Monthly Archives: June 2007

AUR#853 Jun 20 Control Of Nuclear Energy Handed To Russia?; Ukraine Plans To Join Russian Uranium Enrichment Centre; Putin’s Dead Ukrainian Horse

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ACTION UKRAINE REPORT – AUR           
                 An International Newsletter, The Latest, Up-To-Date
                     In-Depth Ukrainian News, Analysis and Commentary

                      Ukrainian History, Culture, Arts, Business, Religion,
         Sports, Government, and Politics, in Ukraine and Around the World       

                        
ACTION UKRAINE REPORT – AUR – Number 853
Mr. E. Morgan Williams, Publisher and Editor, SigmaBleyzer
KYIV, UKRAINE, WEDNESDAY, JUNE 20, 2007 

               –——-  INDEX OF ARTICLES  ——–
            Clicking on the title of any article takes you directly to the article.               
   Return to the Index by clicking on Return to Index at the end of each article
1.     “KEEP THE CHANGE: ANDRIY DERKACH WILL HELP RUSSIA
  ACHIEVE ITS PLANS REGARDING UKRAINIAN NUCLEAR ENERGY”
                    Ukraine hands control of nuclear sector over to Russia
ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: By Dmytro Ryasnoy
Delovaya Stolitsa, Kiev, Ukraine, in Russian 11 Jun 07
BBC Monitoring Service, United Kingdom, Monday, June 11, 2007

2.      UKRAINE’S UKRATOMPROM & RUSSIA’S ROSATOM REACH
               AGREEMENT ON NUCLEAR INDUSTRY ENTERPRISES
Hanna Kukhta, Ukrainian News, Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, June 4, 2007

3.            RUSSIA READY TO INVEST INTO DEVELOPMENT OF
                      NOVOKOSTIANTYNIVKA URANIUM DEPOSIT 
Hanna Kukhta, Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, June 4, 2007

4YUSHCHENKO WANTS TO CHECK EXISTENCE OF PLAN TO CREATE

        UKRAINIAN-RUSSIAN JOINT VENTURE IN NUCLEAR INDUSTRY
Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Sunday, June 17, 2007

5.     UKRAINE TO INCREASE URANIUM PRODUCTION BY 212% TO
       2,500 TONS TO FULLY PROVIDE NPP’S WITH URANIUM BY 2013
Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Friday, June 15, 2007

6UKRAINE: URANIUM EXTRACTION AT NOVOKONSTIANTYNIVSKE
            DEPOSIT MAY START IN 2008, ENERGY MINISTRY SAYS
Interfax Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine, Friday, June 15, 2007

7.   UKRAINE MAY JOIN RUSSIAN URANIUM ENRICHMENT CENTRE
Reuters, Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, June 19, 2007

8UKRAINE PLANS TO JOIN INTERNATIONAL URANIUM ENRICHMENT
         PROJECT BEING ESTABLISHED BY RUSSIA AND KAZAKHSTAN
RIA Novosti, Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, June 19, 2007

9.           UKRAINE SEEKING TO PARTICIPATE IN CREATION OF
      INTERNATIONAL URANIUM ENRICHMENT CENTER IN RUSSIA 

Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, June 19, 2007
10.  SWISS 3D CAPITAL INVESTMENT AND CONSULTING COMPANY
        TO OPEN OFFICE IN KYIV, INTERESTED IN URANIUM SECTOR
                           Ukraine ninth in the world in uranium extraction
Interfax Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine, Sunday, June 17, 2007
 
By James Brooke, Bloomberg, Tbilisi, Georgia, Wed, June 20, 2007

12.              PUTIN CHECKMATES EUROPE’S ENERGY HOPES
COMMENTARY: By Keith C. Smith, Senior Associate
Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS)
Washington, D.C., June 2007

13FOUR EX-SOVIET STATES PLEDGE COOPERATION, WESTERN TIES
Agence France Presse (AFP), Baku, Azerbaijan, Tuesday, June 19, 2007

14.                          PUTIN’S DEAD UKRAINIAN HORSE
COMMENTARY: By John Marine,
Kyiv Post Senior Journalist, Kyiv, Ukraine,
EurasianHome.org, Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, June 13, 2007

15.                    UKRAINE HAS A CLAIM IN THE G8 TALKS
COMMENTARY: By Yulia Tymoshenko, Member of Parliament,

Leader of the Opposition, Former Prime Minister of Ukraine
Le Monde, Paris France, Thursday, June 7, 2007 (in French)
Action Ukraine Report (AUR) #853, Article 15, (in English)
Washington, D.C., Wednesday, June 20, 2007

16.                             THE LIAR’S LAST REUNION
      Bush and Putin have exemplified the arrogance of power run amuck
COMMENTARY: By Nina L. KHRUSHCHEVA
New York, New York, Tuesday, June 5, 2007

17.     U.S. AMB WILLIAM TAYLOR: “I HOPE MR. BUSH COMES TO
                  UKRAINE, BUT NOT BEFORE THE ELECTIONS”
INTERVIEW: With William Taylor, Ambassador of the USA to Ukraine
By Mykola Siruk, The Day Weekly Digest #17
Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, 12 June 2007

18.              U.S. PRESIDENT BUSH MAY VISIT UKRAINE IN 2008

Interfax Ukraine News, Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, June 18, 2007

19.          UKRAINE: THE ISSUE OF EURO-ATLANTIC STANDARDS
By James Sherr (presented in his behalf)
Session VIII:  Security Advantages of Euro-Atlantic Integration
Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic Future: International Forum I
Diplomatic Academy of Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine, 11-13 June 2007

Published by the Action Ukraine Report (AUR) #853, Article 19
Washington, D.C., Wednesday, June 20, 2007

20 UKRAINE: NATO READY TO BACK INTEGRATION WITH EUROPE
                             Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic Future Forum in Kyiv
New Europe, The European Weekly, Issue 734
Brussels, Belgium, Saturday, 16 June 2007

 
Financial Times, London, United Kingdom, Friday, June 15 2007
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1
   “KEEP THE CHANGE: ANDRIY DERKACH WILL HELP RUSSIA
 ACHIEVE ITS PLANS REGARDING UKRAINIAN NUCLEAR ENERGY”
                  Ukraine hands control of nuclear sector over to Russia

ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: By Dmytro Ryasnoy
Delovaya Stolitsa, Kiev, Ukraine, in Russian 11 Jun 07
BBC Monitoring Service, United Kingdom, Monday, June 11, 2007

A protocol on cooperation in the nuclear sector signed last week between
Ukraine and Russia shows Kiev has acknowledged it cannot develop its
nuclear sector on its own, a business weekly has reported.

The author said the document will give Russia the right to mine uranium in
Ukraine, build nuclear power stations and manage machine-building for the
energy sector, while Ukraine’s Ukratomprom will be marginalized.

He said subsequent initiatives by the Ukrainian government to corporatize
state enterprises in the sector will only make it easier for Moscow to
control Ukraine’s nuclear industry.

The following is the text of the article by Dmytro Ryasnoy, entitled “Keep
the change: Andriy Derkach will help Russia achieve its plans regarding
Ukrainian nuclear energy”, published in the Ukrainian newspaper Delovaya
Stolitsa on 11 June, subheadings appear as in the original:

The 16 years of inertia on the part of the Ukrainian energy sector has born
fruit.

In signing a protocol between Russian and Ukrainian nuclear energy
enterprises on intentions to cooperate (the document was signed by
Ukratomprom Director Andriy Derkach and Rosatom Director Sergey
Kiriyenko), Kiev admitted it is unable to develop its nuclear sector on
its own and agreed to help from Moscow.

Henceforth, Rosatom will extract uranium in our country, build nuclear
stations and supervise energy-sector machine tooling. Ukratomprom will be
left to satisfy itself with the name “nuclear outsider”.
                  THEY DETERMINED THEIR INTENTIONS
According to the document, the sides agreed to set up a number of joint
enterprises for extracting and enriching uranium as well as the production
of nuclear fuel at enterprises in Ukraine and Russia.

Besides this, they committed themselves to carry out joint work on extending
the service life of nuclear reactors and designing and building new ones.

The organization of the strategy of the sides’ mutual activities envisioned
in the protocol will be handled by a joint venture that is to be established
on an equal basis by the Kharkiv scientific-research institute Enerhoproyekt
(which is part of Ukratomprom) and the open joint-stock company Atomic

and Energy Machine-building (a sub-department of Rosatom).

The mere agreement by Kiev to divide control over the Kharkiv institute with
Moscow is astonishing. This institute is the only general contractor
available for work at the Zaporizhzhya and South Ukrainian nuclear power
stations.

And if one recalls that just a month ago, Kiev gave up control over the
capital’s Enerhoproyekt (the exclusive contractor at the Rivne and
Khmelnytskyy nuclear power stations) to Russian businessman Mikhail Abyzov,
one can say Ukraine already can no longer carry out construction in the
nuclear sector on its own.

“The memorandum does not leave any zone closed. We can cooperate in all
directions and are ready to move fully to an exchange of assets, acquiring
them in Ukraine.

“Besides scientific-research institutes, enterprises involved in making
nuclear fuel, enriching uranium and machine-tooling could be subject to such
exchanges. We are ready to present Ukratomprom with similar enterprises in
Russia,” Sergey Kiriyenko said, revealing Moscow’s true intentions.

Andriy Derkach said that at the first stage the foundation of the process of
mutual participation in assets will be agreements on joint activities on the
level of the main companies managed in the countries (Ukratomprom and the
to-be-established Atomenerhoprom), while exchanging enterprises would come
before they are independently valued.

“We will begin with agreements on joint activity as a stage in the process
linked to the real value of the assets and entering into these joint
ventures”, Derkach said.
                               ATOMIC MISALLIANCE
At first glance, such nuclear cooperation appears to be equal. But in fact,
Russia, which in contrast to Ukraine is fully independent in making nuclear
fuel and building nuclear reactors, will get the ability to turn our country
into its eternal consumer.

Ukraine has never had its own nuclear fuel systems and will now be deprived
of the possibility of building its own nuclear power stations.

For a greater show of illusion, Sergey Kiriyenko said Rosatom had reserved
for us the ability to obtain a stake in the Intergovernmental Uranium
Enriching Centre (IUEC, Angarsk, Russia). Participation in this project will
give Ukraine supplies of low-enriched uranium, but will fully cut it off
from enrichment technology.

The example of Kazakhstan, which floated a desire to participate in that
project a year ago and which has not made a single step forward since then,
shows Kiev’s participation in IUEC is not at present very interesting.

Nevertheless, the head of Rosatom said a Ukrainian Fuel and Energy Ministry
delegation will visit Angarsk at the end of June and in two months the sides
may reach a relevant intergovernmental agreement.

They already agreed to prepare and agree a list of specific cooperation
projects by 1 July (this rush is probably due to the looming election,
before which the current authorities want to resolve nuclear issues as they
see fit). The Russians have already shown which Ukrainian assets interest
them.

According to data from Rosatom, the Russian Federation is ready to begin in
the very near future to jointly develop the Novokostyantynov uranium deposit
(Kirovohrad region), finish building two reactors at the Khmelnytsk nuclear
power stations, and set up a joint venture based on the open joint-stock
company Turboatom in Kharkiv.

It is clear that by investing in Kirovohrad uranium (where reserves are
estimated to be 100,000 tonnes), Moscow will want guarantees on deliveries
of the raw material. And for joint work at Turboatom – to supply the
turbines for new reactors.

By the way, the unique electric machinery at the Kharkiv plant is perhaps
the only weak link in nuclear energy that our neighbour to the north has;
the Russians still have no modern production lines for slow turbines
stations for nuclear power plants.

In light of the fact that Rosatom plans to outfit seven nuclear reactors by
2015 and bring three or four reactors on line every year from 2015 to 2020,
this card in Ukraine’s hand is quite significant. It is another matter that
the government does not plan to make use of it and more likely to the
contrary will probably agree to a suspicious cooperation deal like joint
construction of new nuclear reactors.
                 SETTING COURSE FOR THE NORTH
[1] Above all, all of this excludes any hope of outfitting new Ukrainian
reactors with equipment from either BNFL/Westinghouse (UK-United

States) or Areva (France and Germany) in place of Russian equipment.

And despite the prospect of such diversification being written into our
country’s energy strategy, it appears the Viktor Yanukovych cabinet as
decided to reject it in a bow to Russian interests.

[2] Second, the Russians will probably want to compensate part of their
expenses in building new reactors with the exclusive right to supply their
own electric parts.

“We are ready to not only take part in construction, but also to invest in
building nuclear stations, including the possibility of exporting electric
energy to Europe. This is an understandable joint project which we hope to
become engaged in,” Mr Kiriyenko said not even trying to hide the real
intentions of his structure.

One must give the government its due in terms of a consistent nuclear
policy.

Literally a day after the joint protocol on cooperation between Ukraine and
Russia was signed, the cabinet of ministers asked parliament to approve the
corporatization of four state enterprises which are part of Ukratomprom –
the Skhidniy ore-enriching plant, the Ukrainian industrial technologies
scientific-research and development institute, the state enterprise Smoly
(all in Dnipropetrovsk region) as well as the management structure of an
enterprise being built on the base of the Novokostyantynov uranium deposits
(Kirovohrad region).

And the intent under which this is all being done are good – changing the
format of the enterprises makes it possible to attract credit, naturally
with assets as collateral.

In the context of these recent events, no-one doubts anymore that money will
come from Russia, which in return will get a share in the corporatized
structures of Ukratomprom.

With a portion of the shareholder capital, for example in the Skhidniy
ore-enriching plant and the Novokostyantynov uranium deposits, Rosatom will
take control of extracting Ukrainian uranium and making concentrate out of
it.

In principle, our country is already under the monopoly control of TVEL, to
which it supplies concentrate from Zhovtyy Vody and gets fuel rods in
return. But the agreement only lasts until 2010, something which apparently
causes Sergey Kiriyenko some discomfort.

Also, control over Smoly guarantees Rosatom control over the production of
raw material for refining uranium deposits. Perhaps only Andriy Derkach
knows who needs Russian money on these conditions.           -30-
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2.    UKRAINE’S UKRATOMPROM & RUSSIA’S ROSATOM REACH
             AGREEMENT ON NUCLEAR INDUSTRY ENTERPRISES

Hanna Kukhta, Ukrainian News, Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, June 4, 2007

KYIV – The state-owned Ukratomprom nuclear concern and Russia’s Federal
Nuclear Energy Agency (Rosatom) have signed a protocol on cooperation
between Ukrainian and Russian nuclear industry enterprises.

The protocol was signed by Ukratomprom’s Director-General and the

Enerhoatom national nuclear power generating company’s President Andrii
Derkach and Rosatom’s Chairman Sergei Kiriyenko.

Ukratomprom and Rosatom intend to develop cooperation in the area of
scientific technical support for the nuclear industry, improving safety
levels at nuclear power stations, extending the service lives of nuclear
reactors, design and construction of new nuclear power stations, development
of enterprises with fuel nuclear fuel cycles, and joint access to the
markets of third countries.

The plans of Ukratomprom and Rosatom for the near future include studying
the possibility of creating joint enterprises in the area of production and
enrichment of uranium and production of nuclear fuel at Ukrainian and
Russian enterprises.

Ukratomprom and Rosatom plan to compile and agree a list of cooperation
projects by July 1, 2007. Cooperation between Ukratomprom and Rosatom

is expected to be organized on the basis of a joint entity in which they will
own equal stakes.

The Kharkiv-based Enerhoproekt scientific research and design institute will
co-found the entity on behalf of Ukratomprom while Atomic and Energy
Machine-Building will co-found it on behalf of Rosatom.

As Ukrainian News earlier reported, the Ukrainian Cabinet of Ministers will
consider Russia’s proposal to participate in the work of an international
center on uranium enrichment in the town of Angarsk (Russia).  -30-
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3.     RUSSIA READY TO INVEST INTO DEVELOPMENT OF
               NOVOKOSTIANTYNIVKA URANIUM DEPOSIT 

Hanna Kukhta, Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, June 4, 2007

KYIV – Russia is ready to invest into development of the Novokostiantynivka
uranium ore deposit (Kirovohrad region). Chairman of the Federal Nuclear
Power Agency (Rosatom) Sergey Kirienko told this at a briefing.

“We agreed that our cooperation object will be the Novokostiantynivka
uranium deposit, in which we’re ready to invest and ensure development of
this biggest deposit of uranium in Europe,” Kirienko said.

According to him, Russia is ready to invest into development of the deposit
as much as necessary, proportionally to its share in the statutory fund of
the enterprise that will extract uranium at the deposit. Round 3-4 months
are needed for signing corresponding agreements and working through the
financing schemes.

As Ukrainian News earlier reported, Ukraine intends to invest about UAH 250
million in the uranium mining industry by 2008.

Capital investments in development of the uranium deposits of the state
enterprise called Skhidnyi Ore Mining and enrichment Plant (Zhovti Vody,
Dnipropetrovsk region) are planned at UAH 150 million while capital
investments in development of the Novokostiantynivka uranium ore deposit
(Kirovohrad region) are planned at UAH 100 million in 2007.

The Cabinet of Ministers approved the statutes of the Ukratomprom nuclear
concern at its meeting on March 1. The concern is being founded for the
purpose of creating a nuclear-fuel production cycle in Ukraine.

The program for creation of a nuclear-fuel cycle is financed only with
Enerhoatom’s money. At present, the Southern Ukrainian nuclear power station
is performing pilot operation of six Westinghouse-made experimental fuel
cassettes loaded into its third reactor.                       -30-
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4. YUSHCHENKO WANTS TO CHECK EXISTENCE OF PLAN TO CREATE
       UKRAINIAN-RUSSIAN JOINT VENTURE IN NUCLEAR INDUSTRY

Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Sunday, June 17, 2007

KYIV – President Viktor Yuschenko has directed the National Security and
Defense Council’s Secretary Ivan Pliusch and Prosecutor-General Oleksandr
Medvedko to check the information that preparation is underway for creation
of a Ukrainian-Russian joint venture in the area of nuclear energy. Pliusch
announced this at a press conference.

“Prosecutor-General Oleksandr Ivanovych Medvedko and Pliusch have been
directed to consider the agreements that were reported in the press – that
someone concluded intergovernmental agreements – and inform the President
together with proposals on their conformance to the active legislation,”
Pliusch said.

At the same time, he was unable to specify the agreements. “In this
paragraph, it is somehow inconvenient to take from the President the letter
he read.

They involve comments that a Ukrainian-Russian joint venture is being
created for processing nuclear fuel, that a sort of closed nuclear cycle is
being created here. There is something I cannot understand: who is creating
it with whom?” Pliusch said.

According to him, Yuschenko received a letter in Kirovohrad on June 14 and
read it at a meeting of the National Security and Defense Council on June
15. The letter expresses concern over creation of such a joint venture.

“It speaks about the concern of citizens that some sort of enterprise is
again being created in order not to diversify even fuel for nuclear reactors
and atomic stations,” Pliusch said.

As Ukrainian News earlier reported, Pliusch recently called on the Cabinet
of Ministers to stop signing documents that contravene Ukraine’s national
interests in the energy sector.

Ukraine’s state-owned Ukratomprom nuclear concern and Russia’s Federal
Nuclear Energy Agency (Rosatom) have signed a protocol on cooperation
between Ukrainian and Russian nuclear industry enterprises.

The Ukrainian Cabinet of Ministers will consider Russia’s proposal to
participate in the work of an international center on uranium enrichment in
the town of Angarsk (Russia).

Ukratomprom and Rosatom plan to compile and agree a list of cooperation
projects by July 1, 2007. Russia is interested in investing in construction
of nuclear power stations and production of energy equipment in Ukraine.
Russia is prepared to invest in development of the Novokostiantynivka
uranium ore deposit (Kirovohrad region).                  -30-
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5.    UKRAINE TO INCREASE URANIUM PRODUCTION BY 212% TO
      2,500 TONS TO FULLY PROVIDE NPP’S WITH URANIUM BY 2013

Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Friday, June 15, 2007

KYIV – Ukraine intends to increase uranium production by 212.5% or 1,700
tons to 2,500 tons per year to fully provide nuclear power plants with
uranium by 2013. The Fuel and Energy Ministry disclosed this in a statement
concerning results of National Security and Defense Council meeting on
energy security.

Besides, Ukraine intends to increase uranium production to 5,900 tons in
2014-2025 and to 6,400 tons in 2025-2030.

The indicators are foreseen by sectoral program entitled Uranium of Ukraine
and by Energy Strategy for the period until 2030.

As Ukrainian News earlier reported, Fuel and Energy Minister Yurii Boiko
considers that Ukraine may increase uranium production by 75% or 600 tons a
year to 1,400 tons by 2010.

The Fuel and Energy Ministry plans to launch uranium production at
Novokostiantynivka field (Kirovohrad region) extracting 100 tons of uranium
in 2008. Commissioning of start-up complex with the capacity of 500 tons of
uranium is planned to take place by 2010.

Currently, Ukraine produces about 800 tons of uranium and provides 30% of
needs of Ukrainian NPPs. The Fuel and Energy Ministry considers that
materials published before National Security and Defense Council meeting on
June 15 do not take in account positive changes in the fuel and energy
sector.                                                 -30-
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6. UKRAINE: URANIUM EXTRACTION AT NOVOKONSTIANTYNIVSKE
             DEPOSIT MAY START IN 2008, ENERGY MINISTRY SAYS

Interfax Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine, Friday, June 15, 2007

KYIV – Ukraine’s Fuel and Energy Ministry plans to extract the first 100
tonnes of uranium at the Novokonstiantynivske deposit in 2008, and the
complete complex with an annual production capacity of 500 tonnes will be
launched by the end of 2009.

This information is included in the ministry’s commentary on materials
published on Thursday for the next National Security and Defense Council
meeting.

Achieving the deposit’s projected top capacity of 1,500 tonnes is scheduled
for 2013. According to the ministry, uranium extraction in Ukraine in
2014-2025 should soar to 5,900 tonnes, in 2025, and by 2030 to 6,400 tonnes.

Currently Ukraine extracts 800 tonnes of uranium ore annually, which covers
30% of the demand from Ukraine’s nuclear power plants.            -30-
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7.  UKRAINE MAY JOIN RUSSIAN URANIUM ENRICHMENT CENTRE

Reuters, Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, June 19, 2007

MOSCOW – Ukraine is interested in joining an international uranium
enrichment project being set up by Russia to give developing nations the
chance to build nuclear power stations, Russia’s atomic energy agency said
today.

The centre was proposed by President Vladimir Putin last year as a way to
allow countries to develop civilian nuclear power without setting up their
own enrichment cycles.

Russia is basing the centre at a Soviet-built nuclear research plant in
Angarsk, more than 5,100 km from Moscow. A Ukrainian delegation visited

the plant today after a visit to Ukraine earlier this year by Russian nuclear
chief Sergei Kiriyenko.

”During the consultations with the Ukrainian side they confirmed their
interest in participating in the project to create an international uranium
enrichment centre,” Russia’s atomic energy agency (Rosatom) said in a
statement.

Ukraine joins Kazakhstan and Russia in the project and Rosatom is searching
for other partners. Armenia has held discussions with Russia about the
project.

Russia, which is reorganising its atomic sector, wants to take a larger part
of the booming world market for nuclear products. Nuclear power is again in

vogue because of high oil prices and concerns over carbon dioxide emissions.

World powers are trying to stop proliferation of nuclear technology to
states that could try to build nuclear weapons under the cover of a civilian
nuclear programme.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) visited the Angarsk Chemical
Electrolysis Plant, where the enrichment centre will be based, earlier this
year.                                               -30-
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8. UKRAINE PLANS TO JOIN INTERNATIONAL URANIUM ENRICHMENT
        PROJECT BEING ESTABLISHED BY RUSSIA AND KAZAKHSTAN

RIA Novosti, Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, June 19, 2007

MOSCOW – Ukraine intends to join an international uranium enrichment

center being established by Russia and Kazakhstan in the near future,
Ukraine’s Fuel and Energy Ministry said Tuesday.

“Ukraine intends to become a full-fledged participant in the international
uranium enrichment center in the next few months,” the ministry said in a
statement.

Russia and its ex-Soviet neighbor Kazakhstan, which holds 15% of the world’s
uranium reserves, signed documents last October to establish their first
joint venture to enrich uranium.

The center, part of Moscow’s non-proliferation initiative to create a
network of enrichment centers under the UN nuclear watchdog’s supervision,
will be based at a chemicals plant in Angarsk in East Siberia, and will also
be responsible for the disposal of nuclear waste.

Ukraine will be the second country after Kazakhstan to join Russia’s
initiative. The center will come on stream in 2013 and offer uranium
enrichment services to countries interested in developing nuclear energy for
civilian purposes.

Russian President Vladimir Putin first raised the idea of joint nuclear
enrichment centers early last year, in a bid to calm tensions over Iran’s
controversial nuclear program. The president said the centers would give
countries transparent access to civilian nuclear technology without
provoking international fears that enriched uranium could be used for covert
weapons programs.                                    -30-
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9.       UKRAINE SEEKING TO PARTICIPATE IN CREATION OF
   INTERNATIONAL URANIUM ENRICHMENT CENTER IN RUSSIA 
 
Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, June 19, 2007
 
KYIV – A delegation from the Fuel and Energy Ministry confirmed Ukraine’s
interest in participating in a project for creation of an international uranium
enrichment center during a visit to Angarsk (Russia).

The press service of Russia’s Federal Nuclear Energy Agency (Rosatom)
announced this in a statement, a text of which Ukrainian News obtained.

Ukrainian-Russian consultations on a wide range of issues connected with
creation of an international uranium enrichment center on the basis of the
Angarsk electrolytic chemical plant in accordance with the agreements that
were reached during a recent visit to Ukraine by Rosatom’s head Sergei
Kiriyenko.

The Russian side provided detailed information about the model for creation
of the center, including such information as cooperation with the
International Atomic Energy Agency as well as the rights and duties of the
shareholders of the center.

According to the press service, the two sides reached an understanding on
the need to resolve jointly with Kazakhstan in the next few months practical
issues on Ukraine’s involvement in the creation of the center as a fully
fledged member.

