leftist radicals by far
outnumber the nationalists, police had to work especially hard to prevent serious confrontations.
Yushchenko’s calls for UPA commemoration were
largely ignored by the local authorities beyond
western Ukraine. “Not everybody would understand
this. We have to first conduct serious explanatory
work,” said the governor of the central Ukrainian
Poltava Region, Valery Asadchev, who is a member of
Yushchenko’s team. The council of Ukraine’s
easternmost region, Luhansk, voted 73–2 to approve
an appeal for Yushchenko to revoke his decree on
proclaiming Shukhevych a hero. Luhansk voted
overwhelmingly in favor of the Party of Regions in
the September 30 parliamentary election.
On October 18, the ESM, a Russian radical youth
group, said that its activists had demolished
Ukrainian national symbols that had been erected on
Ukraine’s highest mountain, the Hoverla. The
mountain, located in western Ukraine, is a symbol by
itself. Yushchenko, when he was opposition leader,
would ascend it ceremoniously each year accompanied
by crowds of his political supporters. The Security
Service of Ukraine (SBU) confirmed that the ESM’s
activists had vandalized the symbols but said that
the ESM had exaggerated the damage. The SBU said
that this was committed by three young men, two of
whom had arrived from Russia for the purpose.
One of the leaders of the ESM, Pavel Zarifullin,
commenting on the SBU’s statement, said the three
young men in question reside in western Ukraine,
rather than Russia. Zarifullin mocked the SBU,
saying that it only pretended to have full
information on the ESM activists in question. The
Ukrainian version of the Russian daily Kommersant
quoted the ESM’s main ideologist, Aleksandr Dugin,
as saying that the “action on the Hoverla” had been
prompted by Yushchenko’s commemoration of Shukhevych.
Dugin and Zarifullin were declared personae non
gratae in Ukraine in 2006 for their participation in
anti-NATO and anti-U.S. protests in Crimea.
Ukraine’s main parties displayed very different
reactions to the incident on the Hoverla.
Yushchenko’s Our Ukraine–People’s Self-Defense
condemned it as “a criminal act committed by
anti-Ukrainian forces.” Yushchenko’s allies from the
Yulia Tymoshenko Bloc urged immediate reaction from
the Prosecutor-General’s Office. The Party of
Regions kept silent. The CPU’s Holub said that the
Hoverla incident was Ukrainian society’s “emotional”
reaction to Yushchenko’s “neo-Nazi policy.”
14; Korrespondent.net, October 14, 19, 20;
kpu.net.ua, October 19; UNIAN, October 19, 20;
Kommersant-Ukraine, October 22)