The Russian delegation was led by Rosatom’s deputy head Nikolai Spassky

and the Ukrainian delegation by Deputy Fuel and Energy Minister Yurii
Nedashkivskyi.
The Angarsk electrolytic chemical plant’s director-general Viktor Sholen
also participated in the consultations.

A tour of the production facilities of the Angarsk electrolytic chemical
plant was also organized for the Ukrainian delegation as part of its visit
to Angarsk.

As Ukrainian News earlier reported, Russia proposed in early 2007 that
Ukraine participate in the creation of an international uranium enrichment
center in Angarsk (Irkutsk region of Russia).

Ukraine’s state-owned Ukratomprom nuclear concern and Rosatom recently
signed a protocol on cooperation between Ukrainian and Russian nuclear
industry enterprises.

The Ukrainian Cabinet of Ministers intends to consider Russia’s proposal to
participate in the work of an international uranium enrichment center in
Angarsk. Ukratomprom and Rosatom plan to compile and agree a list of
cooperation projects by July 1, 2007.                           -30-
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10. SWISS 3D CAPITAL INVESTMENT AND CONSULTING COMPANY
        TO OPEN OFFICE IN KYIV, INTERESTED IN URANIUM SECTOR
                           Ukraine ninth in the world in uranium extraction

Interfax Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine, Sunday, June 17, 2007

KYIV – Zurich-based 3D Capital AG (Switzerland), which specialized in
organizing IPOs on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange (FSE) for companies

with small amounts of capital, is entering the Eastern European market and
opening an office in Kyiv.

“After the opening of the office in Frankfurt, 3D Capital indicates its
presence on the attractive Eastern European market by opening an office in
Kyiv,” reads the company’s press release issued on Monday.

3D Capital said that its arrival in Ukraine is linked with interest of
companies located in Switzerland in such sectors of the Ukrainian economy

as energy and mining.

In particular, in the third quarter 2007, an international company located
in Switzerland, which is engaged in investing in the energy and uranium
sectors, is to be quoted on the FSE, reads the release.

3D Capital said that since 1996, uranium extraction in Ukraine has doubled
and reached 800 tonnes per year, which puts the country ninth in the world
in uranium extraction, and the country plans to increase the extraction to
3,000 tonnes per year.

The company also said that one of the companies from its investment
portfolio is in talks on receiving a concession to mine gold in Ukraine.

In 2006, 3D Capital enlarged its portfolio of consulting mandates to receive
the status of public companies by nine, to 25, and plans to increase this
number to 31 this year, next year to 39, and in 2007 to help at least 10
companies gain listings on the exchange. The company is conducting the
diversification of its business to the mining business.

In December 2006, 3D Capital placed 24.2 million of its own stocks, worth
around EUR 2.5 each, on the FSE. This year, the company plans to open
offices in London and New York.                       -30-

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11.   GEORGIA BUILDS ENERGY CORRIDOR TO CUT TIES WITH
RUSSIAN MASTERS, THERE IS NO ALTERNATIVE SAYS PRESIDENT

By James Brooke, Bloomberg, Tbilisi, Georgia, Wed, June 20, 2007

TBILISI, Georgia – The white marble Stalin museum in Gori, Georgia, the
dictator’s hometown, will soon be overshadowed by a new attraction: a
military base built to train Georgian troops for NATO missions.

Gori’s transformation from Soviet pilgrimage site to an outpost of the
U.S.-led military alliance underscores Georgia’s drive to sever its ties to
Russia.

Georgia’s determination to assert its independence, and its location between
oil-rich central Asia and the Black Sea, has made it a conduit for energy
shipments to world markets.

International investors are pumping more than $3 billion into Georgia to
build pipelines, ports and refineries that will allow oil and gas from
Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan to bypass established trade routes through Russia.
That has angered the Kremlin, which last year imposed a trade embargo on
Georgia.

“There is no alternative” for the countries of central Asia, President
Mikheil Saakashvili said in the capital, Tbilisi. “Considering that Russia
is on one hand their partner but also their competitor, they have an obvious
interest in having an alternative — the Black Sea corridor.”

Georgia is the most dramatic example of the geopolitical shift taking place
in the former Soviet Union.

From Estonia in the north to Azerbaijan in the south, Russia increasingly is
confronted by former Soviet republics that are expanding links to the U.S.
and Europe.

That has sparked a backlash in Russia, with President Vladimir Putin
decrying the expansion of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and U.S.
plans to build a missile defense system in Eastern Europe.
                                      ‘REAL OUTLIERS’
“Georgia and the Baltic states are the real outliers, and the Russians have
gone out of their way to be really nasty with all of them,” said Andrew C.
Kuchins, director of the Russia and Eurasia program at the Center for
Strategic and International Studies in Washington. By punishing Georgia and
the Baltics, the Kremlin is trying to reverse the drift toward the U.S.
among other former Soviet republics, he said.

Georgia, a nation of 4.6 million people on the eastern shore of the Black
Sea, was ruled by Russia for most of the period from 1801 until it declared
independence in 1991.

The country cemented its turn to the west in 2004, when Saakashvili replaced
former Soviet boss Eduard Shevardnadze and pledged to steer the country
toward membership in NATO and the European Union.

Russia opposes Georgia’s bid for NATO membership. The Baltic states of
Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania have already joined the alliance, and
Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko wants his country to join.
                                     ‘NOT A FAN CLUB’
“NATO is not a fan club of democracies; NATO is a military bloc, a military
and political alliance,” said Andrei Denisov, Russia’s first deputy foreign
minister. “With all these hectic activities to engage Ukraine and Georgia
into NATO, to have these half-baked members in NATO, what should we feel?”

Yet Russia can’t afford to antagonize Georgia. Putin wants Russia to enter
the World Trade Organization before he leaves office next May. Admission
requires treaties with each member state, including Georgia. A first round
of talks broke up last month without agreement.

Saakashvili says he’s wants the Kremlin to let Georgia install customs
control points in Abkhazia and South Ossetia, two breakaway regions
controlled by Russia.

“I want to see what Georgia gets to sign off on WTO,” Clifford Isaak,
managing director for the Caucasus region at PricewaterhouseCoopers, said in
Tbilisi. “Unless Georgia gets something big it is not going to happen.”
                                      ECONOMY BOOMS
Divorce from Russia hasn’t condemned Georgia to economic collapse. The
country’s gross domestic product grew at an annual rate of 13 percent in the
first quarter, driven by international investment and trade with western
Europe.

The government is reducing taxes, cutting red tape and adopting pro-investor
policies, according to the American Chamber of Commerce in Tbilisi.

“The corruption has more or less disappeared from the traffic police, from
customs,” said Esben Emborg, president of the chamber and general manager
of Nestle SA’s local unit. “This is a much more level playing field than it
used to be. Anyone who runs a serious business will do well.”

Last summer, London-based BP Plc started pumping 800,000 barrels of oil a
day through a 1,116-mile pipeline that stretches from Azerbaijan through
Georgia to Ceyhan on Turkey’s Mediterranean coast.

Separately, BP and Norway’s Statoil ASA are shipping 1 million cubic meters
of gas a day from Azerbaijan to Georgia, replacing 20 percent of imports
from Russia. By December, the pipeline will be linked to Turkey and through
it to Europe.
                                      ENERGY CORRIDOR
“Georgia is in a critical position in the East-West energy corridor,” said
David Glendinning, a spokesman for the BP Plc venture that built and now
operates the pipeline. “The East-West energy corridor is a reality.”

Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan, just across the Caspian Sea, have more than 46
billion barrels of oil reserves, 59 percent of those in Russia, the world’s
largest energy exporter, according to BP.

On May 25, Georgia approved a $1 billion oil refinery that KazMunaiGaz, a
Kazakh state-owned oil and gas producer, plans to build at Batumi on the
Black Sea coast. The State Oil Company of the Azerbaijan Republic plans to
build a similar project.

“We would like to get gas and more supplies of oil from the Caspian Sea
region,” European Energy Commissioner Andris Piebalgs said April 30 at a
press conference in Brussels, where he spoke alongside Georgian Foreign
Minister Gela Bezhuashvili. Georgia is ready to provide the necessary supply
corridors toward the European Union.”
                                    HIGHWAYS, PORTS
Near Gori, where a medieval fortress overlooks the vineyards that produce
Georgia’s famous red wines, crews are paving the first stretch of a
600-mile, four-lane highway from Azerbaijan’s capital, Baku, to Batumi. Work
is also starting on a railroad linking Georgia and Turkey.

Outside the Black Sea town of Poti, Georgian officials plan to create a free
economic zone, reducing most taxes to zero to spur development. Earlier this
month, the investment authority of Ras Al Khaimah, one of the seven members
of the United Arab Emirates, agreed to develop the project.

The authority is preparing a master plan for what could be a multibillion
dollar port, industrial zone and power project, said General Manager Raman
Iyer.

“This is traffic basically across the Silk Road, traditionally the road from
Asia, toward the Middle East and Europe,” Saakashvili said.
                                 RUSSIAN EMBARGO
Georgia’s emergence as a competitor helped prompt Russia to crack down

on its former colony last year.

Russia cut all travel and import links, citing Georgia’s expulsion of
Russian soldiers accused of spying. It also deported about 4,000 of the
estimated 1 million Georgians working in Russia, mostly for alleged visa
violations.

OAO Gazprom, Russia’s state-controlled gas export monopoly, raised prices

to $235 per 1,000 cubic meters, four times 2005 levels, as part of a plan to
phase out Soviet-era “friendship pricing.”

The trade ban taught Georgians to look elsewhere. “We were concentrated too
much in Russia,” said Badri Japardize, whose Borjomi mineral water brand
lost $20 million in Russia last year. “We are reallocating our resources to
the Baltic states, U.K., Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan. Our U.S. sales have gone
from 20,000 bottles to 3 million.”

Looking south, Georgia dropped visa requirements for Turkish citizens last
year, and Turkish Airlines now treats Georgia’s new airport in Batumi as
part of its domestic network.

While the Russian flag is almost invisible in Tbilisi, the blue and gold
European Union flag is everywhere. “This is a way of preparing people to
think of themselves as Europeans,” Nestle’s Emborg said.
                            GEORGE BALANCHINE STREET
U.S. influence is on display at a new $62 million airport terminal in
Tbilisi, where the gates are emblazoned with the English words “Welcome to
Georgia.” Taxis traveling to the new Marriott Courtyard hotel head down
George W. Bush Street.

At the corner of George Balanchine and John Shalikashvili Streets, two
boulevards recently named for prominent Georgian- Americans, stands the new
U.S. embassy, a $56 million building where 480 people work.

On May 2, the U.S. Navy destroyer USS The Sullivans conducted exercises

with the Georgian Navy on the Black Sea, for 150 years a Russian lake. On the
same day, General David McKiernan, commander of the U.S. Army in Europe,
arrived in Georgia to watch U.S.-led military exercises.

Georgia’s success in distancing itself from Russia may teach the Kremlin to
moderate its stance toward the new nations on its fringe, said Thomas de
Waal, Caucasus editor of the London-based Institute for War and Peace
Reporting.
                              WANING RUSSIAN INFLUENCE
“Russia is rich, but it is losing its influence heavily in the South
Caucasus — it is relying disastrously on hard power,” he said by e-mail.

“The Russian blockade has pushed Georgia further into the American embrace,
and Russia is doing nothing to cultivate its major asset in the region, the
Russian language.”

Back in Gori, one mile from the museum marking Stalin’s birthplace, a
Turkish-Georgian company is building a military base that will comply with
NATO standards and house a brigade of Georgian troops. Nearby, a billboard
displays a photograph of Saakashvili and Bush shaking hands.      -30-
—————————————————————————————————-
To contact the reporter on this story: James Brooke in Tbilisi through
Moscow at jbrooke2@bloomberg.net
—————————————————————————————————-
http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601085&sid=aPAH1Ick09nM

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12.       PUTIN CHECKMATES EUROPE’S ENERGY HOPES

COMMENTARY: By Keith C. Smith, Senior Associate
Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS)
Washington, D.C., June 2007

        RUSSIAN SUSPICION CONFRONTS WESTERN FAITH
The European Commission and leading politicians in Europe seem able to
couner Russia’s willingness – and ability – to block the EU’s plans to
diversify the continent’s pipeline systems in order to diversify its sources
of oil and gas.

Some leaders even appear surprised that Russia is able to stop Central Asian
states of Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan from sending their growing
energy resources directly to Europe.

It is readily apparent that these countries could receive much greater
profit than they do via the present system in which Moscow acts as their
energy middleman.

More worrisome is that Europe is only slowly coming to grips with the
willingness of individual EU members, such as Hungary, Slovakia and Bulgaria
to reach separate deals with Russia that either thwart or seriously delay
official EU plans to diversify sources of energy imported into Europe.

What will it take for Europe to understand that they are competing with a
Russian leadership that does not believe in the win-win concept that drives
most economic leaders in Europe and America?

The KGB and GRU veterans who run the Kremlin and Russia’s energy companies
are fixated on national power and suspicious of any competitor’s motives.

The Putin Administration believes that the international respect that it so
desperately craves comes from wielding its energy resources, including the
use of energy blackmail and hidden financial arrangements with foreign
political groups.

The current Russian leadership also clings to the belief that profit made by
Western energy companies operating in Russia only comes at the expense of
the Russian people – or at least from the bank accounts of its new
political/business oligarchy.

Notwithstanding repeated disruptions since 1990 of energy supplies to the
West (one should include the Baltic States and Ukraine) Brussels, Berlin,
Paris and Rome still apparently cling to the belief that they are somehow
immune from Russian economic warfare.  The cyber war just unleashed by the
Kremlin on Estonia should be a wake up call.

But why hasn’t the West already reacted to the gas cut- offs to Ukraine and
Georgia in January 200(6), or to Lithuania, Belarus and Georgia also in
2006?
            SELF-DELUSION AND NON-TRANSPARENCY
In the past two years, President Putin has made 13 visits to the leaders of
Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.  Meanwhile, Manuel Barroso,
Chancellor Merkel, ex-President Chirac and President Bush have scarcely
glanced at the region.

It goes without saying that those diplomats from the EU and U.S. who have
visited Kazakhstan or Turkmenistan never had anywhere near the political
clout of President Putin when it came to wooing -or strong arming- Central
Asian leaders.

In any event, a Europe with no enforceable common energy policy should not
expect to compete effectively with a Russia that plays by a different rule
book – whether in Central Asia or in Central Europe.

While Russia emphasizes politics, including the non-transparent version,
well before economics in advancing its pipeline policies, European
democracies are unable and unwilling to match Russia’s efforts, even when
their energy security and national defense concerns are at stake.

Europe has sat on the sidelines while Russian state companies have taken
dominant stakes in the energy infrastructure of the three Baltic States,
Ukraine, Georgia, Bulgaria, Armenia, Moldova and Greece, and threaten to do
the same in Slovakia, the Czech Republic and Serbia.  Meanwhile, the Turks,
with their crucial supply routes, are now drawing closer to Moscow in their
energy policies.

Russia has recently concluded non-transparent energy deals with Hungary,
Slovakia and Bulgaria (and Ukraine, Moldova and Greece) that undercut EU
energy policy.

The EU Commission responds that it lacks the “competency” to demand that
these agreements be vetted by its Directorate General for Transportation and
Energy or by the Directorate General for Competition Policy.

The same “explanation” was offered when then-Chancellor Schroeder agreed to
a gas pipeline deal with President Putin, even though the agreement raised
serious security and environmental concerns for other EU states.

Should not the fact that this agreement was quietly negotiated by Mattias
Warnig, a former Stasi agent and Cold War colleague of President Putin have
provoked a greater degree of policy coordination and  insistence on
transparency from member states?.  It did not.

Can Europeans genuinely believe that these bilateral deals were reached by
means of open discussion by both sides on the business merits?  Did their
parliaments consider the national security implications of linking their
energy systems more closely with that of Russia?  Does the EU really believe
that the anti-corruption rules of the OECD or EU were scrupulously followed
in all cases?

Even a cursory look at how energy business is conducted inside of Russia
adequately reveals the fundamental nature of these deals in Europe’s own
backyard.

The takeover of Shell’s interests in the Sakhalin project by Gazprom was
tied to alleged environmental concerns; concerns that evaporated as soon as
the majority shares were transferred to friends of the Kremlin.

BP’s interests in Kovytka were threatened by the company’s alleged
non-development of that field; development that was and is prevented by
Russian interests who are now set to take control of this highly desired
energy source.

Meanwhile Russian companies are free to buy controlling shares in Western
companies.  The West plays on a playing field tilted in Russia’s favor.  But
still the game goes on.
                                        CHECKMATE
The Russians are world-class chess players, while their European and
American competitors play gentlemanly amateur croquet.

The Gazprom deal with Hungary is designed to strangle the economic argument
for the Nabucco pipeline that would bring Caspian natural gas to Europe via
Azerbaijan, Turkey and the Balkans.

The Hungarian Government of Prime Minister Gyucsany has come up with a

lame explanation for its action, but the deal was not reached openly, nor was it
debated extensively in Parliament before the Prime Minister flew off to
Moscow for a private chat with Putin.  And why, for that matter, was it
negotiated by Prime Minister Gyurcsany directly with President Putin?

Why, indeed, are all of Russia’s energy agreements negotiated directly with
President Putin?  What Western president or prime minister insists on
negotiating all of the country’s energy deals?  Does it take a rocket
scientist to understand why?

But the same lack of transparency marks Slovakia’s agreement to pass up its
option to buy Yukos’ 49% of Transpetrol, one of Europe’s most strategically
situated energy companies.

Caving in to Russian demands for ownership gives the Kremlin the ability to
block any future Odessa-Brody oil pipeline from the Caspian region, as well
as any gas pipelines that would run from Central Asia to southern Germany
via Slovakia.

Why did the Bulgarians and Greeks agree to give Russia a majority ownership
in the Burgos-Alexandropolous oil pipeline?  Again, a very opaque deal with
Russia completed at a high level and not vetted thoroughly by the EU
Commission.

Perhaps the EU should delegate management of Europe’s energy policy to the
UK’s MI 5 or MI.  At least that betters the odds of a more level playing
field when it comes to pipeline negotiations with Russia and attempts to
guarantee the West’s energy security.                  -30-
————————————————————————————————
NOTE: The Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) is a
private, tax-exempt institution focusing on international public policy
issues. Its research is nonpartisan and nonproprietary. CSIS does not take
specific policy positions; accordingly, all views, positions, and
conclusions expressed in these publications should be understood to be
solely those of the authors.

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13. FOUR EX-SOVIET STATES PLEDGE COOPERATION, WESTERN TIES

Agence France Presse (AFP), Baku, Azerbaijan, Tuesday, June 19, 2007

BAKU – Leaders of four ex-Soviet countries vowed Tuesday to boost
cooperation and seek closer ties with the West as they aim to shake off
Russian influence.

The presidents of Georgia and Ukraine, Mikheil Saakashvili and Viktor
Yushchenko, were in the Azerbaijani capital Baku for a summit with
Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and Moldovan Prime Minister Vasile
Tarlev.

Their four countries make up the GUAM (Georgia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan and
Moldova) group of former Soviet states, which is seen as a counterweight to
the Kremlin-led Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS).

Polish President Lech Kaczynski, who was also attending as an observer,
promised to support their efforts to limit what he called “energy blackmail”
by Moscow.

At their meeting the four GUAM states promised to pursue plans to ship

oil from Azerbaijan through Georgia and Ukraine to Europe.

Their efforts were heartily welcomed by Kaczynski, while the staunchly
pro-Western Saakashvili hailed the meeting as “ageopolitical revolution.”

In a clear reference to Russian control of European energy supplies,
Poland’s Kaczynski said that “under conditions of energy blackmail, energy
projects (with GUAM states) are of great interest.”

Azerbaijan is the start point of a strategic new oil pipeline to the West
that has been backed by Washington as a way of reducing Moscow’s grip on

oil supplies from the former Soviet Union, the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan (BTC)
pipeline.

Aliyev, whose country’s oil and gas reserves are keenly sought by fellow
members of GUAM and by the European Union, said the organisation was

gaining in international weight.

“GUAM, in a short time, has turned into a serious organisation. Its goals
are of interest to many countries,” Aliyev said.  By boosting transport and
energy links, GUAM members are “building a bridge between Europe and

Asia,” he said.

Saakashvili thanked Azerbaijan for increasing gas exports to his country
after a large price-hike by Moscow at the end of last year that some critics
saw as politically motivated.

“It was a heartfelt gesture and an important strategic decision,” he said,
adding that GUAM was surpassing the CIS as a basis for cooperation. “GUAM
seriously differs from the CIS, which has become only a club for meetings of
heads of state,” he said.

Kaczynski, Lithuanian President Valdas Adamkus and Romanian President

Traian Basescu attended the talks in a show of support for GUAM’s pro-
Western aspirations. Kaczynski said he would support the efforts of some
GUAM members to join the European Union and NATO.

Aliyev said the members would also present a united front in dealing with
separatist conflicts in their countries. Azerbaijan, Georgia and Moldova are
all dealing with breakaway regions.

But Russian newspapers on Tuesday detected cracks within the GUAM group.
While Georgia and Ukraine have primarily viewed GUAM as a pro-Western
regional bloc, Azerbaijan has been more cautious and Moldova’s position is
unclear.

The Russian newspapers said Moscow would take comfort from the absence on
Tuesday of Moldovan President Vladimir Voronin and the sending of his prime
minister instead.

Voronin is to meet Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow on Friday,
Kommersant newspaper reported. “Moscow managed to strike a pre-emptive

blow against its opponents,” the paper wrote. “Voronin has apparently decided
to stay away from the company of Russia’s enemies.               -30-
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14.          PUTIN’S DEAD UKRAINIAN HORSE

COMMENTARY: By John Marine,
Kyiv Post Senior Journalist, Kyiv, Ukraine,
EurasianHome.org, Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Russian President Vladimir Putin has once again accused Ukraine of
sponging Russian gas. So what else is new?

Nothing – the accusations refer to the past, but Putin’s reasons for
reviving them are in fact very forward looking if not misguided.

If you want to punish someone for doing something that isn’t considered
wrong by everyone else, it’s very convenient to come up with another
justification, even if you have to dig it up from the past.

Speaking in Moscow on the eve of the G-8 summit in Germany, Putin said that
Russia was through with subsidizing Ukraine and other post-Soviet states
with energy resources.

Moreover, he added, the price Ukraine pays for its gas imports would go up
by as much as 17 percent to compensate for past losses.

Ukraine and the rest of Europe have long gotten used to tough talk coming
out of the Kremlin, which has used its position as the continent’s biggest
energy supplier to demand the kind of respect it got during Soviet times.

And although it may be acting against its own best interests in the long
term, Moscow has not hesitated to follow up on its threats.

A year after Ukraine’s Orange Revolution, which set the country on a
distinctly westward course, Russian state gas monopoly Gazprom raised the
price Ukraine pays for its imported gas. It went from around $50.00 per
thousand cubic meters to $130 within the space of a year.

More importantly, the suddenness which with the first price hike was carried
out – during the Christmas holidays in subzero temperatures – led to
temporary shortages in Europe.

In response to international criticism that the Kremlin was trying to reel
in stroppy former satellites, Moscow blamed everything on Kyiv, repeating
earlier allegations that Ukrainians are inveterate gas thieves.

The Kremlin’s key message to Europe seemed to be that the newly independent
states which popped up after the breakup of the Soviet Union were unreliable
in matters of importance. And the delivery of clean burning gas to
environmentally conscious Europe is just such a matter.

Even Belarus, whose dictatorial President Aliaksandr Lukashenka has made the
country a pariah state in the eyes of the West, has had its energy bill
raised unilaterally by Moscow.

Of all former Soviet Republics, Belarus has clearly been the beneficiary of
dirt cheap Russian energy, allowing Lukashenka to pacify the country’s
population with high pensions and low consumer prices.

Ukraine, on the other hand, is a horse of a different color. Pro-Western
Ukrainian President Yushchenko’s team was quick to respond to Putin’s recent
threat.

Oleksandr Chaly, the deputy head of Yushchenko’s Secretariat, called the
Russian leader’s statements “absolutely baseless”.

However, if you throw enough mud at a wall, some of it’s going to stick.
Putin’s intended audience included not only Europe, which gets most of its
eastern gas via Ukraine, but Russians increasingly subject to arbitrary
government, and Ukrainians increasingly doubtful as to who is in charge of
their country.

While Putin has tightened his grip on his country since coming to power,
Yushchenko has lost most of his authority.

That’s why pressure from Moscow is particularly hard felt in Ukraine, which
has found itself wedged between an aloof EU and an indignant Russia.

Chaly tried to parry Putin’s verbal attack by arguing that the price Ukraine
paid for gas delivered from Russia between 1992 and 2000 was lower than the
average paid by Europe.

The fact is that during Soviet times, Russia subsidized Soviet Republics as
well as members of the Warsaw Pact, which have all, to one extent or
another, had their energy bills raised closer to the international market
price since the breakup of the Soviet Union.

Chaly also mentioned Russia’s reliance on the gas pipelines that run through
its former satellite states, noting that Ukraine charges transportation fees
below the international rate. Here, he hit the nail right on the head.

But this is no news to the Kremlin, which has attempted to make itself less
dependent by building pipelines around countries with Western-friendly
regimes such as Ukraine, Poland and the Baltics.

It won’t be easy to replace Ukraine’s transit pipeline, though, which is why
Moscow has continually proposed schemes to gain joint control over it.

Fearing that the country’s pro-Russian parliamentary majority might act
against the nation’s long-term interest, President Yushchenko signed a bill
put forward by the opposition that prohibits transfer of control over the
pipeline.

Unfortunately, what Chaly failed to mention in his arguments is that most if
not all of the gas that Ukraine gets from Russia originates in Central
Asia – about three fourths of Ukraine’s total consumption.

Russia merely transports the Central Asian gas along its pipelines, just as
Ukraine does for Russia.

Not only does this fact blow a hole in Putin’s moral argument that his
country’s generosity is being used, but it also reveals the weakness of
Russia’s position overall.

As Russia began to raise the price it charges for the gas it sells to
Ukraine, Central Asian states like Turkmenistan followed suit.
But for now, the Kremlin still holds a few trump cards, as Central Asia is
dependent on Russian pipelines to market its products.

That’s why Kazakhstan has been cool on US-brokered proposals to build an
oil pipeline around Russia. It would be too risky for the newly independent
state to upset the Region’s power broker.

But as the Chinese and Indian economies continue to heat up, demanding more
and more fuel to drive their expanding economies, Central Asia might
eventually consider other offers.

In the mean time, Ukraine has been courted by Western-based energy giants
offering to explore for newer, less accessible hydrocarbon deposits.

Shell Group obtained exploration license more than a year ago, while US
Marathon has just announced a joint agreement with Ukraine’s state oil and
gas company Naftogaz Ukrayiny.

Simultaneously, Ukraine’s gas-guzzling industry is investing in energy
saving technology.

So as Putin defines his country’s relations with Ukraine, he would be better
off looking to the future, when Russia’s energy monopoly may be a lot less
of a threat to its neighbors.

Accusing Ukraine of sponging or stealing Russian gas is like beating a dead
horse – a horse that doesn’t even belong to Russia.               -30-
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http://www.eurasianhome.org/xml/t/opinion.xml?lang=en&nic=opinion&pid=753
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15.              UKRAINE HAS A CLAIM IN THE G8 TALKS

COMMENTARY: By Yulia Tymoshenko, Member of Parliament,

Leader of the Opposition, Former Prime Minister of Ukraine
Le Monde, Paris France, Thursday, June 7, 2007 (in French)
Action Ukraine Report (AUR) #853, Article 15, (in English)
Washington, D.C., Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Over the course of the past two months, as Ukraine’s political crisis
deepened, I have heard the West repeatedly admonish Ukraine, saying:

“Once again, the young Ukrainian democracy is vacillating”.

The European Union has looked at Ukraine as if it was a difficult and
immature child. But Ukrainians showed the world that they could control
their destiny.

A political compromise was reached, setting the date for new parliamentary
elections on September 30th,, thus the political deadlock. This agreement
among competing parties is a victory of national interest over personal and
factional rivalries.

Since this event, a new and growing political crisis has co-opted the
attention of European countries: Russia has threatened to find new targets
in Europe if the United States moves forward with its intent to install a
missile defense system in Poland and the Czech Republic.

Western leaders have expressed grave concern at the nature of these threats,
and they are right to do so. Countless times I have attempted to call the
attention of European leaders to the potential dangers posed by a resurgent
and increasingly aggressive Russia.

I do not believe that a new Cold War, one that would divide Europe anew, is
imminent. Yet we must certainly consider Russia’s long diplomatic history,
traits that have certainly not changed substantially since the collapse of
the Soviet Union.  Russia continues to seek to influence and shape the
political landscape in its near abroad; this includes Ukraine.

The numerous challenges that exist within the geopolitical triangle that is
Russia-Ukraine-EU require a cooperative and trilateral approach. On the one
hand, there is the issue of collective security and the process of the
steady democratization of the post-Soviet space.

On the other is the issue of a common energy market. Yet the possibilities
for partnership are real and, as Russia’s immediate neighbor, Ukraine must
contribute to this debate in the G8 summit in Heiligendamm.  Resolution of
the ‘Russian question’ is vital.

It is time to make Russia understand that, in spite of its economic
leverage, articulated principally via the actions of Gazprom, European
dependence on Russian energy is really a co-dependence. Suppliers depend
just as much on consumers as consumers on suppliers. This is why we need a
genuine “energy alliance.”

Grandstanding must yield to moderation and a reassessment of Russian power,
which is altogether limited. It is our duty to reconsider our relation with
a Russia which, fortunately for all of us, recovered from the chaos of the
Yeltsin years.

It is time to formulate a new diplomacy that is no longer founded on
resentment and cynicism, and to adopt simultaneously realistic and
constructive steps towards progress on the critical issues in our common
interest.

In this international context, our elections next September could be a
turning point both for Ukrainian political life, as well as the future of
Russo-European relations, and thus world stability as a whole.

The successful democratization of Ukraine will deliver an important message
to Moscow – it must re-examine its regional and political ambitions. In the
Russian collective consciousness, Ukraine is Russia. Ukraine’s elections
could thus mark a decisive stage towards normalization.

This is why I supported whole-heartedly the new parliamentary elections,
because our constitutional system is currently deadlocked. Our
political-economic institutions are still weak and must be deeply reformed.
It is this issue of reform upon which I wish to commit myself to
participate.

Ukraine needs a new strategy of political, social and economic development.
It is a priority for all Ukrainians. Without a normal, and stable, political
system, we can make no further progress.

We must reform the institutions because only they can guarantee a proper
democratic process, political life, business community, and improve the
standard of living of Ukrainians.

To put an end to the political impotence; to gather all Ukrainians around a
genuine program for Ukraine, instead of dividing them – this is my party’s
goal.

By reaching for European standards of governance, with governing teams
invested in the public welfare rather than their personal enrichment,
Ukraine will be able to become a credible political actor on the European
continent.

Nicolas Sarkozy promised to have a frank dialogue with Vladimir Putin. This
frankness is very much needed for everybody – for Russia, France, Ukraine
and the European Union as a whole.                          -30-
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16.                 THE LIAR’S LAST REUNION
          Bush and Putin have exemplified the arrogance of power run amuck

COMMENTARY: By Nina L. KHRUSHCHEVA
New York, New York, Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Next week’s G-8 summit will probably be the last such meeting for Presidents
George W. Bush and Vladimir Putin. Seven years ago, at their first meeting
in Ljubljana, Slovenia, Bush looked into Putin’s eyes and somehow spotted
the soul of a Christian gentleman, not that of a secret policeman.

Next week, they shouldn’t be surprised if they see a mirror of each other,
because both men have exemplified the arrogance of power.

Bush and Putin both came to power in 2000, a year when their countries were
scrambling to regain international respect, Russia from the chaos of the
Yeltsin years and the US from the failed impeachment of President Clinton.
Each country thought it was getting an unthreatening mediocrity.

But both men, on finding themselves in positions of authority, ruled from
their default positions: Bush as an evangelical convinced that God was on
America’s side, and Putin as a KGB graduate convinced that all power comes
from intimidation and threats.

And what was the result? Convinced that he is right, and incurious to hear
contrary arguments, Bush felt free to undermine the rule of law in America
with warrantless domestic surveillance, erosion of due process, and defense
of torture, in addition to misleading the public and refusing to heed expert
advice or recognize facts on the ground.

From the tax cuts in 2001 to the war in Iraq, Bush’s self-righteous
certitude led him to believe that he could say and do anything to get his
way.

The damage Bush’s self-confidence and self-delusion has inflicted was
magnified by his gross overestimation of America’s power. Quite simply, he
thought that America could go it alone in pursuing his foreign policy
because no one could stop him.

While his father lined up world support, and troops from over a dozen
countries, for the first Gulf War, the son thought that allies were more
hindrance than help; except for Tony Blair, he did not care to have them.

Four years later, Bush’s arrogance and mendacity have been exposed for the
entire world, including the American public, to see.

Putin also succumbed to the same arrogance of power. Buoyed by high oil
prices, he now seeks to bestride the world as if the social calamities that
bedevil Russia – a collapsing population, a spiraling AIDS and tuberculosis
crisis, corruption mushrooming to levels unimagined by Yeltsin – do not
matter.

At a high-level security meeting in Munich this past February, Putin, who
usually draws on the secretive, manipulative, and confrontational Cold War
paradigm of what constitutes Russian diplomatic behavior, lashed out at the
United States with the sort of language unheard of since Khrushchev said “We
will bury you.” American actions were “unilateral,” “illegitimate,” and had
forged a “hotbed of further conflicts.”

Putin’s assessment of US unilateralism (if stripped of its overheated
rhetoric) may be correct; the trouble is that he lacks credibility to extol
moderation in foreign policy. High oil prices have helped him rebuild and
centralize the “strong state” that was his goal from the outset of his
presidency.

But his recent attempts to use Russia’s energy resources for political
coercion in Georgia, Ukraine, Belarus and elsewhere have exposed Russia as
an unreliable partner, unnerving even the Chinese, who do not wish to see a
reconstituted Russian empire on their border.

The Russian public, habituated to authoritarianism, wants Russia’s rulers to
be firm. Yet the true test of a ruler is not to pander to his people’s
expectations, but to peer into the future and match the country’s
aspirations with its needs and capacities.

In this, Putin’s arrogance is failing Russia miserably. His monomaniacal
drive to centralize power is driving out the very expertise that the country
needs to flourish.

Shell and BP are being expelled from the oil industry at the very moment
that Russian oil production is declining dramatically. His embittered
attempts to counter American power are equally short-sighted: helping Iran
develop its nuclear program and selling high-tech weapons to China are
hardly in Russia’s long-term strategic interest.

As usual, history is set on fast-forward in America. Everyone can now see
the gross and historic failures of the Bush presidency. Indeed, the American
people have preempted the historians, rebuking Bush by electing a Democratic
Congress in November 2006.

Meanwhile, Russia’s troubles remain hidden behind the strong arm tactics and
oil bloated coffers of Putin’s autocratic bureaucracy.

But the fact that Russia’s social and economic diseases are going
unaddressed has consigned the country to the long-term decline that his
presidency was supposed to reverse.

In the twentieth century, the Cold War parity between Russia and America was
apparent. For Russians, America was an evil empire, the world of capitalist
exploitation and a nuclear superpower, but also a cradle of economic
prosperity and individual freedom.

For America, Russia, too, was an evil empire, the world of communist
expansionism and a nuclear superpower, but also a cradle of science, spirit,
and soul.

A similar parity characterized the Bush-Putin era. Unlike America, however,
Russia’s people have not yet understood the price of arrogant power run
amuck. (www.project-syndicate.org)
————————————————————————————————
NOTE: Nina KHRUSHCHEVA teaches international affairs at The New

School in New York. Her book “Imagining Nabokov: Russia Between Art
and Politics” will be published this autumn.
———————————————————————————————–
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17.   U.S. AMB WILLIAM TAYLOR: “I HOPE MR. BUSH COMES TO
                  UKRAINE, BUT NOT BEFORE THE ELECTIONS”

INTERVIEW: With William Taylor, Ambassador of the USA to Ukraine
By Mykola Siruk, The Day Weekly Digest #17
Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, 12 June 2007

Does the US believe that Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada is legitimate and that the
political crisis has been resolved? Has the crisis affected relations
between Ukraine and the US in any way?

These and other questions are answered in the following interview with
William TAYLOR, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the
USA to Ukraine.
        “I DO NOT QUESTION THE PRESIDENT’S WORD”
[The Day] Mr. Ambassador, you must have received a note from President
Viktor Yushchenko on the illegitimacy of the Verkhovna Rada. Do you
consider the Ukrainian parliament legitimate?

[Ambassador Taylor] “What is obviously legitimate is the deal made by the
president, the prime minister, and the Verkhovna Rada speaker. We are all
very glad that the three leaders reached an agreement.

“Holding an election on Sept. 30 is, naturally, part of this deal. The three
leaders also agreed on how to hold these elections in a lawful,
constitutional, and peaceful way.

“In our view, this plan of action appears to be fully legitimate. As for the
details of how this agreement will be fulfilled, we understand that the ball
will start rolling when at least 151 Verkhovna Rada deputies resign their
seats.

“This raises the question of how this should be done. Who should announce
it, what is the role of the Verkhovna Rada speaker, and what is the role of
the Central Election Commission? And these kinds of detail should not be
commented on by outsiders.

“All we can say is that we are glad that an agreement has been reached on
how to legitimately head into the new elections. We can only encourage all
the sides to move in the projected direction.”

[The Day] Do you consider the note lawful?

[Ambassador Taylor] “Well, I do not question the president’s word. I
attended the president’s briefing last Wednesday. He explained his stand
with clear and carefully-worded phrases. The president said that the
deputies had completed their work, as far as their powers as members of the
Verkhovna Rada of this convocation are concerned.”
             “IT IS IMPORTANT THAT THE AGREEMENT

                                     BE IMPLEMENTED”
[The Day] Do you think the crisis in Ukraine has been resolved?

[Ambassador Taylor] “I think it has. The agreement that the president, the
prime minister and the speaker reached outlines a way that is peaceful,
democratic, and constitutional. Naturally, it is important that the
agreement be honored and implemented.”

[The Day] What would be a sign that the agreement is being honored? Would it
be holding the elections on Sept. 30 or maybe some other event that should
take place before this date?

[Ambassador Taylor] “Naturally, an important component of this deal is the
resignation of at least 151 deputies. This seems to be the case, although
reports are circulating that some parliamentarians have changed their minds
about this. One way or another, it will be important that at least 151 MPs,
or even more, do this.”

[The Day] The Ukrainian media reported that David Kramer, Deputy Assistant
Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs, and William Miller,
former US ambassador to Ukraine, visited Ukraine during the crisis. You also
had meetings with the representatives of all parties to the conflict. Did
the US play any role in reaching this agreement?

[Ambassador Taylor] “The US has been speaking with all sides in the
government and all the representatives of the opposition. Every time our
people from Washington visit us, they also meet high-ranking Ukrainian
officials.

“This happened when David Kramer came and this also happens in other

cases. In other words, we try to seize every opportunity for these kinds of
contacts.

“As for the US role in reaching this agreement, I agree here with the
president of Ukraine. The Ukrainians arrived at this agreement by
themselves.”
            “THERE WERE MOMENTS WHEN WE FELT

                                SERIOUS CONCERN”
[The Day] Has this crisis affected relations between Ukraine and the US in
any way?

[Ambassador Taylor] “The United States government in Washington, as well as
its representatives here, was closely watching the unfolding crisis. We said
repeatedly: we hope Ukraine comes out of this crisis as a more democratic,
more united, and more European country.

“There were moments when we were concerned that Ukraine might ride out this
crisis without gaining more democratic features. We were also worried that
potential clashes, in which interior ministry forces could take part, might
leave Ukraine less united.

“Since we are firm supporters of Ukraine’s movement towards Europe, we
feared that such dubious actions of the opposing sides in the heat of the
crisis might make Ukraine less attractive to Europe. In other words, there
were moments when we felt serious concern.

“This is why, as I said earlier, we are very glad that the three leaders
reached this agreement. If any lessons have been learned from this
situation, which will help Ukraine become more democratic and united and
come closer to Europe, all this was worth it.”
         “UKRAINE IS A DEMOCRACY THAT IS MOVING

                                    TOWARDS MATURITY”
[The Day] The US and the EU showed restraint vis-a-vis the situation in
Ukraine. But Russia’s leader said that Ukraine was heading toward “tyranny.”
Can this phrase be taken seriously?

[Ambassador Taylor] “I would not like to comment on Russian statements. I
heard Russia’s Ambassador Chernomyrdin saying that the statements of
Russia’s top leadership are no joke. Our view is that Ukraine is a democracy
that is moving towards maturity.

“The Ukrainian people are expecting and demanding from their government that
the country remain on this democratic path so that Russia as well as other
countries in this region can see how the democratic process should unfold.”

[The Day] “In a wide-ranging interview, Putin said recently that if some
countries meet democratic standards, this means they are serving somebody

else’s interests, mainly American.

[Ambassador Taylor] “I think it is in the interests of Russia, the US,
Europe and, of course, for Ukraine to remain on this democratic path.”

[The Day] Then why is the US planning to cut its aid to Ukraine? Does this
mean that democracy in Ukraine has strengthened to such a degree that it
doesn’t require as much aid from the US?

[Ambassador Taylor] “In a way, this truly is an indicator of the progress
that Ukraine has made in its democratic development. But perhaps even more
this reflects the position of Washington about concerted efforts to build
democracy in some other regions of the world.

“We would like new democracies that are struggling for survival in other
parts of world to achieve the same level of development as Ukraine. But we
will continue to support Ukrainian democracy.”
  “I ACCEPT THE IDEA THAT DEMOCRACY CANNOT BE
                               IMPOSED FROM OUTSIDE”
[The Day] Lately, many experts have been saying that democracy cannot be
introduced by force in other countries, and they cite the example of Iraq.
Do you think it is time to change the approaches to expanding or promoting
democracy in other countries, especially in the Muslim world?

[Ambassador Taylor] “I accept the idea that democracy cannot be imposed
from outside. What we are trying to do in Iraq is to let the Iraqis decide
by themselves. For them to be able to decide what form of government they
need, we must provide them with at least some measure of internal security.

“It would be best if the Iraqis themselves could ensure this security. We
and our coalition allies are working there to help achieve a kind of
security that will enable the Iraqi people to decide what form of government
they need.

“As you know, I worked in Baghdad for some time, and I can assure you that
the Iraqis have their own opinion of what kind of government and what form
of democracy they need.”

[The Day] What exactly?

[Ambassador Taylor] “They very much value the right to elect their leaders.
I was there during one of the first elections in Iraq. Nobody knew on that
morning if the Iraqis would be brave enough to go to the polls and vote.

“Everything began with one or two people at a time coming into the polling
station. Then five or six, and finally all the Iraqis headed out in droves
to the stations.

“There are a lot of challenges facing the Iraqis. But it is obvious that the
Iraqis – Shiites, Sunnis, and Kurds alike – want to freely elect their
leaders.”

[The Day] When do you think the Iraqis will have a level of democracy that
will allow them to govern their country without foreign assistance and to
ensure internal security?

[Ambassador Taylor] “I think they are capable of ruling themselves. What
they are still unable to do on their own is ensure an adequate level of
personal safety for Iraqi citizens.

“I think the international community, including the US, should help them for
some additional time, at least as long as they want to ask for this help.”
 THE POLITICAL WILL OF UKRAINE’S LEADERSHIP IS THE

 KEY TO THE SUCCESS OF ANTICORRUPTION PROGRAMS
[The Day] President Yushchenko recently urged the US and the EU to help
combat corruption. Have you given him an answer yet?

[Ambassador Taylor] “I made note of this request. I am pleased that the
president has again emphasized that he is aware of the negative impact that
corruption has on governmental structures and society as a whole.

“We are actually in the process of reacting to these queries: we are now
offering 45 million dollars’ worth of anti-corruption assistance to the
judiciary, education, and accountability of governmental bodies to the
public.”

[The Day] Does this mean providing additional funds apart from the
above-mentioned 45 million dollars?

[Ambassador Taylor] “Of course, we will want to see the way the programs
already in operation are being carried out. Then we will see if any
additional funds are needed. But in all probability, the political will of
Ukraine’s leadership is by far the most important component of the success
of anti-corruption programs.

“On our part, we can only issue calls for this. But this political will
should emanate from the very top, i.e., the state’s political leadership.”

[The Day] In other words, you see the will on Yushchenko’s part but not on
the other part of the governmental spectrum?

[Ambassador Taylor] “This should come from all the country’s leaders.”

[The Day] Last year plans were made for President Bush to visit Ukraine
and meet Yushchenko this year. Is Mr. Bush coming to Ukraine?

[Ambassador Taylor] “I hope so. I doubt this will happen before the
elections. President Bush usually visits countries after they have held a
democratic election and have a stable government that works and has a
program of action.

“I also think that President Bush would not like it to seem that the US
government is involved in the pre-election process and the election
campaign. It is a Ukrainian election, and Ukrainians themselves should be
making their choice.”                                  -30-
————————————————————————————————
LINK: http://www.day.kiev.ua/182793/
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18.   U.S. PRESIDENT BUSH MAY VISIT UKRAINE IN 2008

Interfax Ukraine News, Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, June 18, 2007

KYIV – U.S. President George W. Bush may visit Ukraine in 2008, deputy

head of the Ukrainian presidential secretariat Oleksandr Chaly has said.
“Under earlier understandings the visit of President George W. Bush is
slated for 2008,” he told the press in Kyiv on Saturday.
Chaly also said that Ukrainian President Viktor Yuschenko is planning to
visit the United States. “We are preparing a working visit of the president
to the United States,” he said.                      -30-
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19. UKRAINE: THE ISSUE OF EURO-ATLANTIC STANDARDS

By James Sherr (presented in his behalf)
Session VIII:  Security Advantages of Euro-Atlantic Integration
Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic Future: International Forum I
Diplomatic Academy of Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine, 11-13 June 2007

Published by the Action Ukraine Report (AUR) #853, Article 19
Washington, D.C., Wednesday, June 20, 2007

As ever, my views are my own, and they do not necessarily correspond to
those of the British government. (Mr. Sherr was not able to attend the Forum
so his remarks were presented on his behalf).

Let us put this question in context.

1. Until Ukraine makes substantial, sustainable progress in adopting
Euro-Atlantic standards, the advantages of integration will be outweighed by
its strains, traumas and risks.

2. The most fundamental of these standards is public trust in the integrity
of state institutions, beginning with the judiciary, but encompassing as a
sine qua non the National Security and Defence Council, the Ministry of
Defence and Armed Forces, the security and intelligence services and the
departments of law enforcement.

This explains why NATO and the EU have put such emphasis on helping

Ukraine develop its institutional capacity.

To mature democracies, the character of institutions matters more than the
character of politicians.  When politicians are stronger than institutions,
the country is hostage to their personal whims, ambitions and weaknesses.
Democracies cease to be effective, and political conflict threatens the
foundations of the state.

3. The issue of Euro-Atlantic standards-which is essentially apolitical-must
not be confused with the issue of membership in Euro-Atlantic institutions,
which is a matter of political choice. Sweden, Switzerland and Finland are
not members of NATO.

Yet their armed forces, security services and law enforcement structures
adhere to the same high standards of accountability, transparency, and civil
democratic control as in Britain, The Netherlands and Germany.

Why? Because these standards enhance security. They strengthen training
regimes, career development and competence; they  encourage honesty,
communication and the sharing of expertise; they provide value for money,
and they secure public support.

Debate about NATO membership in Ukraine will inevitably be political. But it
is time that the issue of Euro-Atlantic standards were removed from
political controversy.

If Ukraine were to join NATO, what would the advantages be?

1. From the moment that Ukraine joined NATO, it would never have to deal
with any serious security problem on its own.  It would be part of a
collective structure in which risks and burdens are shared.  Why should this
matter?

For good or ill, Ukraine is situated in an extremely important area of the
world, not only for Ukrainians, but for other states and also for powerful,
transnational criminal structures. President Kuchma once remarked that
Ukraine is not Switzerland.  Neither is it China.

It is neither safe enough nor powerful enough to master its own geopolitical
environment.  If it turns its back on Euro-Atlantic integration, it will be
obliged to defer to another neighbour who might not have Ukraine’s interests
at heart and whose commitment to its independence is questionable.

2. Ukraine would also be joining an organisation that shares costs and
provides disproportionate benefits to its less powerful members.  Even a
member as powerful as the United Kingdom spends only 2.2 per cent of its

GDP on defence, and most members spend less.

Even the UK cannot meet the full spectrum of its defence and security needs
with the money it spends.  But thanks to NATO, its integrated military
structures and its strategic assets, it can rely upon support from others
when its interests are threatened.

3. Does that mean that joining NATO will save money?  Not necessarily.
Meeting Euro-Atlantic standards costs money.

Decriminalising the state, modernising and reforming the police, security
and border services costs money.  But what are the costs of keeping things
as they are?  Security costs more money than insecurity.

Security inside NATO will cost more money than insecurity outside it.  These
choices need to be faced squarely and realistically.  And they need to be
made by Ukrainians.  It is not for NATO to make them.

4. Finally, Ukraine will be joining an organisation that makes decisions by
consensus.  And it will be joining an organisation based upon the
sovereignty of its members.  The Iraq conflict never became a NATO conflict
for the simple reason that several NATO members opposed it.

And whilst 26 members have agreed that NATO should conduct military
operations in Afghanistan, not all members contribute armed forces to that
operation, and some do so under restricted rules of engagement.  No one but
Ukrainians will have the authority to send Ukrainians into armed conflict.

Finally, what are the possible disadvantages of joining NATO?

There are many mythical disadvantages.  But in reality, there is only one.
It is obvious, and today it divides Ukraine: the risk, as continually
reiterated by Moscow, that joining NATO will have ‘grave consequences’ for
Ukraine’s relations with Russia.

A hasty, ill-prepared path to NATO membership would turn this risk into a
threat.  But the threat is only made real by the divisions and
vulnerabilities of Ukraine. The challenge is to overcome these
vulnerabilities and, by doing so, change the calculus of thinking in Russia.

That challenge dictates a more gradual, but also more determined course
towards integration: improving public understanding, diminishing regional
divisions and developing Ukraine’s capacity, cohesion and samostiynist’.

Russia cannot be expected to respect Ukraine’s choice until it is clear that
Ukraine has made one-and until Ukraine has the capacity to act on it.

NATO will continue to help Ukraine make choices and act upon them.  The
question today, as in the past, is whether Ukraine will help itself.   -30-
————————————————————————————————-
CONTACT: James Sherr, james.sherr@lincoln.oxford.ac.uk. Our thanks

to Walter Zaryckyj for providing the AUR with James Sherr’s remarks.
————————————————————————————————-
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20. UKRAINE: NATO READY TO BACK INTEGRATION WITH EUROPE
                           Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic Future Forum in Kyiv

New Europe, The European Weekly, Issue 734
Brussels, Belgium, Saturday, 16 June 2007

BRUSSELS – NATO member states are ready to support Ukraine’s aspiration

to integrate into European organisations, but it is up to the Ukrainian people
to take a final decision on the issue, Interfax quoted the alliance’s
Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer as saying in Brussels on June 14,
following a session of the Ukraine-NATO Commission.

The Ukrainian authorities’ task and responsibility is to persuade the
population that NATO primarily means democratic values, while NATO as

“a military machine is a secondary” function, Ukrainian Defence Minister
Anatoly Hrytsenko said.

The US will welcome Ukraine in NATO when the country wants to join and when
it is prepared for this, US Ambassador to Ukraine William Taylor said at an
international forum that discussed Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic future in Kiev on
June 13.

The door to NATO is open for Ukraine, but it is only Ukraine and its people
who can decide on joining the alliance, he said. Ukraine should initiate
comprehensive debate on joining NATO within the next several years, and the
people should receive all information about the organisation, he said.

Ukraine has made significant progress in its defence policy and in bringing
its armed forces closer to Euro-Atlantic standards in the past several
years, Taylor said. The country has also seen considerable economic growth,
he said.

At the same time, there are certain problems affecting security inside the
country, Taylor said. Other problems include confrontation between different
law enforcement and security agencies, the need to improve the investment
climate, and observance of the rule of law, he said.

Borys Tarasyuk, the leader of the Popular Rukh of Ukraine and former
Ukrainian foreign minister, has called on various political groups in the
country to refrain from gambling on Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic integration
during the election campaigns.

“NATO and Euro-Atlantic integration should not be a subject of election
manipulation and gambling,” Tarasyuk said at the forum in Kiev on June 13.

A decision on Ukraine’s NATO membership needs a consensus between political
elites inside the country, Tarasyuk said. “I urge those who voted completely
for Ukraine’s NATO membership at least to honour the laws they adopted
themselves,” he said.

Ukraine needs to adopt European and Euro-Atlantic standards in all political
and social areas, he said. Tarasyuk also called for avoiding populist
rhetoric in discussing Ukraine’s possible NATO membership and approaching
these issues pragmatically.

Joining NATO, Ukraine would defend itself from the “imperial ambitions of
certain states,” speed up political and economic reform, and turn into a
reliable energy supplier for Europe, Tarasyuk said. In addition, accession
to NATO would open a path to the European Union, he said.   -30-
————————————————————————————————-
LINK: http://www.neurope.eu/view_news.php?id=74997

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21.                                 THEIR UKRAINE

ANALYSIS: By Stefan Wagstyl and Roman Olearchyk,

Financial Times, London, United Kingdom, Friday, June 15 2007

Ukraine’s President Viktor Yushchenko seems to have recovered from the
lethargy that almost overwhelmed him after his triumph in the Orange
Revolution.

Perhaps the after-effects of his poisoning in 2004 are wearing off. Perhaps
he has summoned new reserves of energy. Perhaps he has been inspired by

the country’s turmoil.

Whatever the reason, Mr Yushchenko is back in action. The immediate result
has been a sharpening of his conflict with his Orange Revolution rival,
Viktor Yanukovich, the prime minister.

Last month, in Ukraine’s most serious political incident since the 2004
uprising, doors and windows were smashed when Mr Yanukovich’s

Both sides drew back from the brink and provisionally agreed to hold early
parliamentary elections in September, which the president hopes will clear
the air.

As he told the FT in a recent interview: “It’s very important to understand
that the political forces that then will come to the new parliament . . .
even if the [same parties] come back again . . . will be different. I think
they will attach more importance to political dialogue from now on.”

But there is considerable doubt in Kiev whether a reinvigorated president or
early elections can quickly resolve the country’s political problems, which
are rooted in Ukraine’s regional divides, its difficult post-communist
transformation and its proximity to its huge neighbour, the resurgent
Russia.

The current crisis dates back to 2005, when the pro-western Mr Yushchenko
failed to take full advantage of his Orange Revolution triumph or prevent
destructive rows between his supporters and those of his then ally, Yulia
Tymoshenko.

Under the compromise outcome to the Orange Revolution, the president was
obliged to transfer power to parliament in early 2006 and hold parliamentary
polls. To Mr Yushchenko’s shock, Mr Yanukovich bounced back to power

at the head of his Regions party and became prime minister.

Their co-habitation has been an unruly failure. At first, Mr Yushchenko gave
ground, hoping to secure an accommodation with Mr Yanukovich. But –
chargesMr Yushchenko – the Regions party concentrated on expanding its
parliamentary power principally by bribing other MPs to change sides.

In April, the president dissolved parliament and called early elections.
Accused of acting illegally, he has struggled to enforce his decision:
although Mr Yanukovich reluctantly agreed to the new elections, there is
resistance from his parliamentary allies and it is still not clear whether
the vote will take place, as planned, on September 30.

It is even less clear what will happen afterwards. Three big groupings will,
as now, dominate parliament – Mr Yushchenko’s Our Ukraine, Mr Yanukovich’s
Regions and Ms Tymoshenko’s bloc.

Mr Yushchenko and Mr Yanukovich broadly agree on business-oriented economic
policies, in contrast to Ms Tymoshenko, who has campaigned on a platform of
curbing oligarchs – despite questions about her own wealth.

On promoting democracy, Mr Yushchenko and Ms Tymoshenko stand much

closer. Mr Yanukovich, despite recent attempts at a makeover, still behaves like a
Soviet-era party boss.

Many analysts expect the post-election negotiations to last for weeks if not
months, raising questions about the government’s capacity to make decisions
over this time.

However, the risk of violence, which seemed a real possibility during the
events of last month, is now discounted, given the lack of public interest
in what is largely seen as a struggle within a faction-ridden political
elite.

The outcome of any coalition talks will depend as much on the distribution
of power and influence as on political principles.

Corruption will not go away. Business people favour a Yushchenko-Yanukovich
coalition or a Yushchenko-Yanukovich-Tymoshenko grand alliance. But whether
these rivals can co-operate more successfully than in the past is a moot
point. So is the question of how they will tackle Ukraine’s fundamental
political challenges.

The country is halfway along the road from Soviet totalitarianism to full
democracy. It remains divided between a pro-Yushchenko western region that
fears Russia and wants rapid integration with the European Union and Mr
Yanukovich’s base in the industrial east, which if not pro-Russian treats
the former imperial power with more deference.

Politics is dominated by business groups ready to bribe officials and
parliamentary deputies alike. Such groups are increasingly interested in the
access to global markets that comes through EU integration and support
recent moves to join the World Trade Organisation. But, for some Ukrainian
industrialists, Russia’s booming markets remain a priority.

The Orange Revolution supporters’ hopes that the events of 2004 would mark a
break with the past have been dashed. The public is thoroughly disenchanted
with politics. Fortunately, a strong economy is generating jobs and boosting
incomes, allowing Ukrainians to focus on economic rather than political
priorities.

Yet the gains of the Orange Revolution have not been lost. There is a free
press and there is real – if often corrupt and brutal – competition for
power. Unlike in Russia, where the Kremlin is tightening its authoritarian
controls, there is a democracy in the making in Ukraine. What it lacks are
democratic institutions, notably effective courts.

As Vadym Karasiov, a liberal political commentator, says: “Ukraine is going
in the right direction but taking the wrong steps. Russia is going in the
wrong direction but taking the right steps.”

Ukraine might go faster “in the right direction” if it were not for its
geopolitical position. Even in the 1990s, when Russia was weak, it was hard
for Kiev to break free of Moscow’s orbit. Today, with Russia increasingly
willing to reassert itself in the former Soviet Union, it remains difficult
despite most Ukrainians’ preference for joining the EU (even though that is
a remote possibility).

The Kremlin mishandled the 2004 presidential polls when it failed to secure
the election of Mr Yanukovich and block the rise of Mr Yushchenko.

But it continues to play politics, supporting pro-Russian parties and
non-government organisations, notably in Crimea, where ethnic Russians
predominate and where the Russian Black Sea fleet is based in the Ukrainian
port of Sevastopol.

Valentyn Nalyvaichenko, the acting head of Ukraine’s security services,
warns of the dangers of Russian interference, saying: “We are a young
country. For any country it is dangerous when domestic politics is being
interfered with by foreign sources.”

Russian President Vladimir Putin insists that he wants good relations with
Kiev but he rarely misses an opportunity to fire off an insult, recently
calling Ukraine “a tyranny”.

The Kremlin’s aim is to portray the Orange Revolution as a chaotic failure –
and reduce the appeal of western-style democracy in Russia and elsewhere in
the former Soviet Union.

For their part, Russian companies see investing in Ukraine as good
business – both in non-political sectors such as retail and in the intensely
politicised energy industry, where Russia’s dominance as a supplier can
generate political as well as commercial dividends.

The EU remains ambivalent about Ukraine. Poland and some east European
member states are pressing Brussels to engage more with Kiev and perhaps
offer eventual future membership. But so strong is enlargement fatigue in
the Union that this is off the agenda.

Mr Yushchenko, who hoped for more just after the Orange Revolution, now
accepts that the way forward is through developing economic links and
securing EU aid.

He knows the free trade agreement that Kiev can negotiate once WTO accession
is in place will drive Ukraine to implement about half the acquis – the EU’s
membership rules.

It was hard enough for Kiev to balance east and west when there was less
tension in relations between Russia and the US and EU.

Now, it is more difficult. As Oleh Rybachuk, Mr Yushchenko’s adviser, says:
“Unfortunately for Ukraine, every time there is a conflict between the west
and Russia we suffer.”                                  -30-

————————————————————————————————–
LINK: http://www.ft.com/cms/s/5530e68c-1adc-11dc-8bf0-000b5df10621.html
————————————————————————————————–
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AUR#853 Jun 20 Control Of Nuclear Energy Handed To Russia?; Ukraine Plans To Join Russian Uranium Enrichment Centre; Putin’s Dead Ukrainian Horse

=========================================================
ACTION UKRAINE REPORT – AUR           
                 An International Newsletter, The Latest, Up-To-Date
                     In-Depth Ukrainian News, Analysis and Commentary

                      Ukrainian History, Culture, Arts, Business, Religion,
         Sports, Government, and Politics, in Ukraine and Around the World       

                        
ACTION UKRAINE REPORT – AUR – Number 853
Mr. E. Morgan Williams, Publisher and Editor, SigmaBleyzer
KYIV, UKRAINE, WEDNESDAY, JUNE 20, 2007 

               –——-  INDEX OF ARTICLES  ——–
            Clicking on the title of any article takes you directly to the article.               
   Return to the Index by clicking on Return to Index at the end of each article
1.     “KEEP THE CHANGE: ANDRIY DERKACH WILL HELP RUSSIA
  ACHIEVE ITS PLANS REGARDING UKRAINIAN NUCLEAR ENERGY”
                    Ukraine hands control of nuclear sector over to Russia
ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: By Dmytro Ryasnoy
Delovaya Stolitsa, Kiev, Ukraine, in Russian 11 Jun 07
BBC Monitoring Service, United Kingdom, Monday, June 11, 2007

2.      UKRAINE’S UKRATOMPROM & RUSSIA’S ROSATOM REACH
               AGREEMENT ON NUCLEAR INDUSTRY ENTERPRISES
Hanna Kukhta, Ukrainian News, Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, June 4, 2007

3.            RUSSIA READY TO INVEST INTO DEVELOPMENT OF
                      NOVOKOSTIANTYNIVKA URANIUM DEPOSIT 
Hanna Kukhta, Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, June 4, 2007

4YUSHCHENKO WANTS TO CHECK EXISTENCE OF PLAN TO CREATE

        UKRAINIAN-RUSSIAN JOINT VENTURE IN NUCLEAR INDUSTRY
Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Sunday, June 17, 2007

5.     UKRAINE TO INCREASE URANIUM PRODUCTION BY 212% TO
       2,500 TONS TO FULLY PROVIDE NPP’S WITH URANIUM BY 2013
Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Friday, June 15, 2007

6UKRAINE: URANIUM EXTRACTION AT NOVOKONSTIANTYNIVSKE
            DEPOSIT MAY START IN 2008, ENERGY MINISTRY SAYS
Interfax Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine, Friday, June 15, 2007

7.   UKRAINE MAY JOIN RUSSIAN URANIUM ENRICHMENT CENTRE
Reuters, Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, June 19, 2007

8UKRAINE PLANS TO JOIN INTERNATIONAL URANIUM ENRICHMENT
         PROJECT BEING ESTABLISHED BY RUSSIA AND KAZAKHSTAN
RIA Novosti, Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, June 19, 2007

9.           UKRAINE SEEKING TO PARTICIPATE IN CREATION OF
      INTERNATIONAL URANIUM ENRICHMENT CENTER IN RUSSIA 

Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, June 19, 2007
10.  SWISS 3D CAPITAL INVESTMENT AND CONSULTING COMPANY
        TO OPEN OFFICE IN KYIV, INTERESTED IN URANIUM SECTOR
                           Ukraine ninth in the world in uranium extraction
Interfax Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine, Sunday, June 17, 2007
 
By James Brooke, Bloomberg, Tbilisi, Georgia, Wed, June 20, 2007

12.              PUTIN CHECKMATES EUROPE’S ENERGY HOPES
COMMENTARY: By Keith C. Smith, Senior Associate
Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS)
Washington, D.C., June 2007

13FOUR EX-SOVIET STATES PLEDGE COOPERATION, WESTERN TIES
Agence France Presse (AFP), Baku, Azerbaijan, Tuesday, June 19, 2007

14.                          PUTIN’S DEAD UKRAINIAN HORSE
COMMENTARY: By John Marine,
Kyiv Post Senior Journalist, Kyiv, Ukraine,
EurasianHome.org, Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, June 13, 2007

15.                    UKRAINE HAS A CLAIM IN THE G8 TALKS
COMMENTARY: By Yulia Tymoshenko, Member of Parliament,

Leader of the Opposition, Former Prime Minister of Ukraine
Le Monde, Paris France, Thursday, June 7, 2007 (in French)
Action Ukraine Report (AUR) #853, Article 15, (in English)
Washington, D.C., Wednesday, June 20, 2007

16.                             THE LIAR’S LAST REUNION
      Bush and Putin have exemplified the arrogance of power run amuck
COMMENTARY: By Nina L. KHRUSHCHEVA
New York, New York, Tuesday, June 5, 2007

17.     U.S. AMB WILLIAM TAYLOR: “I HOPE MR. BUSH COMES TO
                  UKRAINE, BUT NOT BEFORE THE ELECTIONS”
INTERVIEW: With William Taylor, Ambassador of the USA to Ukraine
By Mykola Siruk, The Day Weekly Digest #17
Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, 12 June 2007

18.              U.S. PRESIDENT BUSH MAY VISIT UKRAINE IN 2008

Interfax Ukraine News, Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, June 18, 2007

19.          UKRAINE: THE ISSUE OF EURO-ATLANTIC STANDARDS
By James Sherr (presented in his behalf)
Session VIII:  Security Advantages of Euro-Atlantic Integration
Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic Future: International Forum I
Diplomatic Academy of Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine, 11-13 June 2007

Published by the Action Ukraine Report (AUR) #853, Article 19
Washington, D.C., Wednesday, June 20, 2007

20 UKRAINE: NATO READY TO BACK INTEGRATION WITH EUROPE
                             Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic Future Forum in Kyiv
New Europe, The European Weekly, Issue 734
Brussels, Belgium, Saturday, 16 June 2007

 
Financial Times, London, United Kingdom, Friday, June 15 2007
=======================================================
1
   “KEEP THE CHANGE: ANDRIY DERKACH WILL HELP RUSSIA
 ACHIEVE ITS PLANS REGARDING UKRAINIAN NUCLEAR ENERGY”
                  Ukraine hands control of nuclear sector over to Russia

ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: By Dmytro Ryasnoy
Delovaya Stolitsa, Kiev, Ukraine, in Russian 11 Jun 07
BBC Monitoring Service, United Kingdom, Monday, June 11, 2007

A protocol on cooperation in the nuclear sector signed last week between
Ukraine and Russia shows Kiev has acknowledged it cannot develop its
nuclear sector on its own, a business weekly has reported.

The author said the document will give Russia the right to mine uranium in
Ukraine, build nuclear power stations and manage machine-building for the
energy sector, while Ukraine’s Ukratomprom will be marginalized.

He said subsequent initiatives by the Ukrainian government to corporatize
state enterprises in the sector will only make it easier for Moscow to
control Ukraine’s nuclear industry.

The following is the text of the article by Dmytro Ryasnoy, entitled “Keep
the change: Andriy Derkach will help Russia achieve its plans regarding
Ukrainian nuclear energy”, published in the Ukrainian newspaper Delovaya
Stolitsa on 11 June, subheadings appear as in the original:

The 16 years of inertia on the part of the Ukrainian energy sector has born
fruit.

In signing a protocol between Russian and Ukrainian nuclear energy
enterprises on intentions to cooperate (the document was signed by
Ukratomprom Director Andriy Derkach and Rosatom Director Sergey
Kiriyenko), Kiev admitted it is unable to develop its nuclear sector on
its own and agreed to help from Moscow.

Henceforth, Rosatom will extract uranium in our country, build nuclear
stations and supervise energy-sector machine tooling. Ukratomprom will be
left to satisfy itself with the name “nuclear outsider”.
                  THEY DETERMINED THEIR INTENTIONS
According to the document, the sides agreed to set up a number of joint
enterprises for extracting and enriching uranium as well as the production
of nuclear fuel at enterprises in Ukraine and Russia.

Besides this, they committed themselves to carry out joint work on extending
the service life of nuclear reactors and designing and building new ones.

The organization of the strategy of the sides’ mutual activities envisioned
in the protocol will be handled by a joint venture that is to be established
on an equal basis by the Kharkiv scientific-research institute Enerhoproyekt
(which is part of Ukratomprom) and the open joint-stock company Atomic

and Energy Machine-building (a sub-department of Rosatom).

The mere agreement by Kiev to divide control over the Kharkiv institute with
Moscow is astonishing. This institute is the only general contractor
available for work at the Zaporizhzhya and South Ukrainian nuclear power
stations.

And if one recalls that just a month ago, Kiev gave up control over the
capital’s Enerhoproyekt (the exclusive contractor at the Rivne and
Khmelnytskyy nuclear power stations) to Russian businessman Mikhail Abyzov,
one can say Ukraine already can no longer carry out construction in the
nuclear sector on its own.

“The memorandum does not leave any zone closed. We can cooperate in all
directions and are ready to move fully to an exchange of assets, acquiring
them in Ukraine.

“Besides scientific-research institutes, enterprises involved in making
nuclear fuel, enriching uranium and machine-tooling could be subject to such
exchanges. We are ready to present Ukratomprom with similar enterprises in
Russia,” Sergey Kiriyenko said, revealing Moscow’s true intentions.

Andriy Derkach said that at the first stage the foundation of the process of
mutual participation in assets will be agreements on joint activities on the
level of the main companies managed in the countries (Ukratomprom and the
to-be-established Atomenerhoprom), while exchanging enterprises would come
before they are independently valued.

“We will begin with agreements on joint activity as a stage in the process
linked to the real value of the assets and entering into these joint
ventures”, Derkach said.
                               ATOMIC MISALLIANCE
At first glance, such nuclear cooperation appears to be equal. But in fact,
Russia, which in contrast to Ukraine is fully independent in making nuclear
fuel and building nuclear reactors, will get the ability to turn our country
into its eternal consumer.

Ukraine has never had its own nuclear fuel systems and will now be deprived
of the possibility of building its own nuclear power stations.

For a greater show of illusion, Sergey Kiriyenko said Rosatom had reserved
for us the ability to obtain a stake in the Intergovernmental Uranium
Enriching Centre (IUEC, Angarsk, Russia). Participation in this project will
give Ukraine supplies of low-enriched uranium, but will fully cut it off
from enrichment technology.

The example of Kazakhstan, which floated a desire to participate in that
project a year ago and which has not made a single step forward since then,
shows Kiev’s participation in IUEC is not at present very interesting.

Nevertheless, the head of Rosatom said a Ukrainian Fuel and Energy Ministry
delegation will visit Angarsk at the end of June and in two months the sides
may reach a relevant intergovernmental agreement.

They already agreed to prepare and agree a list of specific cooperation
projects by 1 July (this rush is probably due to the looming election,
before which the current authorities want to resolve nuclear issues as they
see fit). The Russians have already shown which Ukrainian assets interest
them.

According to data from Rosatom, the Russian Federation is ready to begin in
the very near future to jointly develop the Novokostyantynov uranium deposit
(Kirovohrad region), finish building two reactors at the Khmelnytsk nuclear
power stations, and set up a joint venture based on the open joint-stock
company Turboatom in Kharkiv.

It is clear that by investing in Kirovohrad uranium (where reserves are
estimated to be 100,000 tonnes), Moscow will want guarantees on deliveries
of the raw material. And for joint work at Turboatom – to supply the
turbines for new reactors.

By the way, the unique electric machinery at the Kharkiv plant is perhaps
the only weak link in nuclear energy that our neighbour to the north has;
the Russians still have no modern production lines for slow turbines
stations for nuclear power plants.

In light of the fact that Rosatom plans to outfit seven nuclear reactors by
2015 and bring three or four reactors on line every year from 2015 to 2020,
this card in Ukraine’s hand is quite significant. It is another matter that
the government does not plan to make use of it and more likely to the
contrary will probably agree to a suspicious cooperation deal like joint
construction of new nuclear reactors.
                 SETTING COURSE FOR THE NORTH
[1] Above all, all of this excludes any hope of outfitting new Ukrainian
reactors with equipment from either BNFL/Westinghouse (UK-United

States) or Areva (France and Germany) in place of Russian equipment.

And despite the prospect of such diversification being written into our
country’s energy strategy, it appears the Viktor Yanukovych cabinet as
decided to reject it in a bow to Russian interests.

[2] Second, the Russians will probably want to compensate part of their
expenses in building new reactors with the exclusive right to supply their
own electric parts.

“We are ready to not only take part in construction, but also to invest in
building nuclear stations, including the possibility of exporting electric
energy to Europe. This is an understandable joint project which we hope to
become engaged in,” Mr Kiriyenko said not even trying to hide the real
intentions of his structure.

One must give the government its due in terms of a consistent nuclear
policy.

Literally a day after the joint protocol on cooperation between Ukraine and
Russia was signed, the cabinet of ministers asked parliament to approve the
corporatization of four state enterprises which are part of Ukratomprom –
the Skhidniy ore-enriching plant, the Ukrainian industrial technologies
scientific-research and development institute, the state enterprise Smoly
(all in Dnipropetrovsk region) as well as the management structure of an
enterprise being built on the base of the Novokostyantynov uranium deposits
(Kirovohrad region).

And the intent under which this is all being done are good – changing the
format of the enterprises makes it possible to attract credit, naturally
with assets as collateral.

In the context of these recent events, no-one doubts anymore that money will
come from Russia, which in return will get a share in the corporatized
structures of Ukratomprom.

With a portion of the shareholder capital, for example in the Skhidniy
ore-enriching plant and the Novokostyantynov uranium deposits, Rosatom will
take control of extracting Ukrainian uranium and making concentrate out of
it.

In principle, our country is already under the monopoly control of TVEL, to
which it supplies concentrate from Zhovtyy Vody and gets fuel rods in
return. But the agreement only lasts until 2010, something which apparently
causes Sergey Kiriyenko some discomfort.

Also, control over Smoly guarantees Rosatom control over the production of
raw material for refining uranium deposits. Perhaps only Andriy Derkach
knows who needs Russian money on these conditions.           -30-
————————————————————————————————-

[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
========================================================
2.    UKRAINE’S UKRATOMPROM & RUSSIA’S ROSATOM REACH
             AGREEMENT ON NUCLEAR INDUSTRY ENTERPRISES

Hanna Kukhta, Ukrainian News, Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, June 4, 2007

KYIV – The state-owned Ukratomprom nuclear concern and Russia’s Federal
Nuclear Energy Agency (Rosatom) have signed a protocol on cooperation
between Ukrainian and Russian nuclear industry enterprises.

The protocol was signed by Ukratomprom’s Director-General and the

Enerhoatom national nuclear power generating company’s President Andrii
Derkach and Rosatom’s Chairman Sergei Kiriyenko.

Ukratomprom and Rosatom intend to develop cooperation in the area of
scientific technical support for the nuclear industry, improving safety
levels at nuclear power stations, extending the service lives of nuclear
reactors, design and construction of new nuclear power stations, development
of enterprises with fuel nuclear fuel cycles, and joint access to the
markets of third countries.

The plans of Ukratomprom and Rosatom for the near future include studying
the possibility of creating joint enterprises in the area of production and
enrichment of uranium and production of nuclear fuel at Ukrainian and
Russian enterprises.

Ukratomprom and Rosatom plan to compile and agree a list of cooperation
projects by July 1, 2007. Cooperation between Ukratomprom and Rosatom

is expected to be organized on the basis of a joint entity in which they will
own equal stakes.

The Kharkiv-based Enerhoproekt scientific research and design institute will
co-found the entity on behalf of Ukratomprom while Atomic and Energy
Machine-Building will co-found it on behalf of Rosatom.

As Ukrainian News earlier reported, the Ukrainian Cabinet of Ministers will
consider Russia’s proposal to participate in the work of an international
center on uranium enrichment in the town of Angarsk (Russia).  -30-
————————————————————————————————

[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
========================================================
3.     RUSSIA READY TO INVEST INTO DEVELOPMENT OF
               NOVOKOSTIANTYNIVKA URANIUM DEPOSIT 

Hanna Kukhta, Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, June 4, 2007

KYIV – Russia is ready to invest into development of the Novokostiantynivka
uranium ore deposit (Kirovohrad region). Chairman of the Federal Nuclear
Power Agency (Rosatom) Sergey Kirienko told this at a briefing.

“We agreed that our cooperation object will be the Novokostiantynivka
uranium deposit, in which we’re ready to invest and ensure development of
this biggest deposit of uranium in Europe,” Kirienko said.

According to him, Russia is ready to invest into development of the deposit
as much as necessary, proportionally to its share in the statutory fund of
the enterprise that will extract uranium at the deposit. Round 3-4 months
are needed for signing corresponding agreements and working through the
financing schemes.

As Ukrainian News earlier reported, Ukraine intends to invest about UAH 250
million in the uranium mining industry by 2008.

Capital investments in development of the uranium deposits of the state
enterprise called Skhidnyi Ore Mining and enrichment Plant (Zhovti Vody,
Dnipropetrovsk region) are planned at UAH 150 million while capital
investments in development of the Novokostiantynivka uranium ore deposit
(Kirovohrad region) are planned at UAH 100 million in 2007.

The Cabinet of Ministers approved the statutes of the Ukratomprom nuclear
concern at its meeting on March 1. The concern is being founded for the
purpose of creating a nuclear-fuel production cycle in Ukraine.

The program for creation of a nuclear-fuel cycle is financed only with
Enerhoatom’s money. At present, the Southern Ukrainian nuclear power station
is performing pilot operation of six Westinghouse-made experimental fuel
cassettes loaded into its third reactor.                       -30-
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4. YUSHCHENKO WANTS TO CHECK EXISTENCE OF PLAN TO CREATE
       UKRAINIAN-RUSSIAN JOINT VENTURE IN NUCLEAR INDUSTRY

Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Sunday, June 17, 2007

KYIV – President Viktor Yuschenko has directed the National Security and
Defense Council’s Secretary Ivan Pliusch and Prosecutor-General Oleksandr
Medvedko to check the information that preparation is underway for creation
of a Ukrainian-Russian joint venture in the area of nuclear energy. Pliusch
announced this at a press conference.

“Prosecutor-General Oleksandr Ivanovych Medvedko and Pliusch have been
directed to consider the agreements that were reported in the press – that
someone concluded intergovernmental agreements – and inform the President
together with proposals on their conformance to the active legislation,”
Pliusch said.

At the same time, he was unable to specify the agreements. “In this
paragraph, it is somehow inconvenient to take from the President the letter
he read.

They involve comments that a Ukrainian-Russian joint venture is being
created for processing nuclear fuel, that a sort of closed nuclear cycle is
being created here. There is something I cannot understand: who is creating
it with whom?” Pliusch said.

According to him, Yuschenko received a letter in Kirovohrad on June 14 and
read it at a meeting of the National Security and Defense Council on June
15. The letter expresses concern over creation of such a joint venture.

“It speaks about the concern of citizens that some sort of enterprise is
again being created in order not to diversify even fuel for nuclear reactors
and atomic stations,” Pliusch said.

As Ukrainian News earlier reported, Pliusch recently called on the Cabinet
of Ministers to stop signing documents that contravene Ukraine’s national
interests in the energy sector.

Ukraine’s state-owned Ukratomprom nuclear concern and Russia’s Federal
Nuclear Energy Agency (Rosatom) have signed a protocol on cooperation
between Ukrainian and Russian nuclear industry enterprises.

The Ukrainian Cabinet of Ministers will consider Russia’s proposal to
participate in the work of an international center on uranium enrichment in
the town of Angarsk (Russia).

Ukratomprom and Rosatom plan to compile and agree a list of cooperation
projects by July 1, 2007. Russia is interested in investing in construction
of nuclear power stations and production of energy equipment in Ukraine.
Russia is prepared to invest in development of the Novokostiantynivka
uranium ore deposit (Kirovohrad region).                  -30-
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5.    UKRAINE TO INCREASE URANIUM PRODUCTION BY 212% TO
      2,500 TONS TO FULLY PROVIDE NPP’S WITH URANIUM BY 2013

Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Friday, June 15, 2007

KYIV – Ukraine intends to increase uranium production by 212.5% or 1,700
tons to 2,500 tons per year to fully provide nuclear power plants with
uranium by 2013. The Fuel and Energy Ministry disclosed this in a statement
concerning results of National Security and Defense Council meeting on
energy security.

Besides, Ukraine intends to increase uranium production to 5,900 tons in
2014-2025 and to 6,400 tons in 2025-2030.

The indicators are foreseen by sectoral program entitled Uranium of Ukraine
and by Energy Strategy for the period until 2030.

As Ukrainian News earlier reported, Fuel and Energy Minister Yurii Boiko
considers that Ukraine may increase uranium production by 75% or 600 tons a
year to 1,400 tons by 2010.

The Fuel and Energy Ministry plans to launch uranium production at
Novokostiantynivka field (Kirovohrad region) extracting 100 tons of uranium
in 2008. Commissioning of start-up complex with the capacity of 500 tons of
uranium is planned to take place by 2010.

Currently, Ukraine produces about 800 tons of uranium and provides 30% of
needs of Ukrainian NPPs. The Fuel and Energy Ministry considers that
materials published before National Security and Defense Council meeting on
June 15 do not take in account positive changes in the fuel and energy
sector.                                                 -30-
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6. UKRAINE: URANIUM EXTRACTION AT NOVOKONSTIANTYNIVSKE
             DEPOSIT MAY START IN 2008, ENERGY MINISTRY SAYS

Interfax Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine, Friday, June 15, 2007

KYIV – Ukraine’s Fuel and Energy Ministry plans to extract the first 100
tonnes of uranium at the Novokonstiantynivske deposit in 2008, and the
complete complex with an annual production capacity of 500 tonnes will be
launched by the end of 2009.

This information is included in the ministry’s commentary on materials
published on Thursday for the next National Security and Defense Council
meeting.

Achieving the deposit’s projected top capacity of 1,500 tonnes is scheduled
for 2013. According to the ministry, uranium extraction in Ukraine in
2014-2025 should soar to 5,900 tonnes, in 2025, and by 2030 to 6,400 tonnes.

Currently Ukraine extracts 800 tonnes of uranium ore annually, which covers
30% of the demand from Ukraine’s nuclear power plants.            -30-
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7.  UKRAINE MAY JOIN RUSSIAN URANIUM ENRICHMENT CENTRE

Reuters, Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, June 19, 2007

MOSCOW – Ukraine is interested in joining an international uranium
enrichment project being set up by Russia to give developing nations the
chance to build nuclear power stations, Russia’s atomic energy agency said
today.

The centre was proposed by President Vladimir Putin last year as a way to
allow countries to develop civilian nuclear power without setting up their
own enrichment cycles.

Russia is basing the centre at a Soviet-built nuclear research plant in
Angarsk, more than 5,100 km from Moscow. A Ukrainian delegation visited

the plant today after a visit to Ukraine earlier this year by Russian nuclear
chief Sergei Kiriyenko.

”During the consultations with the Ukrainian side they confirmed their
interest in participating in the project to create an international uranium
enrichment centre,” Russia’s atomic energy agency (Rosatom) said in a
statement.

Ukraine joins Kazakhstan and Russia in the project and Rosatom is searching
for other partners. Armenia has held discussions with Russia about the
project.

Russia, which is reorganising its atomic sector, wants to take a larger part
of the booming world market for nuclear products. Nuclear power is again in

vogue because of high oil prices and concerns over carbon dioxide emissions.

World powers are trying to stop proliferation of nuclear technology to
states that could try to build nuclear weapons under the cover of a civilian
nuclear programme.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) visited the Angarsk Chemical
Electrolysis Plant, where the enrichment centre will be based, earlier this
year.                                               -30-
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8. UKRAINE PLANS TO JOIN INTERNATIONAL URANIUM ENRICHMENT
        PROJECT BEING ESTABLISHED BY RUSSIA AND KAZAKHSTAN

RIA Novosti, Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, June 19, 2007

MOSCOW – Ukraine intends to join an international uranium enrichment

center being established by Russia and Kazakhstan in the near future,
Ukraine’s Fuel and Energy Ministry said Tuesday.

“Ukraine intends to become a full-fledged participant in the international
uranium enrichment center in the next few months,” the ministry said in a
statement.

Russia and its ex-Soviet neighbor Kazakhstan, which holds 15% of the world’s
uranium reserves, signed documents last October to establish their first
joint venture to enrich uranium.

The center, part of Moscow’s non-proliferation initiative to create a
network of enrichment centers under the UN nuclear watchdog’s supervision,
will be based at a chemicals plant in Angarsk in East Siberia, and will also
be responsible for the disposal of nuclear waste.

Ukraine will be the second country after Kazakhstan to join Russia’s
initiative. The center will come on stream in 2013 and offer uranium
enrichment services to countries interested in developing nuclear energy for
civilian purposes.

Russian President Vladimir Putin first raised the idea of joint nuclear
enrichment centers early last year, in a bid to calm tensions over Iran’s
controversial nuclear program. The president said the centers would give
countries transparent access to civilian nuclear technology without
provoking international fears that enriched uranium could be used for covert
weapons programs.                                    -30-
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9.       UKRAINE SEEKING TO PARTICIPATE IN CREATION OF
   INTERNATIONAL URANIUM ENRICHMENT CENTER IN RUSSIA 
 
Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, June 19, 2007
 
KYIV – A delegation from the Fuel and Energy Ministry confirmed Ukraine’s
interest in participating in a project for creation of an international uranium
enrichment center during a visit to Angarsk (Russia).

The press service of Russia’s Federal Nuclear Energy Agency (Rosatom)
announced this in a statement, a text of which Ukrainian News obtained.

Ukrainian-Russian consultations on a wide range of issues connected with
creation of an international uranium enrichment center on the basis of the
Angarsk electrolytic chemical plant in accordance with the agreements that
were reached during a recent visit to Ukraine by Rosatom’s head Sergei
Kiriyenko.

The Russian side provided detailed information about the model for creation
of the center, including such information as cooperation with the
International Atomic Energy Agency as well as the rights and duties of the
shareholders of the center.

According to the press service, the two sides reached an understanding on
the need to resolve jointly with Kazakhstan in the next few months practical
issues on Ukraine’s involvement in the creation of the center as a fully
fledged member.

The Russian delegation was led by Rosatom’s deputy head Nikolai Spassky

and the Ukrainian delegation by Deputy Fuel and Energy Minister Yurii
Nedashkivskyi.
The Angarsk electrolytic chemical plant’s director-general Viktor Sholen
also participated in the consultations.

A tour of the production facilities of the Angarsk electrolytic chemical
plant was also organized for the Ukrainian delegation as part of its visit
to Angarsk.

As Ukrainian News earlier reported, Russia proposed in early 2007 that
Ukraine participate in the creation of an international uranium enrichment
center in Angarsk (Irkutsk region of Russia).

Ukraine’s state-owned Ukratomprom nuclear concern and Rosatom recently
signed a protocol on cooperation between Ukrainian and Russian nuclear
industry enterprises.

The Ukrainian Cabinet of Ministers intends to consider Russia’s proposal to
participate in the work of an international uranium enrichment center in
Angarsk. Ukratomprom and Rosatom plan to compile and agree a list of
cooperation projects by July 1, 2007.                           -30-
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10. SWISS 3D CAPITAL INVESTMENT AND CONSULTING COMPANY
        TO OPEN OFFICE IN KYIV, INTERESTED IN URANIUM SECTOR
                           Ukraine ninth in the world in uranium extraction

Interfax Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine, Sunday, June 17, 2007

KYIV – Zurich-based 3D Capital AG (Switzerland), which specialized in
organizing IPOs on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange (FSE) for companies

with small amounts of capital, is entering the Eastern European market and
opening an office in Kyiv.

“After the opening of the office in Frankfurt, 3D Capital indicates its
presence on the attractive Eastern European market by opening an office in
Kyiv,” reads the company’s press release issued on Monday.

3D Capital said that its arrival in Ukraine is linked with interest of
companies located in Switzerland in such sectors of the Ukrainian economy

as energy and mining.

In particular, in the third quarter 2007, an international company located
in Switzerland, which is engaged in investing in the energy and uranium
sectors, is to be quoted on the FSE, reads the release.

3D Capital said that since 1996, uranium extraction in Ukraine has doubled
and reached 800 tonnes per year, which puts the country ninth in the world
in uranium extraction, and the country plans to increase the extraction to
3,000 tonnes per year.

The company also said that one of the companies from its investment
portfolio is in talks on receiving a concession to mine gold in Ukraine.

In 2006, 3D Capital enlarged its portfolio of consulting mandates to receive
the status of public companies by nine, to 25, and plans to increase this
number to 31 this year, next year to 39, and in 2007 to help at least 10
companies gain listings on the exchange. The company is conducting the
diversification of its business to the mining business.

In December 2006, 3D Capital placed 24.2 million of its own stocks, worth
around EUR 2.5 each, on the FSE. This year, the company plans to open
offices in London and New York.                       -30-

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11.   GEORGIA BUILDS ENERGY CORRIDOR TO CUT TIES WITH
RUSSIAN MASTERS, THERE IS NO ALTERNATIVE SAYS PRESIDENT

By James Brooke, Bloomberg, Tbilisi, Georgia, Wed, June 20, 2007

TBILISI, Georgia – The white marble Stalin museum in Gori, Georgia, the
dictator’s hometown, will soon be overshadowed by a new attraction: a
military base built to train Georgian troops for NATO missions.

Gori’s transformation from Soviet pilgrimage site to an outpost of the
U.S.-led military alliance underscores Georgia’s drive to sever its ties to
Russia.

Georgia’s determination to assert its independence, and its location between
oil-rich central Asia and the Black Sea, has made it a conduit for energy
shipments to world markets.

International investors are pumping more than $3 billion into Georgia to
build pipelines, ports and refineries that will allow oil and gas from
Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan to bypass established trade routes through Russia.
That has angered the Kremlin, which last year imposed a trade embargo on
Georgia.

“There is no alternative” for the countries of central Asia, President
Mikheil Saakashvili said in the capital, Tbilisi. “Considering that Russia
is on one hand their partner but also their competitor, they have an obvious
interest in having an alternative — the Black Sea corridor.”

Georgia is the most dramatic example of the geopolitical shift taking place
in the former Soviet Union.

From Estonia in the north to Azerbaijan in the south, Russia increasingly is
confronted by former Soviet republics that are expanding links to the U.S.
and Europe.

That has sparked a backlash in Russia, with President Vladimir Putin
decrying the expansion of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and U.S.
plans to build a missile defense system in Eastern Europe.
                                      ‘REAL OUTLIERS’
“Georgia and the Baltic states are the real outliers, and the Russians have
gone out of their way to be really nasty with all of them,” said Andrew C.
Kuchins, director of the Russia and Eurasia program at the Center for
Strategic and International Studies in Washington. By punishing Georgia and
the Baltics, the Kremlin is trying to reverse the drift toward the U.S.
among other former Soviet republics, he said.

Georgia, a nation of 4.6 million people on the eastern shore of the Black
Sea, was ruled by Russia for most of the period from 1801 until it declared
independence in 1991.

The country cemented its turn to the west in 2004, when Saakashvili replaced
former Soviet boss Eduard Shevardnadze and pledged to steer the country
toward membership in NATO and the European Union.

Russia opposes Georgia’s bid for NATO membership. The Baltic states of
Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania have already joined the alliance, and
Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko wants his country to join.
                                     ‘NOT A FAN CLUB’
“NATO is not a fan club of democracies; NATO is a military bloc, a military
and political alliance,” said Andrei Denisov, Russia’s first deputy foreign
minister. “With all these hectic activities to engage Ukraine and Georgia
into NATO, to have these half-baked members in NATO, what should we feel?”

Yet Russia can’t afford to antagonize Georgia. Putin wants Russia to enter
the World Trade Organization before he leaves office next May. Admission
requires treaties with each member state, including Georgia. A first round
of talks broke up last month without agreement.

Saakashvili says he’s wants the Kremlin to let Georgia install customs
control points in Abkhazia and South Ossetia, two breakaway regions
controlled by Russia.

“I want to see what Georgia gets to sign off on WTO,” Clifford Isaak,
managing director for the Caucasus region at PricewaterhouseCoopers, said in
Tbilisi. “Unless Georgia gets something big it is not going to happen.”
                                      ECONOMY BOOMS
Divorce from Russia hasn’t condemned Georgia to economic collapse. The
country’s gross domestic product grew at an annual rate of 13 percent in the
first quarter, driven by international investment and trade with western
Europe.

The government is reducing taxes, cutting red tape and adopting pro-investor
policies, according to the American Chamber of Commerce in Tbilisi.

“The corruption has more or less disappeared from the traffic police, from
customs,” said Esben Emborg, president of the chamber and general manager
of Nestle SA’s local unit. “This is a much more level playing field than it
used to be. Anyone who runs a serious business will do well.”

Last summer, London-based BP Plc started pumping 800,000 barrels of oil a
day through a 1,116-mile pipeline that stretches from Azerbaijan through
Georgia to Ceyhan on Turkey’s Mediterranean coast.

Separately, BP and Norway’s Statoil ASA are shipping 1 million cubic meters
of gas a day from Azerbaijan to Georgia, replacing 20 percent of imports
from Russia. By December, the pipeline will be linked to Turkey and through
it to Europe.
                                      ENERGY CORRIDOR
“Georgia is in a critical position in the East-West energy corridor,” said
David Glendinning, a spokesman for the BP Plc venture that built and now
operates the pipeline. “The East-West energy corridor is a reality.”

Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan, just across the Caspian Sea, have more than 46
billion barrels of oil reserves, 59 percent of those in Russia, the world’s
largest energy exporter, according to BP.

On May 25, Georgia approved a $1 billion oil refinery that KazMunaiGaz, a
Kazakh state-owned oil and gas producer, plans to build at Batumi on the
Black Sea coast. The State Oil Company of the Azerbaijan Republic plans to
build a similar project.

“We would like to get gas and more supplies of oil from the Caspian Sea
region,” European Energy Commissioner Andris Piebalgs said April 30 at a
press conference in Brussels, where he spoke alongside Georgian Foreign
Minister Gela Bezhuashvili. Georgia is ready to provide the necessary supply
corridors toward the European Union.”
                                    HIGHWAYS, PORTS
Near Gori, where a medieval fortress overlooks the vineyards that produce
Georgia’s famous red wines, crews are paving the first stretch of a
600-mile, four-lane highway from Azerbaijan’s capital, Baku, to Batumi. Work
is also starting on a railroad linking Georgia and Turkey.

Outside the Black Sea town of Poti, Georgian officials plan to create a free
economic zone, reducing most taxes to zero to spur development. Earlier this
month, the investment authority of Ras Al Khaimah, one of the seven members
of the United Arab Emirates, agreed to develop the project.

The authority is preparing a master plan for what could be a multibillion
dollar port, industrial zone and power project, said General Manager Raman
Iyer.

“This is traffic basically across the Silk Road, traditionally the road from
Asia, toward the Middle East and Europe,” Saakashvili said.
                                 RUSSIAN EMBARGO
Georgia’s emergence as a competitor helped prompt Russia to crack down

on its former colony last year.

Russia cut all travel and import links, citing Georgia’s expulsion of
Russian soldiers accused of spying. It also deported about 4,000 of the
estimated 1 million Georgians working in Russia, mostly for alleged visa
violations.

OAO Gazprom, Russia’s state-controlled gas export monopoly, raised prices

to $235 per 1,000 cubic meters, four times 2005 levels, as part of a plan to
phase out Soviet-era “friendship pricing.”

The trade ban taught Georgians to look elsewhere. “We were concentrated too
much in Russia,” said Badri Japardize, whose Borjomi mineral water brand
lost $20 million in Russia last year. “We are reallocating our resources to
the Baltic states, U.K., Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan. Our U.S. sales have gone
from 20,000 bottles to 3 million.”

Looking south, Georgia dropped visa requirements for Turkish citizens last
year, and Turkish Airlines now treats Georgia’s new airport in Batumi as
part of its domestic network.

While the Russian flag is almost invisible in Tbilisi, the blue and gold
European Union flag is everywhere. “This is a way of preparing people to
think of themselves as Europeans,” Nestle’s Emborg said.
                            GEORGE BALANCHINE STREET
U.S. influence is on display at a new $62 million airport terminal in
Tbilisi, where the gates are emblazoned with the English words “Welcome to
Georgia.” Taxis traveling to the new Marriott Courtyard hotel head down
George W. Bush Street.

At the corner of George Balanchine and John Shalikashvili Streets, two
boulevards recently named for prominent Georgian- Americans, stands the new
U.S. embassy, a $56 million building where 480 people work.

On May 2, the U.S. Navy destroyer USS The Sullivans conducted exercises

with the Georgian Navy on the Black Sea, for 150 years a Russian lake. On the
same day, General David McKiernan, commander of the U.S. Army in Europe,
arrived in Georgia to watch U.S.-led military exercises.

Georgia’s success in distancing itself from Russia may teach the Kremlin to
moderate its stance toward the new nations on its fringe, said Thomas de
Waal, Caucasus editor of the London-based Institute for War and Peace
Reporting.
                              WANING RUSSIAN INFLUENCE
“Russia is rich, but it is losing its influence heavily in the South
Caucasus — it is relying disastrously on hard power,” he said by e-mail.

“The Russian blockade has pushed Georgia further into the American embrace,
and Russia is doing nothing to cultivate its major asset in the region, the
Russian language.”

Back in Gori, one mile from the museum marking Stalin’s birthplace, a
Turkish-Georgian company is building a military base that will comply with
NATO standards and house a brigade of Georgian troops. Nearby, a billboard
displays a photograph of Saakashvili and Bush shaking hands.      -30-
—————————————————————————————————-
To contact the reporter on this story: James Brooke in Tbilisi through
Moscow at jbrooke2@bloomberg.net
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http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601085&sid=aPAH1Ick09nM

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12.       PUTIN CHECKMATES EUROPE’S ENERGY HOPES

COMMENTARY: By Keith C. Smith, Senior Associate
Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS)
Washington, D.C., June 2007

        RUSSIAN SUSPICION CONFRONTS WESTERN FAITH
The European Commission and leading politicians in Europe seem able to
couner Russia’s willingness – and ability – to block the EU’s plans to
diversify the continent’s pipeline systems in order to diversify its sources
of oil and gas.

Some leaders even appear surprised that Russia is able to stop Central Asian
states of Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan from sending their growing
energy resources directly to Europe.

It is readily apparent that these countries could receive much greater
profit than they do via the present system in which Moscow acts as their
energy middleman.

More worrisome is that Europe is only slowly coming to grips with the
willingness of individual EU members, such as Hungary, Slovakia and Bulgaria
to reach separate deals with Russia that either thwart or seriously delay
official EU plans to diversify sources of energy imported into Europe.

What will it take for Europe to understand that they are competing with a
Russian leadership that does not believe in the win-win concept that drives
most economic leaders in Europe and America?

The KGB and GRU veterans who run the Kremlin and Russia’s energy companies
are fixated on national power and suspicious of any competitor’s motives.

The Putin Administration believes that the international respect that it so
desperately craves comes from wielding its energy resources, including the
use of energy blackmail and hidden financial arrangements with foreign
political groups.

The current Russian leadership also clings to the belief that profit made by
Western energy companies operating in Russia only comes at the expense of
the Russian people – or at least from the bank accounts of its new
political/business oligarchy.

Notwithstanding repeated disruptions since 1990 of energy supplies to the
West (one should include the Baltic States and Ukraine) Brussels, Berlin,
Paris and Rome still apparently cling to the belief that they are somehow
immune from Russian economic warfare.  The cyber war just unleashed by the
Kremlin on Estonia should be a wake up call.

But why hasn’t the West already reacted to the gas cut- offs to Ukraine and
Georgia in January 200(6), or to Lithuania, Belarus and Georgia also in
2006?
            SELF-DELUSION AND NON-TRANSPARENCY
In the past two years, President Putin has made 13 visits to the leaders of
Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.  Meanwhile, Manuel Barroso,
Chancellor Merkel, ex-President Chirac and President Bush have scarcely
glanced at the region.

It goes without saying that those diplomats from the EU and U.S. who have
visited Kazakhstan or Turkmenistan never had anywhere near the political
clout of President Putin when it came to wooing -or strong arming- Central
Asian leaders.

In any event, a Europe with no enforceable common energy policy should not
expect to compete effectively with a Russia that plays by a different rule
book – whether in Central Asia or in Central Europe.

While Russia emphasizes politics, including the non-transparent version,
well before economics in advancing its pipeline policies, European
democracies are unable and unwilling to match Russia’s efforts, even when
their energy security and national defense concerns are at stake.

Europe has sat on the sidelines while Russian state companies have taken
dominant stakes in the energy infrastructure of the three Baltic States,
Ukraine, Georgia, Bulgaria, Armenia, Moldova and Greece, and threaten to do
the same in Slovakia, the Czech Republic and Serbia.  Meanwhile, the Turks,
with their crucial supply routes, are now drawing closer to Moscow in their
energy policies.

Russia has recently concluded non-transparent energy deals with Hungary,
Slovakia and Bulgaria (and Ukraine, Moldova and Greece) that undercut EU
energy policy.

The EU Commission responds that it lacks the “competency” to demand that
these agreements be vetted by its Directorate General for Transportation and
Energy or by the Directorate General for Competition Policy.

The same “explanation” was offered when then-Chancellor Schroeder agreed to
a gas pipeline deal with President Putin, even though the agreement raised
serious security and environmental concerns for other EU states.

Should not the fact that this agreement was quietly negotiated by Mattias
Warnig, a former Stasi agent and Cold War colleague of President Putin have
provoked a greater degree of policy coordination and  insistence on
transparency from member states?.  It did not.

Can Europeans genuinely believe that these bilateral deals were reached by
means of open discussion by both sides on the business merits?  Did their
parliaments consider the national security implications of linking their
energy systems more closely with that of Russia?  Does the EU really believe
that the anti-corruption rules of the OECD or EU were scrupulously followed
in all cases?

Even a cursory look at how energy business is conducted inside of Russia
adequately reveals the fundamental nature of these deals in Europe’s own
backyard.

The takeover of Shell’s interests in the Sakhalin project by Gazprom was
tied to alleged environmental concerns; concerns that evaporated as soon as
the majority shares were transferred to friends of the Kremlin.

BP’s interests in Kovytka were threatened by the company’s alleged
non-development of that field; development that was and is prevented by
Russian interests who are now set to take control of this highly desired
energy source.

Meanwhile Russian companies are free to buy controlling shares in Western
companies.  The West plays on a playing field tilted in Russia’s favor.  But
still the game goes on.
                                        CHECKMATE
The Russians are world-class chess players, while their European and
American competitors play gentlemanly amateur croquet.

The Gazprom deal with Hungary is designed to strangle the economic argument
for the Nabucco pipeline that would bring Caspian natural gas to Europe via
Azerbaijan, Turkey and the Balkans.

The Hungarian Government of Prime Minister Gyucsany has come up with a

lame explanation for its action, but the deal was not reached openly, nor was it
debated extensively in Parliament before the Prime Minister flew off to
Moscow for a private chat with Putin.  And why, for that matter, was it
negotiated by Prime Minister Gyurcsany directly with President Putin?

Why, indeed, are all of Russia’s energy agreements negotiated directly with
President Putin?  What Western president or prime minister insists on
negotiating all of the country’s energy deals?  Does it take a rocket
scientist to understand why?

But the same lack of transparency marks Slovakia’s agreement to pass up its
option to buy Yukos’ 49% of Transpetrol, one of Europe’s most strategically
situated energy companies.

Caving in to Russian demands for ownership gives the Kremlin the ability to
block any future Odessa-Brody oil pipeline from the Caspian region, as well
as any gas pipelines that would run from Central Asia to southern Germany
via Slovakia.

Why did the Bulgarians and Greeks agree to give Russia a majority ownership
in the Burgos-Alexandropolous oil pipeline?  Again, a very opaque deal with
Russia completed at a high level and not vetted thoroughly by the EU
Commission.

Perhaps the EU should delegate management of Europe’s energy policy to the
UK’s MI 5 or MI.  At least that betters the odds of a more level playing
field when it comes to pipeline negotiations with Russia and attempts to
guarantee the West’s energy security.                  -30-
————————————————————————————————
NOTE: The Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) is a
private, tax-exempt institution focusing on international public policy
issues. Its research is nonpartisan and nonproprietary. CSIS does not take
specific policy positions; accordingly, all views, positions, and
conclusions expressed in these publications should be understood to be
solely those of the authors.

———————————————————————————————–
[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
========================================================
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========================================================
13. FOUR EX-SOVIET STATES PLEDGE COOPERATION, WESTERN TIES

Agence France Presse (AFP), Baku, Azerbaijan, Tuesday, June 19, 2007

BAKU – Leaders of four ex-Soviet countries vowed Tuesday to boost
cooperation and seek closer ties with the West as they aim to shake off
Russian influence.

The presidents of Georgia and Ukraine, Mikheil Saakashvili and Viktor
Yushchenko, were in the Azerbaijani capital Baku for a summit with
Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and Moldovan Prime Minister Vasile
Tarlev.

Their four countries make up the GUAM (Georgia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan and
Moldova) group of former Soviet states, which is seen as a counterweight to
the Kremlin-led Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS).

Polish President Lech Kaczynski, who was also attending as an observer,
promised to support their efforts to limit what he called “energy blackmail”
by Moscow.

At their meeting the four GUAM states promised to pursue plans to ship

oil from Azerbaijan through Georgia and Ukraine to Europe.

Their efforts were heartily welcomed by Kaczynski, while the staunchly
pro-Western Saakashvili hailed the meeting as “ageopolitical revolution.”

In a clear reference to Russian control of European energy supplies,
Poland’s Kaczynski said that “under conditions of energy blackmail, energy
projects (with GUAM states) are of great interest.”

Azerbaijan is the start point of a strategic new oil pipeline to the West
that has been backed by Washington as a way of reducing Moscow’s grip on

oil supplies from the former Soviet Union, the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan (BTC)
pipeline.

Aliyev, whose country’s oil and gas reserves are keenly sought by fellow
members of GUAM and by the European Union, said the organisation was

gaining in international weight.

“GUAM, in a short time, has turned into a serious organisation. Its goals
are of interest to many countries,” Aliyev said.  By boosting transport and
energy links, GUAM members are “building a bridge between Europe and

Asia,” he said.

Saakashvili thanked Azerbaijan for increasing gas exports to his country
after a large price-hike by Moscow at the end of last year that some critics
saw as politically motivated.

“It was a heartfelt gesture and an important strategic decision,” he said,
adding that GUAM was surpassing the CIS as a basis for cooperation. “GUAM
seriously differs from the CIS, which has become only a club for meetings of
heads of state,” he said.

Kaczynski, Lithuanian President Valdas Adamkus and Romanian President

Traian Basescu attended the talks in a show of support for GUAM’s pro-
Western aspirations. Kaczynski said he would support the efforts of some
GUAM members to join the European Union and NATO.

Aliyev said the members would also present a united front in dealing with
separatist conflicts in their countries. Azerbaijan, Georgia and Moldova are
all dealing with breakaway regions.

But Russian newspapers on Tuesday detected cracks within the GUAM group.
While Georgia and Ukraine have primarily viewed GUAM as a pro-Western
regional bloc, Azerbaijan has been more cautious and Moldova’s position is
unclear.

The Russian newspapers said Moscow would take comfort from the absence on
Tuesday of Moldovan President Vladimir Voronin and the sending of his prime
minister instead.

Voronin is to meet Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow on Friday,
Kommersant newspaper reported. “Moscow managed to strike a pre-emptive

blow against its opponents,” the paper wrote. “Voronin has apparently decided
to stay away from the company of Russia’s enemies.               -30-
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14.          PUTIN’S DEAD UKRAINIAN HORSE

COMMENTARY: By John Marine,
Kyiv Post Senior Journalist, Kyiv, Ukraine,
EurasianHome.org, Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Russian President Vladimir Putin has once again accused Ukraine of
sponging Russian gas. So what else is new?

Nothing – the accusations refer to the past, but Putin’s reasons for
reviving them are in fact very forward looking if not misguided.

If you want to punish someone for doing something that isn’t considered
wrong by everyone else, it’s very convenient to come up with another
justification, even if you have to dig it up from the past.

Speaking in Moscow on the eve of the G-8 summit in Germany, Putin said that
Russia was through with subsidizing Ukraine and other post-Soviet states
with energy resources.

Moreover, he added, the price Ukraine pays for its gas imports would go up
by as much as 17 percent to compensate for past losses.

Ukraine and the rest of Europe have long gotten used to tough talk coming
out of the Kremlin, which has used its position as the continent’s biggest
energy supplier to demand the kind of respect it got during Soviet times.

And although it may be acting against its own best interests in the long
term, Moscow has not hesitated to follow up on its threats.

A year after Ukraine’s Orange Revolution, which set the country on a
distinctly westward course, Russian state gas monopoly Gazprom raised the
price Ukraine pays for its imported gas. It went from around $50.00 per
thousand cubic meters to $130 within the space of a year.

More importantly, the suddenness which with the first price hike was carried
out – during the Christmas holidays in subzero temperatures – led to
temporary shortages in Europe.

In response to international criticism that the Kremlin was trying to reel
in stroppy former satellites, Moscow blamed everything on Kyiv, repeating
earlier allegations that Ukrainians are inveterate gas thieves.

The Kremlin’s key message to Europe seemed to be that the newly independent
states which popped up after the breakup of the Soviet Union were unreliable
in matters of importance. And the delivery of clean burning gas to
environmentally conscious Europe is just such a matter.

Even Belarus, whose dictatorial President Aliaksandr Lukashenka has made the
country a pariah state in the eyes of the West, has had its energy bill
raised unilaterally by Moscow.

Of all former Soviet Republics, Belarus has clearly been the beneficiary of
dirt cheap Russian energy, allowing Lukashenka to pacify the country’s
population with high pensions and low consumer prices.

Ukraine, on the other hand, is a horse of a different color. Pro-Western
Ukrainian President Yushchenko’s team was quick to respond to Putin’s recent
threat.

Oleksandr Chaly, the deputy head of Yushchenko’s Secretariat, called the
Russian leader’s statements “absolutely baseless”.

However, if you throw enough mud at a wall, some of it’s going to stick.
Putin’s intended audience included not only Europe, which gets most of its
eastern gas via Ukraine, but Russians increasingly subject to arbitrary
government, and Ukrainians increasingly doubtful as to who is in charge of
their country.

While Putin has tightened his grip on his country since coming to power,
Yushchenko has lost most of his authority.

That’s why pressure from Moscow is particularly hard felt in Ukraine, which
has found itself wedged between an aloof EU and an indignant Russia.

Chaly tried to parry Putin’s verbal attack by arguing that the price Ukraine
paid for gas delivered from Russia between 1992 and 2000 was lower than the
average paid by Europe.

The fact is that during Soviet times, Russia subsidized Soviet Republics as
well as members of the Warsaw Pact, which have all, to one extent or
another, had their energy bills raised closer to the international market
price since the breakup of the Soviet Union.

Chaly also mentioned Russia’s reliance on the gas pipelines that run through
its former satellite states, noting that Ukraine charges transportation fees
below the international rate. Here, he hit the nail right on the head.

But this is no news to the Kremlin, which has attempted to make itself less
dependent by building pipelines around countries with Western-friendly
regimes such as Ukraine, Poland and the Baltics.

It won’t be easy to replace Ukraine’s transit pipeline, though, which is why
Moscow has continually proposed schemes to gain joint control over it.

Fearing that the country’s pro-Russian parliamentary majority might act
against the nation’s long-term interest, President Yushchenko signed a bill
put forward by the opposition that prohibits transfer of control over the
pipeline.

Unfortunately, what Chaly failed to mention in his arguments is that most if
not all of the gas that Ukraine gets from Russia originates in Central
Asia – about three fourths of Ukraine’s total consumption.

Russia merely transports the Central Asian gas along its pipelines, just as
Ukraine does for Russia.

Not only does this fact blow a hole in Putin’s moral argument that his
country’s generosity is being used, but it also reveals the weakness of
Russia’s position overall.

As Russia began to raise the price it charges for the gas it sells to
Ukraine, Central Asian states like Turkmenistan followed suit.
But for now, the Kremlin still holds a few trump cards, as Central Asia is
dependent on Russian pipelines to market its products.

That’s why Kazakhstan has been cool on US-brokered proposals to build an
oil pipeline around Russia. It would be too risky for the newly independent
state to upset the Region’s power broker.

But as the Chinese and Indian economies continue to heat up, demanding more
and more fuel to drive their expanding economies, Central Asia might
eventually consider other offers.

In the mean time, Ukraine has been courted by Western-based energy giants
offering to explore for newer, less accessible hydrocarbon deposits.

Shell Group obtained exploration license more than a year ago, while US
Marathon has just announced a joint agreement with Ukraine’s state oil and
gas company Naftogaz Ukrayiny.

Simultaneously, Ukraine’s gas-guzzling industry is investing in energy
saving technology.

So as Putin defines his country’s relations with Ukraine, he would be better
off looking to the future, when Russia’s energy monopoly may be a lot less
of a threat to its neighbors.

Accusing Ukraine of sponging or stealing Russian gas is like beating a dead
horse – a horse that doesn’t even belong to Russia.               -30-
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http://www.eurasianhome.org/xml/t/opinion.xml?lang=en&nic=opinion&pid=753
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15.              UKRAINE HAS A CLAIM IN THE G8 TALKS

COMMENTARY: By Yulia Tymoshenko, Member of Parliament,

Leader of the Opposition, Former Prime Minister of Ukraine
Le Monde, Paris France, Thursday, June 7, 2007 (in French)
Action Ukraine Report (AUR) #853, Article 15, (in English)
Washington, D.C., Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Over the course of the past two months, as Ukraine’s political crisis
deepened, I have heard the West repeatedly admonish Ukraine, saying:

“Once again, the young Ukrainian democracy is vacillating”.

The European Union has looked at Ukraine as if it was a difficult and
immature child. But Ukrainians showed the world that they could control
their destiny.

A political compromise was reached, setting the date for new parliamentary
elections on September 30th,, thus the political deadlock. This agreement
among competing parties is a victory of national interest over personal and
factional rivalries.

Since this event, a new and growing political crisis has co-opted the
attention of European countries: Russia has threatened to find new targets
in Europe if the United States moves forward with its intent to install a
missile defense system in Poland and the Czech Republic.

Western leaders have expressed grave concern at the nature of these threats,
and they are right to do so. Countless times I have attempted to call the
attention of European leaders to the potential dangers posed by a resurgent
and increasingly aggressive Russia.

I do not believe that a new Cold War, one that would divide Europe anew, is
imminent. Yet we must certainly consider Russia’s long diplomatic history,
traits that have certainly not changed substantially since the collapse of
the Soviet Union.  Russia continues to seek to influence and shape the
political landscape in its near abroad; this includes Ukraine.

The numerous challenges that exist within the geopolitical triangle that is
Russia-Ukraine-EU require a cooperative and trilateral approach. On the one
hand, there is the issue of collective security and the process of the
steady democratization of the post-Soviet space.

On the other is the issue of a common energy market. Yet the possibilities
for partnership are real and, as Russia’s immediate neighbor, Ukraine must
contribute to this debate in the G8 summit in Heiligendamm.  Resolution of
the ‘Russian question’ is vital.

It is time to make Russia understand that, in spite of its economic
leverage, articulated principally via the actions of Gazprom, European
dependence on Russian energy is really a co-dependence. Suppliers depend
just as much on consumers as consumers on suppliers. This is why we need a
genuine “energy alliance.”

Grandstanding must yield to moderation and a reassessment of Russian power,
which is altogether limited. It is our duty to reconsider our relation with
a Russia which, fortunately for all of us, recovered from the chaos of the
Yeltsin years.

It is time to formulate a new diplomacy that is no longer founded on
resentment and cynicism, and to adopt simultaneously realistic and
constructive steps towards progress on the critical issues in our common
interest.

In this international context, our elections next September could be a
turning point both for Ukrainian political life, as well as the future of
Russo-European relations, and thus world stability as a whole.

The successful democratization of Ukraine will deliver an important message
to Moscow – it must re-examine its regional and political ambitions. In the
Russian collective consciousness, Ukraine is Russia. Ukraine’s elections
could thus mark a decisive stage towards normalization.

This is why I supported whole-heartedly the new parliamentary elections,
because our constitutional system is currently deadlocked. Our
political-economic institutions are still weak and must be deeply reformed.
It is this issue of reform upon which I wish to commit myself to
participate.

Ukraine needs a new strategy of political, social and economic development.
It is a priority for all Ukrainians. Without a normal, and stable, political
system, we can make no further progress.

We must reform the institutions because only they can guarantee a proper
democratic process, political life, business community, and improve the
standard of living of Ukrainians.

To put an end to the political impotence; to gather all Ukrainians around a
genuine program for Ukraine, instead of dividing them – this is my party’s
goal.

By reaching for European standards of governance, with governing teams
invested in the public welfare rather than their personal enrichment,
Ukraine will be able to become a credible political actor on the European
continent.

Nicolas Sarkozy promised to have a frank dialogue with Vladimir Putin. This
frankness is very much needed for everybody – for Russia, France, Ukraine
and the European Union as a whole.                          -30-
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16.                 THE LIAR’S LAST REUNION
          Bush and Putin have exemplified the arrogance of power run amuck

COMMENTARY: By Nina L. KHRUSHCHEVA
New York, New York, Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Next week’s G-8 summit will probably be the last such meeting for Presidents
George W. Bush and Vladimir Putin. Seven years ago, at their first meeting
in Ljubljana, Slovenia, Bush looked into Putin’s eyes and somehow spotted
the soul of a Christian gentleman, not that of a secret policeman.

Next week, they shouldn’t be surprised if they see a mirror of each other,
because both men have exemplified the arrogance of power.

Bush and Putin both came to power in 2000, a year when their countries were
scrambling to regain international respect, Russia from the chaos of the
Yeltsin years and the US from the failed impeachment of President Clinton.
Each country thought it was getting an unthreatening mediocrity.

But both men, on finding themselves in positions of authority, ruled from
their default positions: Bush as an evangelical convinced that God was on
America’s side, and Putin as a KGB graduate convinced that all power comes
from intimidation and threats.

And what was the result? Convinced that he is right, and incurious to hear
contrary arguments, Bush felt free to undermine the rule of law in America
with warrantless domestic surveillance, erosion of due process, and defense
of torture, in addition to misleading the public and refusing to heed expert
advice or recognize facts on the ground.

From the tax cuts in 2001 to the war in Iraq, Bush’s self-righteous
certitude led him to believe that he could say and do anything to get his
way.

The damage Bush’s self-confidence and self-delusion has inflicted was
magnified by his gross overestimation of America’s power. Quite simply, he
thought that America could go it alone in pursuing his foreign policy
because no one could stop him.

While his father lined up world support, and troops from over a dozen
countries, for the first Gulf War, the son thought that allies were more
hindrance than help; except for Tony Blair, he did not care to have them.

Four years later, Bush’s arrogance and mendacity have been exposed for the
entire world, including the American public, to see.

Putin also succumbed to the same arrogance of power. Buoyed by high oil
prices, he now seeks to bestride the world as if the social calamities that
bedevil Russia – a collapsing population, a spiraling AIDS and tuberculosis
crisis, corruption mushrooming to levels unimagined by Yeltsin – do not
matter.

At a high-level security meeting in Munich this past February, Putin, who
usually draws on the secretive, manipulative, and confrontational Cold War
paradigm of what constitutes Russian diplomatic behavior, lashed out at the
United States with the sort of language unheard of since Khrushchev said “We
will bury you.” American actions were “unilateral,” “illegitimate,” and had
forged a “hotbed of further conflicts.”

Putin’s assessment of US unilateralism (if stripped of its overheated
rhetoric) may be correct; the trouble is that he lacks credibility to extol
moderation in foreign policy. High oil prices have helped him rebuild and
centralize the “strong state” that was his goal from the outset of his
presidency.

But his recent attempts to use Russia’s energy resources for political
coercion in Georgia, Ukraine, Belarus and elsewhere have exposed Russia as
an unreliable partner, unnerving even the Chinese, who do not wish to see a
reconstituted Russian empire on their border.

The Russian public, habituated to authoritarianism, wants Russia’s rulers to
be firm. Yet the true test of a ruler is not to pander to his people’s
expectations, but to peer into the future and match the country’s
aspirations with its needs and capacities.

In this, Putin’s arrogance is failing Russia miserably. His monomaniacal
drive to centralize power is driving out the very expertise that the country
needs to flourish.

Shell and BP are being expelled from the oil industry at the very moment
that Russian oil production is declining dramatically. His embittered
attempts to counter American power are equally short-sighted: helping Iran
develop its nuclear program and selling high-tech weapons to China are
hardly in Russia’s long-term strategic interest.

As usual, history is set on fast-forward in America. Everyone can now see
the gross and historic failures of the Bush presidency. Indeed, the American
people have preempted the historians, rebuking Bush by electing a Democratic
Congress in November 2006.

Meanwhile, Russia’s troubles remain hidden behind the strong arm tactics and
oil bloated coffers of Putin’s autocratic bureaucracy.

But the fact that Russia’s social and economic diseases are going
unaddressed has consigned the country to the long-term decline that his
presidency was supposed to reverse.

In the twentieth century, the Cold War parity between Russia and America was
apparent. For Russians, America was an evil empire, the world of capitalist
exploitation and a nuclear superpower, but also a cradle of economic
prosperity and individual freedom.

For America, Russia, too, was an evil empire, the world of communist
expansionism and a nuclear superpower, but also a cradle of science, spirit,
and soul.

A similar parity characterized the Bush-Putin era. Unlike America, however,
Russia’s people have not yet understood the price of arrogant power run
amuck. (www.project-syndicate.org)
————————————————————————————————
NOTE: Nina KHRUSHCHEVA teaches international affairs at The New

School in New York. Her book “Imagining Nabokov: Russia Between Art
and Politics” will be published this autumn.
———————————————————————————————–
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17.   U.S. AMB WILLIAM TAYLOR: “I HOPE MR. BUSH COMES TO
                  UKRAINE, BUT NOT BEFORE THE ELECTIONS”

INTERVIEW: With William Taylor, Ambassador of the USA to Ukraine
By Mykola Siruk, The Day Weekly Digest #17
Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, 12 June 2007

Does the US believe that Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada is legitimate and that the
political crisis has been resolved? Has the crisis affected relations
between Ukraine and the US in any way?

These and other questions are answered in the following interview with
William TAYLOR, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the
USA to Ukraine.
        “I DO NOT QUESTION THE PRESIDENT’S WORD”
[The Day] Mr. Ambassador, you must have received a note from President
Viktor Yushchenko on the illegitimacy of the Verkhovna Rada. Do you
consider the Ukrainian parliament legitimate?

[Ambassador Taylor] “What is obviously legitimate is the deal made by the
president, the prime minister, and the Verkhovna Rada speaker. We are all
very glad that the three leaders reached an agreement.

“Holding an election on Sept. 30 is, naturally, part of this deal. The three
leaders also agreed on how to hold these elections in a lawful,
constitutional, and peaceful way.

“In our view, this plan of action appears to be fully legitimate. As for the
details of how this agreement will be fulfilled, we understand that the ball
will start rolling when at least 151 Verkhovna Rada deputies resign their
seats.

“This raises the question of how this should be done. Who should announce
it, what is the role of the Verkhovna Rada speaker, and what is the role of
the Central Election Commission? And these kinds of detail should not be
commented on by outsiders.

“All we can say is that we are glad that an agreement has been reached on
how to legitimately head into the new elections. We can only encourage all
the sides to move in the projected direction.”

[The Day] Do you consider the note lawful?

[Ambassador Taylor] “Well, I do not question the president’s word. I
attended the president’s briefing last Wednesday. He explained his stand
with clear and carefully-worded phrases. The president said that the
deputies had completed their work, as far as their powers as members of the
Verkhovna Rada of this convocation are concerned.”
             “IT IS IMPORTANT THAT THE AGREEMENT

                                     BE IMPLEMENTED”
[The Day] Do you think the crisis in Ukraine has been resolved?

[Ambassador Taylor] “I think it has. The agreement that the president, the
prime minister and the speaker reached outlines a way that is peaceful,
democratic, and constitutional. Naturally, it is important that the
agreement be honored and implemented.”

[The Day] What would be a sign that the agreement is being honored? Would it
be holding the elections on Sept. 30 or maybe some other event that should
take place before this date?

[Ambassador Taylor] “Naturally, an important component of this deal is the
resignation of at least 151 deputies. This seems to be the case, although
reports are circulating that some parliamentarians have changed their minds
about this. One way or another, it will be important that at least 151 MPs,
or even more, do this.”

[The Day] The Ukrainian media reported that David Kramer, Deputy Assistant
Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs, and William Miller,
former US ambassador to Ukraine, visited Ukraine during the crisis. You also
had meetings with the representatives of all parties to the conflict. Did
the US play any role in reaching this agreement?

[Ambassador Taylor] “The US has been speaking with all sides in the
government and all the representatives of the opposition. Every time our
people from Washington visit us, they also meet high-ranking Ukrainian
officials.

“This happened when David Kramer came and this also happens in other

cases. In other words, we try to seize every opportunity for these kinds of
contacts.

“As for the US role in reaching this agreement, I agree here with the
president of Ukraine. The Ukrainians arrived at this agreement by
themselves.”
            “THERE WERE MOMENTS WHEN WE FELT

                                SERIOUS CONCERN”
[The Day] Has this crisis affected relations between Ukraine and the US in
any way?

[Ambassador Taylor] “The United States government in Washington, as well as
its representatives here, was closely watching the unfolding crisis. We said
repeatedly: we hope Ukraine comes out of this crisis as a more democratic,
more united, and more European country.

“There were moments when we were concerned that Ukraine might ride out this
crisis without gaining more democratic features. We were also worried that
potential clashes, in which interior ministry forces could take part, might
leave Ukraine less united.

“Since we are firm supporters of Ukraine’s movement towards Europe, we
feared that such dubious actions of the opposing sides in the heat of the
crisis might make Ukraine less attractive to Europe. In other words, there
were moments when we felt serious concern.

“This is why, as I said earlier, we are very glad that the three leaders
reached this agreement. If any lessons have been learned from this
situation, which will help Ukraine become more democratic and united and
come closer to Europe, all this was worth it.”
         “UKRAINE IS A DEMOCRACY THAT IS MOVING

                                    TOWARDS MATURITY”
[The Day] The US and the EU showed restraint vis-a-vis the situation in
Ukraine. But Russia’s leader said that Ukraine was heading toward “tyranny.”
Can this phrase be taken seriously?

[Ambassador Taylor] “I would not like to comment on Russian statements. I
heard Russia’s Ambassador Chernomyrdin saying that the statements of
Russia’s top leadership are no joke. Our view is that Ukraine is a democracy
that is moving towards maturity.

“The Ukrainian people are expecting and demanding from their government that
the country remain on this democratic path so that Russia as well as other
countries in this region can see how the democratic process should unfold.”

[The Day] “In a wide-ranging interview, Putin said recently that if some
countries meet democratic standards, this means they are serving somebody

else’s interests, mainly American.

[Ambassador Taylor] “I think it is in the interests of Russia, the US,
Europe and, of course, for Ukraine to remain on this democratic path.”

[The Day] Then why is the US planning to cut its aid to Ukraine? Does this
mean that democracy in Ukraine has strengthened to such a degree that it
doesn’t require as much aid from the US?

[Ambassador Taylor] “In a way, this truly is an indicator of the progress
that Ukraine has made in its democratic development. But perhaps even more
this reflects the position of Washington about concerted efforts to build
democracy in some other regions of the world.

“We would like new democracies that are struggling for survival in other
parts of world to achieve the same level of development as Ukraine. But we
will continue to support Ukrainian democracy.”
  “I ACCEPT THE IDEA THAT DEMOCRACY CANNOT BE
                               IMPOSED FROM OUTSIDE”
[The Day] Lately, many experts have been saying that democracy cannot be
introduced by force in other countries, and they cite the example of Iraq.
Do you think it is time to change the approaches to expanding or promoting
democracy in other countries, especially in the Muslim world?

[Ambassador Taylor] “I accept the idea that democracy cannot be imposed
from outside. What we are trying to do in Iraq is to let the Iraqis decide
by themselves. For them to be able to decide what form of government they
need, we must provide them with at least some measure of internal security.

“It would be best if the Iraqis themselves could ensure this security. We
and our coalition allies are working there to help achieve a kind of
security that will enable the Iraqi people to decide what form of government
they need.

“As you know, I worked in Baghdad for some time, and I can assure you that
the Iraqis have their own opinion of what kind of government and what form
of democracy they need.”

[The Day] What exactly?

[Ambassador Taylor] “They very much value the right to elect their leaders.
I was there during one of the first elections in Iraq. Nobody knew on that
morning if the Iraqis would be brave enough to go to the polls and vote.

“Everything began with one or two people at a time coming into the polling
station. Then five or six, and finally all the Iraqis headed out in droves
to the stations.

“There are a lot of challenges facing the Iraqis. But it is obvious that the
Iraqis – Shiites, Sunnis, and Kurds alike – want to freely elect their
leaders.”

[The Day] When do you think the Iraqis will have a level of democracy that
will allow them to govern their country without foreign assistance and to
ensure internal security?

[Ambassador Taylor] “I think they are capable of ruling themselves. What
they are still unable to do on their own is ensure an adequate level of
personal safety for Iraqi citizens.

“I think the international community, including the US, should help them for
some additional time, at least as long as they want to ask for this help.”
 THE POLITICAL WILL OF UKRAINE’S LEADERSHIP IS THE

 KEY TO THE SUCCESS OF ANTICORRUPTION PROGRAMS
[The Day] President Yushchenko recently urged the US and the EU to help
combat corruption. Have you given him an answer yet?

[Ambassador Taylor] “I made note of this request. I am pleased that the
president has again emphasized that he is aware of the negative impact that
corruption has on governmental structures and society as a whole.

“We are actually in the process of reacting to these queries: we are now
offering 45 million dollars’ worth of anti-corruption assistance to the
judiciary, education, and accountability of governmental bodies to the
public.”

[The Day] Does this mean providing additional funds apart from the
above-mentioned 45 million dollars?

[Ambassador Taylor] “Of course, we will want to see the way the programs
already in operation are being carried out. Then we will see if any
additional funds are needed. But in all probability, the political will of
Ukraine’s leadership is by far the most important component of the success
of anti-corruption programs.

“On our part, we can only issue calls for this. But this political will
should emanate from the very top, i.e., the state’s political leadership.”

[The Day] In other words, you see the will on Yushchenko’s part but not on
the other part of the governmental spectrum?

[Ambassador Taylor] “This should come from all the country’s leaders.”

[The Day] Last year plans were made for President Bush to visit Ukraine
and meet Yushchenko this year. Is Mr. Bush coming to Ukraine?

[Ambassador Taylor] “I hope so. I doubt this will happen before the
elections. President Bush usually visits countries after they have held a
democratic election and have a stable government that works and has a
program of action.

“I also think that President Bush would not like it to seem that the US
government is involved in the pre-election process and the election
campaign. It is a Ukrainian election, and Ukrainians themselves should be
making their choice.”                                  -30-
————————————————————————————————
LINK: http://www.day.kiev.ua/182793/
————————————————————————————————
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18.   U.S. PRESIDENT BUSH MAY VISIT UKRAINE IN 2008

Interfax Ukraine News, Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, June 18, 2007

KYIV – U.S. President George W. Bush may visit Ukraine in 2008, deputy

head of the Ukrainian presidential secretariat Oleksandr Chaly has said.
“Under earlier understandings the visit of President George W. Bush is
slated for 2008,” he told the press in Kyiv on Saturday.
Chaly also said that Ukrainian President Viktor Yuschenko is planning to
visit the United States. “We are preparing a working visit of the president
to the United States,” he said.                      -30-
———————————————————————————————–
[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
========================================================
19. UKRAINE: THE ISSUE OF EURO-ATLANTIC STANDARDS

By James Sherr (presented in his behalf)
Session VIII:  Security Advantages of Euro-Atlantic Integration
Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic Future: International Forum I
Diplomatic Academy of Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine, 11-13 June 2007

Published by the Action Ukraine Report (AUR) #853, Article 19
Washington, D.C., Wednesday, June 20, 2007

As ever, my views are my own, and they do not necessarily correspond to
those of the British government. (Mr. Sherr was not able to attend the Forum
so his remarks were presented on his behalf).

Let us put this question in context.

1. Until Ukraine makes substantial, sustainable progress in adopting
Euro-Atlantic standards, the advantages of integration will be outweighed by
its strains, traumas and risks.

2. The most fundamental of these standards is public trust in the integrity
of state institutions, beginning with the judiciary, but encompassing as a
sine qua non the National Security and Defence Council, the Ministry of
Defence and Armed Forces, the security and intelligence services and the
departments of law enforcement.

This explains why NATO and the EU have put such emphasis on helping

Ukraine develop its institutional capacity.

To mature democracies, the character of institutions matters more than the
character of politicians.  When politicians are stronger than institutions,
the country is hostage to their personal whims, ambitions and weaknesses.
Democracies cease to be effective, and political conflict threatens the
foundations of the state.

3. The issue of Euro-Atlantic standards-which is essentially apolitical-must
not be confused with the issue of membership in Euro-Atlantic institutions,
which is a matter of political choice. Sweden, Switzerland and Finland are
not members of NATO.

Yet their armed forces, security services and law enforcement structures
adhere to the same high standards of accountability, transparency, and civil
democratic control as in Britain, The Netherlands and Germany.

Why? Because these standards enhance security. They strengthen training
regimes, career development and competence; they  encourage honesty,
communication and the sharing of expertise; they provide value for money,
and they secure public support.

Debate about NATO membership in Ukraine will inevitably be political. But it
is time that the issue of Euro-Atlantic standards were removed from
political controversy.

If Ukraine were to join NATO, what would the advantages be?

1. From the moment that Ukraine joined NATO, it would never have to deal
with any serious security problem on its own.  It would be part of a
collective structure in which risks and burdens are shared.  Why should this
matter?

For good or ill, Ukraine is situated in an extremely important area of the
world, not only for Ukrainians, but for other states and also for powerful,
transnational criminal structures. President Kuchma once remarked that
Ukraine is not Switzerland.  Neither is it China.

It is neither safe enough nor powerful enough to master its own geopolitical
environment.  If it turns its back on Euro-Atlantic integration, it will be
obliged to defer to another neighbour who might not have Ukraine’s interests
at heart and whose commitment to its independence is questionable.

2. Ukraine would also be joining an organisation that shares costs and
provides disproportionate benefits to its less powerful members.  Even a
member as powerful as the United Kingdom spends only 2.2 per cent of its

GDP on defence, and most members spend less.

Even the UK cannot meet the full spectrum of its defence and security needs
with the money it spends.  But thanks to NATO, its integrated military
structures and its strategic assets, it can rely upon support from others
when its interests are threatened.

3. Does that mean that joining NATO will save money?  Not necessarily.
Meeting Euro-Atlantic standards costs money.

Decriminalising the state, modernising and reforming the police, security
and border services costs money.  But what are the costs of keeping things
as they are?  Security costs more money than insecurity.

Security inside NATO will cost more money than insecurity outside it.  These
choices need to be faced squarely and realistically.  And they need to be
made by Ukrainians.  It is not for NATO to make them.

4. Finally, Ukraine will be joining an organisation that makes decisions by
consensus.  And it will be joining an organisation based upon the
sovereignty of its members.  The Iraq conflict never became a NATO conflict
for the simple reason that several NATO members opposed it.

And whilst 26 members have agreed that NATO should conduct military
operations in Afghanistan, not all members contribute armed forces to that
operation, and some do so under restricted rules of engagement.  No one but
Ukrainians will have the authority to send Ukrainians into armed conflict.

Finally, what are the possible disadvantages of joining NATO?

There are many mythical disadvantages.  But in reality, there is only one.
It is obvious, and today it divides Ukraine: the risk, as continually
reiterated by Moscow, that joining NATO will have ‘grave consequences’ for
Ukraine’s relations with Russia.

A hasty, ill-prepared path to NATO membership would turn this risk into a
threat.  But the threat is only made real by the divisions and
vulnerabilities of Ukraine. The challenge is to overcome these
vulnerabilities and, by doing so, change the calculus of thinking in Russia.

That challenge dictates a more gradual, but also more determined course
towards integration: improving public understanding, diminishing regional
divisions and developing Ukraine’s capacity, cohesion and samostiynist’.

Russia cannot be expected to respect Ukraine’s choice until it is clear that
Ukraine has made one-and until Ukraine has the capacity to act on it.

NATO will continue to help Ukraine make choices and act upon them.  The
question today, as in the past, is whether Ukraine will help itself.   -30-
————————————————————————————————-
CONTACT: James Sherr, james.sherr@lincoln.oxford.ac.uk. Our thanks

to Walter Zaryckyj for providing the AUR with James Sherr’s remarks.
————————————————————————————————-
[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
========================================================
20. UKRAINE: NATO READY TO BACK INTEGRATION WITH EUROPE
                           Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic Future Forum in Kyiv

New Europe, The European Weekly, Issue 734
Brussels, Belgium, Saturday, 16 June 2007

BRUSSELS – NATO member states are ready to support Ukraine’s aspiration

to integrate into European organisations, but it is up to the Ukrainian people
to take a final decision on the issue, Interfax quoted the alliance’s
Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer as saying in Brussels on June 14,
following a session of the Ukraine-NATO Commission.

The Ukrainian authorities’ task and responsibility is to persuade the
population that NATO primarily means democratic values, while NATO as

“a military machine is a secondary” function, Ukrainian Defence Minister
Anatoly Hrytsenko said.

The US will welcome Ukraine in NATO when the country wants to join and when
it is prepared for this, US Ambassador to Ukraine William Taylor said at an
international forum that discussed Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic future in Kiev on
June 13.

The door to NATO is open for Ukraine, but it is only Ukraine and its people
who can decide on joining the alliance, he said. Ukraine should initiate
comprehensive debate on joining NATO within the next several years, and the
people should receive all information about the organisation, he said.

Ukraine has made significant progress in its defence policy and in bringing
its armed forces closer to Euro-Atlantic standards in the past several
years, Taylor said. The country has also seen considerable economic growth,
he said.

At the same time, there are certain problems affecting security inside the
country, Taylor said. Other problems include confrontation between different
law enforcement and security agencies, the need to improve the investment
climate, and observance of the rule of law, he said.

Borys Tarasyuk, the leader of the Popular Rukh of Ukraine and former
Ukrainian foreign minister, has called on various political groups in the
country to refrain from gambling on Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic integration
during the election campaigns.

“NATO and Euro-Atlantic integration should not be a subject of election
manipulation and gambling,” Tarasyuk said at the forum in Kiev on June 13.

A decision on Ukraine’s NATO membership needs a consensus between political
elites inside the country, Tarasyuk said. “I urge those who voted completely
for Ukraine’s NATO membership at least to honour the laws they adopted
themselves,” he said.

Ukraine needs to adopt European and Euro-Atlantic standards in all political
and social areas, he said. Tarasyuk also called for avoiding populist
rhetoric in discussing Ukraine’s possible NATO membership and approaching
these issues pragmatically.

Joining NATO, Ukraine would defend itself from the “imperial ambitions of
certain states,” speed up political and economic reform, and turn into a
reliable energy supplier for Europe, Tarasyuk said. In addition, accession
to NATO would open a path to the European Union, he said.   -30-
————————————————————————————————-
LINK: http://www.neurope.eu/view_news.php?id=74997

————————————————————————————————-
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21.                                 THEIR UKRAINE

ANALYSIS: By Stefan Wagstyl and Roman Olearchyk,

Financial Times, London, United Kingdom, Friday, June 15 2007

Ukraine’s President Viktor Yushchenko seems to have recovered from the
lethargy that almost overwhelmed him after his triumph in the Orange
Revolution.

Perhaps the after-effects of his poisoning in 2004 are wearing off. Perhaps
he has summoned new reserves of energy. Perhaps he has been inspired by

the country’s turmoil.

Whatever the reason, Mr Yushchenko is back in action. The immediate result
has been a sharpening of his conflict with his Orange Revolution rival,
Viktor Yanukovich, the prime minister.

Last month, in Ukraine’s most serious political incident since the 2004
uprising, doors and windows were smashed when Mr Yanukovich’s

Both sides drew back from the brink and provisionally agreed to hold early
parliamentary elections in September, which the president hopes will clear
the air.

As he told the FT in a recent interview: “It’s very important to understand
that the political forces that then will come to the new parliament . . .
even if the [same parties] come back again . . . will be different. I think
they will attach more importance to political dialogue from now on.”

But there is considerable doubt in Kiev whether a reinvigorated president or
early elections can quickly resolve the country’s political problems, which
are rooted in Ukraine’s regional divides, its difficult post-communist
transformation and its proximity to its huge neighbour, the resurgent
Russia.

The current crisis dates back to 2005, when the pro-western Mr Yushchenko
failed to take full advantage of his Orange Revolution triumph or prevent
destructive rows between his supporters and those of his then ally, Yulia
Tymoshenko.

Under the compromise outcome to the Orange Revolution, the president was
obliged to transfer power to parliament in early 2006 and hold parliamentary
polls. To Mr Yushchenko’s shock, Mr Yanukovich bounced back to power

at the head of his Regions party and became prime minister.

Their co-habitation has been an unruly failure. At first, Mr Yushchenko gave
ground, hoping to secure an accommodation with Mr Yanukovich. But –
chargesMr Yushchenko – the Regions party concentrated on expanding its
parliamentary power principally by bribing other MPs to change sides.

In April, the president dissolved parliament and called early elections.
Accused of acting illegally, he has struggled to enforce his decision:
although Mr Yanukovich reluctantly agreed to the new elections, there is
resistance from his parliamentary allies and it is still not clear whether
the vote will take place, as planned, on September 30.

It is even less clear what will happen afterwards. Three big groupings will,
as now, dominate parliament – Mr Yushchenko’s Our Ukraine, Mr Yanukovich’s
Regions and Ms Tymoshenko’s bloc.

Mr Yushchenko and Mr Yanukovich broadly agree on business-oriented economic
policies, in contrast to Ms Tymoshenko, who has campaigned on a platform of
curbing oligarchs – despite questions about her own wealth.

On promoting democracy, Mr Yushchenko and Ms Tymoshenko stand much

closer. Mr Yanukovich, despite recent attempts at a makeover, still behaves like a
Soviet-era party boss.

Many analysts expect the post-election negotiations to last for weeks if not
months, raising questions about the government’s capacity to make decisions
over this time.

However, the risk of violence, which seemed a real possibility during the
events of last month, is now discounted, given the lack of public interest
in what is largely seen as a struggle within a faction-ridden political
elite.

The outcome of any coalition talks will depend as much on the distribution
of power and influence as on political principles.

Corruption will not go away. Business people favour a Yushchenko-Yanukovich
coalition or a Yushchenko-Yanukovich-Tymoshenko grand alliance. But whether
these rivals can co-operate more successfully than in the past is a moot
point. So is the question of how they will tackle Ukraine’s fundamental
political challenges.

The country is halfway along the road from Soviet totalitarianism to full
democracy. It remains divided between a pro-Yushchenko western region that
fears Russia and wants rapid integration with the European Union and Mr
Yanukovich’s base in the industrial east, which if not pro-Russian treats
the former imperial power with more deference.

Politics is dominated by business groups ready to bribe officials and
parliamentary deputies alike. Such groups are increasingly interested in the
access to global markets that comes through EU integration and support
recent moves to join the World Trade Organisation. But, for some Ukrainian
industrialists, Russia’s booming markets remain a priority.

The Orange Revolution supporters’ hopes that the events of 2004 would mark a
break with the past have been dashed. The public is thoroughly disenchanted
with politics. Fortunately, a strong economy is generating jobs and boosting
incomes, allowing Ukrainians to focus on economic rather than political
priorities.

Yet the gains of the Orange Revolution have not been lost. There is a free
press and there is real – if often corrupt and brutal – competition for
power. Unlike in Russia, where the Kremlin is tightening its authoritarian
controls, there is a democracy in the making in Ukraine. What it lacks are
democratic institutions, notably effective courts.

As Vadym Karasiov, a liberal political commentator, says: “Ukraine is going
in the right direction but taking the wrong steps. Russia is going in the
wrong direction but taking the right steps.”

Ukraine might go faster “in the right direction” if it were not for its
geopolitical position. Even in the 1990s, when Russia was weak, it was hard
for Kiev to break free of Moscow’s orbit. Today, with Russia increasingly
willing to reassert itself in the former Soviet Union, it remains difficult
despite most Ukrainians’ preference for joining the EU (even though that is
a remote possibility).

The Kremlin mishandled the 2004 presidential polls when it failed to secure
the election of Mr Yanukovich and block the rise of Mr Yushchenko.

But it continues to play politics, supporting pro-Russian parties and
non-government organisations, notably in Crimea, where ethnic Russians
predominate and where the Russian Black Sea fleet is based in the Ukrainian
port of Sevastopol.

Valentyn Nalyvaichenko, the acting head of Ukraine’s security services,
warns of the dangers of Russian interference, saying: “We are a young
country. For any country it is dangerous when domestic politics is being
interfered with by foreign sources.”

Russian President Vladimir Putin insists that he wants good relations with
Kiev but he rarely misses an opportunity to fire off an insult, recently
calling Ukraine “a tyranny”.

The Kremlin’s aim is to portray the Orange Revolution as a chaotic failure –
and reduce the appeal of western-style democracy in Russia and elsewhere in
the former Soviet Union.

For their part, Russian companies see investing in Ukraine as good
business – both in non-political sectors such as retail and in the intensely
politicised energy industry, where Russia’s dominance as a supplier can
generate political as well as commercial dividends.

The EU remains ambivalent about Ukraine. Poland and some east European
member states are pressing Brussels to engage more with Kiev and perhaps
offer eventual future membership. But so strong is enlargement fatigue in
the Union that this is off the agenda.

Mr Yushchenko, who hoped for more just after the Orange Revolution, now
accepts that the way forward is through developing economic links and
securing EU aid.

He knows the free trade agreement that Kiev can negotiate once WTO accession
is in place will drive Ukraine to implement about half the acquis – the EU’s
membership rules.

It was hard enough for Kiev to balance east and west when there was less
tension in relations between Russia and the US and EU.

Now, it is more difficult. As Oleh Rybachuk, Mr Yushchenko’s adviser, says:
“Unfortunately for Ukraine, every time there is a conflict between the west
and Russia we suffer.”                                  -30-

————————————————————————————————–
LINK: http://www.ft.com/cms/s/5530e68c-1adc-11dc-8bf0-000b5df10621.html
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AUR#852 Jun 11 London Stock Exchange; Pepsi Spends $542 Million; Mittal To Spend $1.5 Billion; How To Avoid A New Cold War; Russian ‘Danger’;

=========================================================
ACTION UKRAINE REPORT – AUR           
                 An International Newsletter, The Latest, Up-To-Date
                     In-Depth Ukrainian News, Analysis and Commentary

                      Ukrainian History, Culture, Arts, Business, Religion,
         Sports, Government, and Politics, in Ukraine and Around the World       

 
             HOW TO AVOID A NEW COLD WAR 
                     By Zbigniew Brzezinski, TIME magazine (Article 12)
                        
ACTION UKRAINE REPORT – AUR – Number 852
Mr. E. Morgan Williams, Publisher and Editor, SigmaBleyzer
KYIV, UKRAINE, MONDAY, JUNE 11, 2007 

               –——-  INDEX OF ARTICLES  ——–
            Clicking on the title of any article takes you directly to the article.               
   Return to the Index by clicking on Return to Index at the end of each article
1. UKRAINE IS COMING TO THE LONDON STOCK EXCHANGE (LSE)
            The Ferrexpo float will be the first full UK listing for a company
                                    from the former Soviet republic.

Jonathan Russell and Iain Dey, Sunday Telegraph
London, United Kingdom, Sunday, June 10, 2007

2.    PEPSIAMERICAS & PEPSICO TO JOINTLY ACQUIRE LEADING
                        JUICE COMPANY SANDORA IN UKRAINE
WebWire, Saturday, June 9, 2007

3.      ARCELOR MITTAL TO INVEST $1.5 BILLION IN UKRAINIAN
                             STEEL MILL IN NEXT FOUR YEARS
Interfax Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine, Sunday, Jun 10, 2007

4. FRENCH FIRMS AXA AND BNP PARIBAS AGREE TO PARTNERSHIP

      IN UKRAINE PROPERTY AND CASUALTY INSURANCE MARKET
By Julia Chan, Banking Business Review
London, United Kingdom, Friday, 8th June 2007

5. 40 UKRAINIAN COMPANIES SHORTLISTED TO BECOME MEMBERS
           OF WEF COMMUNITY OF GLOBAL GROWTH COMPANIES
Ukrainian Times, Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, June 11, 2007

6.   MAJOR GROWTH FOR VOLVO TRUCK DELIVERIES IN UKRAINE
                   Opens large service facilities for Volvo trucks in Odessa
Business-Traveler.EU, Dusseldorf, Germany, Friday, May 25, 2007

7MICROSOFT PUTS ON SALE UKRAINIAN-LANGUAGE WINDOWS
                               VISTA AND OFFICE SYSTEM 2007
Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, May 22, 2007

8.            MCDONALD’S UKRAINE TO INCREASE NUMBER OF

                    RESTAURANTS FROM 57 TO 100 BY  2012-2014 
Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Thursday, May 24, 2007

9.       UKRAINE PHARMACEUTICALS & HEALTHCARE REPORT 
               Provides Independent Forecasts and Competitive Intelligence

                      on Ukraine’s Pharmaceuticals & Healthcare Industry
Business Wire, Dublin, Ireland, Friday, June 1, 2007

        DIGITAL  BROADCASTING FOR ITS SUBSCRIBERS IN THREE
                                KYIV DISTRICTS BY SEPTEMBER
Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Saturday, June 2, 2007

11.         IFC HELPS IDENTIFY OPPORTUNITIES FOR GROWTH
                             IN UKRAINE’S LEASING INDUSTRY
International Finance Corporation (IFC), Kyiv, Ukraine, Fri, June 8, 2007

12.                        HOW TO AVOID A NEW COLD WAR
ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: By Zbigniew Brzezinski
TIME magazine, New York, NY, Thursday, Jun. 07, 2007

13.                        UKRAINE’S UNFULFILLED PROMISE
EDITORIAL: Toledo Blade, Toledo, Ohio, Sunday, June 10, 2007

14.                   UKRAINE HITS OUT AT RUSSIAN ‘DANGER’
By Stefan Wagstyl and Roman Olearchyk
Financial Times, London, UK, Sunday, June 10 2007

15.                UKRAINE: HUMMING, STEAMING HONEYCOMB
                        Economist’s Moscow correspondent tours Ukraine
Correspondent’s Dairy: From Economist.com
London, United Kingdom Friday, Jun 8th 2007

16.           UKRAINE: FROM AUTHORITARIANISM TO REPUBLIC
ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: by Mykola Rubanets, for UP
Original article in Ukrainian, translated by Anna Platonenko
Ukrayinska Pravda (UP), Kyiv, Ukraine,  Saturday, June 9, 2007

17UKRAINE: YUSHCHENKO MADE MORE ROOM FOR MANEUVER.
                                    TWO POSSIBLE SCENARIOS
ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: by Viktor Chyvokunya, UP
Original article in Ukrainian, Translated by Eugene Ivantsov
Ukrayinska Pravda, Kyiv, Ukraine, Saturday, June 9, 2007

18. UKRAINE’S EURO-ATLANTIC FUTURE: INTERNATIONAL FORUM I
                     Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday-Wednesday June 11-13, 2007
News Release: Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic Future
New York, New York, Kyiv, Ukraine, June 2007

19CONTAMINATED ZONE NEAR CHERNOBYL NUCLEAR PLANT
                                      INTRIGUING BIOLOGISTS 

The Associated Press, Parishev, Ukraine, Friday, June 8, 2007

20      PHOTOGRAPHER CAPTURES CHERNOBYL SINCE 1993
Thomas Keating, East Valley Tribune, Phoenix, Arizona, Sat, June 9, 2007

 
Frank Scheck, Reuters/Hollywood Reporter, New York, NY, Fri, Jun 8, 2007 
 
22.                                     SCHOOL OF HATRED
                                    Galaciaphobia: Myths and Facts
By Oleh BAHAM, Expert at the Mohyla School of Journalism
The Day Weekly Digest, Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, June 5, 2007
========================================================
1
UKRAINE IS COMING TO THE LONDON STOCK EXCHANGE (LSE)
            The Ferrexpo float will be the first full UK listing for a company
                                    from the former Soviet republic.

Jonathan Russell and Iain Dey, Sunday Telegraph
London, United Kingdom, Sunday, June 10, 2007

Ferrexpo, a Ukrainian iron ore giant, will this week brave volatile markets
to press ahead with its £1bn-plus flotation on London’s main market. The
float will be the first full UK listing for a company from the former Soviet
republic.

Konstantin Zhevago, the Ukrainian oligarch who owns the company, plans to
raise $500m (£254m) by selling a quarter of his holding. Ferrexpo controls
the world’s fourth-largest iron ore reserves and the biggest deposits in
Europe at its Poltava mine.

JPMorgan Cazenove, the company’s sponsor, has set a price range valuing
Ferrexpo at between $1.4bn and $1.8bn. It will be fixed this Friday and
trading in the shares should start on Monday. “People are interested but
they will try and get it as cheaply as possible,” said one potential
investor.

Shares in world markets tumbled last week on the back of concerns of rising
interest rates. The FTSE100 closed the week 2.6 per cent lower while the
FTSE250 of mid-market stocks experienced its worst week of trading since
May 2002, tumbling by 5 per cent over the five days.

Despite the sharp falls, leading strategists said they remained bullish
about the general state of the economy.

Bernd Meyer, the head of pan-European equity strategy at Deutsche Bank,
said: “We have to differentiate between short term and long term. Our view
of the economy is quite bullish. The current cycle cannot be compared with
anything we have seen in the past 20 years.

“It should be compared with the 1950s and early 1960s when the rebuilding of
the infrastructure in Germany mirrored the current growth in infrastructure
in China. Germany kept its currency low by buying gold just as China is
buying Treasury Bonds now.

“The growth in the 1950s only ended when there was no unemployment in
Germany. In China the World Bank expects the rate of urbanisation to keep
wage inflation under control. The IMF expects global growth to continue at 5
per cent for the next three years. Although there are risks we think it will
be at least five years before inflation becomes an issue.”

Binit Patel, a Goldman Sachs economist, said: “The markets are readjusting
to a new level of yields. Markets have to adjust when interest rates go up.

The big event will be the publication of consumer price index numbers in the
US. It will be a big focus for bond and equity markets. If the news is
fairly benign a lot of tension will come out of the markets. We need to see
pressure coming off interest rates.”

Other companies are also planning to float in the coming weeks. Cardsave, a
supplier of credit card terminals to small retailers, is poised for an £80m
listing on Aim. Fox-Pitt Kelton is expected to begin marketing the company
to investors later this week.

It is looking to raise £40m-£50m of new money, to allow a partial exit for
its private equity backers, RJD Partners. It is understood that the company
believes the turmoil in the markets will not derail the plans, with a
listing planned for the middle of July.

Jim Ormonde, the Cardsave chief executive and a former BBC journalist, is
also trimming his holding, landing a multi-million pound windfall.

In Europe, Shurgard, a storage company, is preparing to float on Euronext
for Euro600m (£408m). The company owns 167 units in seven European

countries, including the UK. Morgan Stanley, Merrill Lynch and Credit
Suisse started marketing on Friday.

Others remain cautious. “Although markets are at an all-time high they are
choppy, and the sentiment for floats is really not there. Large ones are
either being repriced or pulled,” said one senior banker.           -30-
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http://www.telegraph.co.uk/money/main.jhtml?xml=/money/2007/06/10/cnukraine110.xml
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2.     PEPSIAMERICAS & PEPSICO TO JOINTLY ACQUIRE
         LEADING JUICE COMPANY SANDORA IN UKRAINE

WebWire, Saturday, June 9, 2007

PepsiAmericas, Inc. (NYSE: PAS) and PepsiCo (NYSE: PEP) today
announced that they have reached an agreement to jointly acquire 80
percent of Sandora, LLC (“Sandora”), the leading juice company in Ukraine.

 The acquisition, for a total purchase price of $542 million plus assumed
debt, provides PepsiAmericas and PepsiCo a strong platform for growth in
the emerging Ukrainian market.

Ukraine is one of the fastest growing beverage markets in Europe with more
than 46 million consumers. Sandora has established itself as the leader in
the high growth juice category with a range of distinctly positioned brands
that represent approximately half of the total juice volume consumed in
Ukraine.

With over 3,500 employees, Sandora has a powerful sales and distribution
organization and two modern production facilities located in Nikolaev.

“We’re excited to extend our strong partnership with PepsiCo to create a new
model for beverage growth in Ukraine,” said Robert C. Pohlad, Chairman and
Chief Executive Officer of PepsiAmericas. “We have a clear strategy to grow
through the expansion of our international business and Sandora is a great
fit.

It provides immediate scale in a high growth market and a strong business
platform to leverage and expand into other categories. Ukraine’s emerging
economy and beverage market, coupled with Sandora’s strong brands and
distribution capabilities, provide significant growth potential.”

“Our expansion into Ukraine adds another important contiguous market to
our international portfolio, following Romania last year,” said Kenneth E.
Keiser, President and Chief Operating Officer of PepsiAmericas. “This
acquisition will allow us to further leverage our capabilities,
infrastructure and go-to-market system.”

“Sandora’s market-leading brands will be a wonderful addition to our
portfolio,” said Michael White, vice chairman of PepsiCo and chief executive
officer of PepsiCo International. “We look forward to working in partnership
with the Sandora team and to continuing to serve consumers throughout
Ukraine.”

PepsiAmericas and PepsiCo will acquire 80 percent of Sandora through a
new joint venture in which PepsiAmericas will hold a 60 percent interest.

Leveraging the capabilities and experience of the Sandora team,
PepsiAmericas will manage the day-to-day operations of the business, while
PepsiCo will oversee the brand development. The joint venture expects to
acquire the remaining 20 percent interest in Sandora in November 2007.

The transaction, expected to close in the third quarter of 2007, is subject
to customary regulatory approvals. PepsiAmericas will consolidate the joint
venture into its financial results. PepsiCo will recognize the earnings of
the joint venture as equity income in PepsiCo International’s line of
business.

While PepsiAmericas expects the acquisition to be $0.02 to $0.03 dilutive in
2007, PepsiAmericas maintains its full year adjusted earnings per share
outlook of $1.35 to $1.40.

PepsiAmericas expects the transaction to be $0.01 accretive to earnings per
share in 2008. The transaction will have no impact on PepsiCo’s previously
announced earnings per share guidance for 2007.                -30

————————————————————————————————–
AUR FOOTNOTE: Speaking in an interview with Interfax-Ukraine Sandora
confirmed the deal, saying that detailed information would be announced
on June 11.
The man stockholders of Sandora Ltd. are citizens of Lithuania Igor Bezzub
and Raimondas Tumenas, each of whom have a 45% stake, and who in 1995
provided the starting capital to realize a business idea of Serhiy Sypko,
professor of the Mykolaiv shipbuilding plant. At present, Sypko is Sandora’s
director general. He owns a 10% stake in the company.
 
Sandora’s share on Ukraine’s juice market is estimated at 47%.   
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3.           ARCELOR MITTAL TO INVEST $1.5 BILLION IN
            UKRAINIAN STEEL MILL IN NEXT FOUR YEARS

Interfax Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine, Sunday, Jun 10, 2007

KRYVYI  RIH – The world’s largest steel firm Arcelor  Mittal  is to
invest $1.5 billion in the coming four years in the reconstruction  of
the Mittal  Steel Kryvyi Rih steel mill, the mill’s General Director
Narendra Chaudhary told reporters.

Loans  from  the  European  Bank for Reconstruction and Development
will account  for  a  relatively  small  share in overall investment, he
said.

Under  the  business  plan, $277 million will be put into the steel
mill’s retooling in 2007, he said.

Volodymyr  Sheremet,  the  steel  mill’s production chief, said the
shareholders  planned to build a sinter plant with an annual capacity
of 9 million tonnes.

“Building a sinter plant is tantamount to building an entire mill,”
Sheremet said. The sinter plant currently in operation will be shut
down after the new one is put into operation,” he added.

Mittal  Steel  Kryvyi  Rih,  formerly  Kryvorizhstal,  is Ukraine’s
largest  steel  enterprise  with  an  annual  capacity of over 6 million
tonnes of  rolled  stock,  about  7 million tonnes of steel and over 7.8
million tonnes of pig iron.                             -30-
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LINK: http://www.interfax.com/3/281435/news.aspx
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4. FRENCH FIRMS AXA AND BNP PARIBAS AGREE TO PARTNERSHIP
      IN UKRAINE PROPERTY AND CASUALTY INSURANCE MARKET

By Julia Chan, Banking Business Review
London, United Kingdom, Friday, 8th June 2007

LONDON – French insurance giant AXA and French banking group BNP

Paribas have reached an agreement to establish a partnership in the Ukrainian
property and casualty insurance market.

Under the terms of the agreement, AXA will acquire a 50% stake in BNP
Paribas’ insurance subsidiary Ukrainian Insurance Alliance (UIA). The 50%
shareholding will be purchased from BNP Paribas’ subsidiary UkrSibbank.

As a result, AXA will take the management control of the joint company,
which will benefit from an exclusive bancassurance distribution agreement
with UkrSibbank for an initial period of 10 years.

UIA is primarily engaged in selling individual motor and property insurance
through UkrSibbank’s 1,000 branches. In 2006, it more than doubled its
revenues compared to the previous year to $35 million.

This partnership will allow both companies to grow faster in the Ukrainian
property and casualty insurance market.

In addition, UIA will be well positioned to seize the growth prospects of
the Ukrainian market by combining the strength of UkrSibbank’s network
and AXA’s expertise in insurance product development, client service and
claims management.

The transaction is subject to regulatory approvals but is expected to close
by the end of 2007.                                -30-
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http://www.banking-business-review.com/article_news.asp?guid=2E999A7F-8277-41E9-A665-81CF2D30D6FC

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========================================================
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========================================================
5. 40 UKRAINIAN COMPANIES SHORTLISTED TO BECOME MEMBERS
          OF WEF COMMUNITY OF GLOBAL GROWTH COMPANIES

Ukrainian Times, Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, June 11, 2007

Geneva – Forty Ukrainian companies have been shortlisted to become members
of the World Economic Forum’s Community of Global Growth Companies.

A select group of Global Growth Companies such as KINTO, Infocom,

VABank, Ukrainian Cargo Couriers and others have been invited to a private
networking event organized in collaboration with the American Chamber of
Commerce in Ukraine on June 12.

The purpose of this meeting is to discuss the role of this new business
community and, particularly, how Ukrainian companies can benefit from it.

The Community of Global Growth Companies includes companies that: – are
established and expanding outside their traditional boundaries; – experience
growth rates exceeding 15% year-on-year; – have revenues typically between
$100 million and $2 billion; – are proven entrepreneurial companies in the
early stages of going global; – demonstrate strength in a particular niche.

On September 6-8, the World Economic Forum (WEF) will bring together in
Dalian, China, this new generation of companies that will fundamentally
change the global competitive landscape.

These are the Microsofts, Googles, Nestles and Siemens of tomorrow, the
companies, which are yet small compared with today’s multinationals, but
have the potential to join the global top-500 companies within the next
decade.

In this context, Peter Torreele, Managing Director of the World Economic
Forum, sees Ukraine as a country with huge potential for Global Growth
Companies: “Ukraine, being one of the largest countries in Europe, with
tremendous industrial and intellectual potential, will definitely advance
its position in the global markets in the nearest future.

I see Ukrainian Global Growth Companies as a locomotive for this process;
these companies will demand access to the global business community,
international networking and strategic insights on foreign markets. I hope
that our new initiative will be the optimal solution for them.”
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========================================================      
6.  MAJOR GROWTH FOR VOLVO TRUCK DELIVERIES IN UKRAINE
                  Opens large service facilities for Volvo trucks in Odessa

Business-Traveler.EU, Dusseldorf, Germany, Friday, May 25, 2007

In 2006 Volvo truck deliveries increased by 62 percent in the Ukranian
market compared to the previous year, putting Volvo in the lead among
importers of trucks in the Ukraine.

By opening large service facilities in Odessa, Volvo Trucks is taking
long-term steps to further increase its presence in the country.

“Due to the strong economic growth in the region and growing trade between
East and West the need for truck transport is increasing,” says Roger Alm,
director Region East at Volvo Trucks.

“We plan to develop our presence in the Ukraine and chose to locate our new
Truck Center in Odessa. We believe it will be an important business region
and serve as a hub for transportation between East and West.”

With the new Truck Center, Volvo Trucks is now in a position to offer its
customers in the Odessa region total transport solutions including workshop
and financial services, as well as sales of trucks and spare parts.

Volvo Trucks has operated in the Ukraine since 1996 and has one wholly-owned
Volvo Truck Center in Kiev as well as five workshops in its dealer network.
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http://www.business-traveler.eu/nachrichten/6921/Major-growth-for-Volvo-Trucks-in-the-Ukraine.html
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7.    MICROSOFT PUTS ON SALE UKRAINIAN-LANGUAGE

                WINDOWS VISTA AND OFFICE SYSTEM 2007 

Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, May 22, 2007

KYIV – Microsoft Corporation has introduced its Ukrainian-language Windows
Vista operating system and Office System 2007 software to the Ukrainian
market. Microsoft Ukraine director general Valerii Lanovenko announced this
at a press conference.

He said the process of localization of these products started almost two
years and a half ago, and there has been some difficulties in translation as
350 new terms are in use in the new products in all.

‘On the one hand, sometimes the notions simply do not exist in Ukrainian,
sometimes they do, but cannot be used in the IT industry in relation to IT
tasks.

Besides the need to choose the required term that suits some particular
function or situation best of all, the task, of course, was to retain the
original sense of the code itself and messages viewed by users,’ Lanovenko
said.

The Ukrainian and Russian version of the products are offered at the same
price and, as Microsoft Ukraine product marketing manager Yurii Pederii
said, at the moment the products are available in the network of the company
partners and will appear in retail sale within a month.

Lanovenko noted that Ukrainian-language products will be at first more
popular with the government agencies and education establishments.

During the process of product localization, the corporation has been in
cooperation with the Ukrainian government agencies in charge of terminology,
and representatives of the Ukrainian academic sector, which in the end
allowed for building a unified database of terms.

The working group that translated and adjusted Windows Vista Office System
2007 consisted of representatives of the Microsoft office in Ukraine and the
company head office, several contractors and government organizations.

Volodymyr Sharov, head of the Intel representative office, said Intel
products on the basis of Intel Core micro-architecture and Windows Vista
operating system were released nearly at the same time.

With the advent of the localized version of Windows Vista and Office System
2007, Ukrainian users can obtain up-to-date systems on the basis of Intel
Core 2 Duo processors which will fully change their idea of interface,
digital entertainment technologies and multi-task operation capacities.

Volodymyr Bolotnykov, marketing manager at IT Samsung Electronics Ukraine,
said that his corporation began the production of new line-up of notebooks
in line with recent market trends.

‘Besides the powerful Intel Core 2 Duo processor, notebooks have ATI Radeon
Xpress 1250 graphic cards of new generation and work properly under the
guidance of Windows Vista Premium operating system,’ Bolotnykov said.

As Ukrainian News earlier reported, Microsoft Corporation put on sale for
private clients in Ukraine its new Windows Vista operation system and Office
System 2007 software on January 30, and on general sale on January 31.
————————————————————————————————–

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========================================================
    NOTE: Send in a letter-to-the-editor today. Let us hear from you.
========================================================
8.    MCDONALD’S UKRAINE TO INCREASE NUMBER OF
             RESTAURANTS FROM 57 TO 100 BY 2012-2014 

Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Thursday, May 24, 2007

KYIV – McDonald’s Ukraine company intends to increase number of restaurants
from 57 to 100 by 2012-2014. McDonald’s Ukraine director general Ihor Delov
disclosed this to Ukrainian News. “In 5-7 years, we will increase the number
of restaurants to 100,” he said.

Delov marked that this year, it is planned to open four restaurants, and at
least five in 2008. He said that average cost of opening one McDonald’s
restaurant in Ukraine is about USD 1.5 million.

McDonald’s president for Eastern Europe Khamzat Khazbulatov said that
currently, the market share of the company is only 50%.

As Ukrainian News earlier reported, in 2007, McDonald’s Ukraine plans to
invest about UAH 38 million into development of its chain.

In 2006, McDonald’s Ukraine opened three restaurants in Kyiv, Lviv and
Dnipropetrovsk. Currently, McDonald’s Ukraine chain consists of 57
restaurants in 16 large cities. McDonald’s has worked in Ukraine since 1997
and is the world’s fast food leader.                       -30-

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FOOTNOTE: It seems to me 100 restaurants was the same goal that
was announced by McDonald’s in 1997 when they opened in Ukraine
and the goal to open 100 restaurants was, I think, in 10 years or less. 
If this is correct then McDonald’s is behind their original projections. 
I attended the opening of the first two McDonald’s in Kyiv in 1997. 
AUR EDITOR
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9. UKRAINE PHARMACEUTICALS & HEALTHCARE REPORT 
                Provides Independent Forecasts and Competitive Intelligence
                      on Ukraine’s Pharmaceuticals & Healthcare Industry
 
Business Wire, Dublin, Ireland, Friday, June 1, 2007

DUBLIN, Ireland – Research and Markets has announced the addition of
“Ukraine Pharmaceuticals & Healthcare Report Q4 2006” to their offering.

Ukraine’s pharmaceutical market continues to grow rapidly in value terms.
Estimates by Russian market research agency RMBC indicate that Ukraine’s
packaged pharmaceutical market grew 18% year-on-year (y-o-y) over the first
nine months of 2006. BMI predicts that the Ukrainian market will reach a
total retail value of US$1.94bn in 2006, growing to US$2.49bn by 2010.

The compound annual growth rate for the market is forecasted at 9.4% for the
period 2005 to 2010, making Ukraine one of the fastest growing markets in
Central and Eastern Europe.

Still, strong recent growth has failed to attract much direct investment in
the production sector as multinationals have preferred to invest in
production in the larger and comparatively more stable Russian market to the
east.

Despite impressive market growth, the year 2006 also served to justify the
hesitation of investors in the pharmaceutical and broader healthcare sector
in Ukraine. The country’s government was essentially paralysed from mid-2005
to mid-2006, with President Viktor Yushchenko unable to force through a
working government until August.

With a cabinet headed by Yushchenko’s former arch rival and Party of Regions
chief Viktor Yanukovich, the government seemed to creep back to life for
much of Q406, only to descend again into conflict in December.

The result of this instability has been reflected in the pharmaceutical
market, where a number of decrees have been promulgated and plans

announced only for deadlines to slip and implementation postponed.

One major example is a decree published by the previous caretaker government
at the beginning of 2006 that called for a ‘Plan of Development’ for the
domestic pharmaceuticals industry. There is little sign that this plan has been
implemented, and it is not even clear if it still exists as a roadmap.
         LARGE SCALE FOREIGN INVESTMENT ABSENT
Large scale foreign investment is still notable by its almost complete
absence, however, notwithstanding relatively small investments by companies
such as Bioton (Poland) in insulin maker Indar and a packaging plant built
by Gedeon Richter (Hungary).

Rather, strong market players are leading the consolidation process in the
domestic market with Darnitsa, Arterium and Borshchagovsky topping the
domestic sector.

Foreign players will likely stay on the sidelines, waiting to see if
Ukraine’s economy continues to defy the odds and grow steadily despite

the prospect of further large price hikes on gas imposed by Russia.

Ukraine’s mixed picture translates into a continued 10th place rating among
the 14 CEE major pharmaceutical markets featured in the Q406 Business
Environment Rankings.

Without some clear direction by government aimed at simplifying and
speeding procedures and dealing with corruption and counterfeiting, the
country will remain a secondary market in many ways.  Such robust action
by the government is, however, unlikely in the foreseeable future.

Companies Mentioned:
— Arterium; Gedeon Richter; Krka; Lek (Novartis/Sandoz)

————————————————————————————————–
LINK: http://www.researchandmarkets.com/reports/c58721.
Contact: Research and Markets, Laura Wood, Senior Manager
press@researchandmarkets.com; Fax: +353 1 4100 980
————————————————————————————————–
http://www.pharmalive.com/News/index.cfm?articleid=447384&categoryid=54
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10. KYIV’S LARGEST CABLE TV OPERATOR VOLIA TO INTRODUCE
        DIGITAL  BROADCASTING FOR ITS SUBSCRIBERS IN THREE
                                KYIV DISTRICTS BY SEPTEMBER

Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Saturday, June 2, 2007

KYIV – The Kyiv largest cable TV operator Volia company intends to

introduce digital broadcasting for its subscribers in Kyiv Obolonskyi,
Kharkivskyi and Troeschynskyi districts instead of analog broadcasting by
September. Volia company president Serhii Boiko disclosed this at a press
conference.

At the same time, the company plans to monthly transfer about 28,000
subscribers from analog broadcasting to digital one.

Boiko has also marked that the level of digital broadcasting penetration is
quite high in those districts.

“These three districts… may have 20% of all subscribers, who use analog

TV broadcasting, all other use digital one,” Boiko said.

As Ukrainian News earlier reported, Volia company provides analogue cable
television broadcasting services under the brand name Volia Cable, digital
television broadcasting services under the brand name Volia Premium TV, and
Internet access via cable networks under the Volia Broadband trademark.

Volia group of companies is owned by the Ukrainian Growth Fund (UGF),
which is managed by SigmaBleyzer international company.            -30-
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11. IFC HELPS IDENTIFY OPPORTUNITIES FOR GROWTH
                        IN UKRAINE’S LEASING INDUSTRY

International Finance Corporation (IFC), Kyiv, Ukraine, Fri, June 8, 2007

KYIV, Ukraine – IFC, the private sector arm of the World Bank Group,
today released the results of a survey on Ukraine’s leasing industry that
highlight growth in the sector and indicate expansion of the nation’s
financial markets.

The survey reveals that challenges remain, including the relatively high
cost of leasing, which prevents some businesses from accessing this option
to upgrade equipment or expand production.

This study is the third annual survey conducted by the IFC Ukraine Leasing
Development Project, with support from the Agency for International
Business and Cooperation, part of the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs.

The results, which assessed performance during the year 2005-2006, are
based on responses from 60 leasing companies.

Findings indicate that demand for leasing services as an alternative
financial instrument has grown significantly in Ukraine:  the total value of
the leasing portfolio expanded by more than 108 percent, while the number
of leasing companies in operation increased by 20 percent.

The leasing industry is stabilizing and supporting an increasing number of
jobs, long-term contracts are on the rise, and industry employment grew 50
percent during the period.

Several factors are contributing to this growth, such as increased interest
in leasing from foreign-owned banks entering the market, growing public
awareness, rapid development of Ukraine’s financial markets, and improved
access to credit.

While the potential for growth remains high, the survey finds that there are
still many obstacles. Issues to be addressed include changes in the tax code
to make leasing a more viable option for businesses, and the absence of
credit bureaus and a well-developed secondary asset market.

At a roundtable discussion to present the findings, Ernst Mehrengs, IFC
Project Manager, said, “Leasing is an effective mechanism for the
replacement of equipment, increasing sales volumes of equipment producers,
encouraging technological progress in the design of equipment, and creating
new employment opportunities.”

Mehrengs noted that the government’s recent effort to amend the national tax
code with incentives for leasing is an additional step in the right
direction. “If the draft of the amended tax code is approved, leasing will
become less expensive for the lessee, thus increasing overall demand for
leasing products and benefiting the overall economy,” he said.
                                            ABOUT IFC
IFC, the private sector arm of the World Bank Group, promotes open and
competitive markets in developing countries.  IFC supports sustainable
private sector companies and other partners in generating productive jobs
and delivering basic services, so that people have opportunities to escape
poverty and improve their lives.

Through FY06, IFC Financial Products has committed more than $56 billion
in funding for private sector investments and mobilized an additional $25
billion in syndications for 3,531 companies in 140 developing countries.

IFC Advisory Services and donor partners have provided more than $1 billion
in program support to build small enterprises, to accelerate private
participation in infrastructure, to improve the business enabling
environment, to increase access to finance, and to strengthen environmental
and social sustainability. For more information, please visit www.ifc.org.
    ABOUT THE DUTCH AGENCY FOR INTERNATIONAL
                         BUSINESS AND COOPERATION
The Agency for International Business and Cooperation is part of the Dutch
Ministry of Economic Affairs.  Its mission is to promote and encourage
international business and international cooperation.

As a government agency and a partner with businesses and public sector
organizations, its goal is to help public and private institutions achieve
success in their international operations.

A growing number of organizations, government institutions, and companies
have come to rely on the agency for information about foreign markets,
governments, and trade and industry. It develops products and services that
meet the needs of its customers and clients.

Information comes from its network of Dutch and international organizations,
which include international finance institutions, the European Commission,
embassies, chambers of commerce, local business support offices, trade
representative associations, and other trade and industry groups.  For more
information, please visit www.evd.nl.

In Moscow: Ilya Sverdlov; Tel +7495-411-7555; E-mail: isverdlov@ifc.org
In Kyiv: Andriy Gulay; Tel +380-44-490-6400; E-mail: agulay@ifc.org
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LINK: http://www.ifc.org/ifcext/media.nsf/content/SelectedPressRelease?OpenDocument&UNID=CB312EE83C8A88A3852572F300696E00
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12.          HOW TO AVOID A NEW COLD WAR

ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: By Zbigniew Brzezinski
TIME magazine, New York, NY, Thursday, Jun. 07, 2007

America’s relationship with Russia is on a downward slide. President
Vladimir Putin’s recent threat to retarget Russian missiles at some of
America’s European allies is just the latest flash point.

The elaborate charade of feigned friendship between Putin and President
George W. Bush, begun several years ago when Bush testified to the
alleged spiritual depth of his Russian counterpart’s soul, hasn’t helped.

The fact that similarly staged “friendships”–between F.D.R. and “Uncle
Joe” Stalin, Nixon and Brezhnev, Clinton and Yeltsin–ended in mutual
disappointment did not prevent Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice from
boasting not long ago that U.S.-Russian relations were now the best in
history.

Surely it would be preferable to achieve a genuine, sustainable improvement
before staging public theatrics designed to create the illusion that one has
taken place. It’s a lesson Bush should keep in mind in July, when Putin is
scheduled to visit the President in Kennebunkport, Maine.

There are many reasons for the chill but none greater than the regrettable
wars both nations have launched: Russia’s in Chechnya and the U.S.’s in
Iraq.

The wars have damaged prospects for what seemed attainable a decade and a
half ago: Russia and the U.S. genuinely engaged in collaboration based on
shared common values, spanning the old cold war dividing lines and thereby
enhancing global security and expanding the transatlantic community.

The war in Chechnya reversed the ambiguous trend toward democracy in
Russia.Mercilessly waged by Putin with extraordinary brutality, it not only
crushed a small nation long victimized by Russian and then Soviet
imperialism but also led to political repression and greater authoritarianism inside
Russia and fueled chauvinism among Russia’s people.

Putin exploited his success in stabilizing the chaotic post-Soviet society
by restoring central control over political life. The war in Chechnya became
his personal crusade, a testimonial to the restoration of Kremlin clout.

Since the beginning of that war, a new élite–the siloviki from the FSB (the
renamed KGB) and the subservient new economic oligarchs–has come to
dominate policymaking under Putin’s control.

This new élite embraces a strident nationalism as a substitute for communist
ideology while engaging in thinly veiled acts of violence against political
dissenters.

Putin almost sneeringly dismissed the murder of a leading Russian
journalist, Anna Politkovskaya, who exposed crimes against the Chechens.

Similarly, troubling British evidence of Russian involvement in the London
murder of an outspoken FSB defector produced little more than official
Russian ridicule. All the while, Russia’s mass media are facing ever growing
political restrictions.

It doubtless has not escaped the Kremlin’s attention that the West,
including the U.S., has remained largely silent. The Bush Administration
was indifferent to the slaughter in Chechnya, and after 9/11 it even tacitly
accepted Putin’s claim that in crushing the Chechens, he was serving as a
volunteer in Bush’s global “war on terror.”

The killing of journalist Politkovskaya and Putin’s dismissal of its import
similarly failed to temper the affectations of personal camaraderie between
the leaders in the White House and the Kremlin. For that matter, neither has
the general antidemocratic regression in Russia’s political life.

The apparent American indifference should not be attributed just to a moral
failure on the part of U.S. policymakers. Russia has gained impunity in part
because of the effects of America’s disastrous war in Iraq on U.S. foreign
policy.

Consider the fallout: Guantánamo has discredited America’s long-standing
international legitimacy; false claims of Iraqi WMD have destroyed U.S.
credibility; continuing chaos and violence in Iraq have diminished respect
for U.S. power.

America, as a result, has come to need Russia’s support on matters such as
North Korea and Iran to a far greater extent than it would if not for Iraq.

As a consequence, two dominant moods now motivate the Kremlin élite:
schadenfreude at the U.S.’s discomfort and a dangerous presumption that
Russia can do what it wishes, especially in its geopolitical backyard. The
first has led Moscow to take malicious slaps at America’s tarnished
superpower status, propelled by feel-good expectations of the U.S.’s further
slide.

One should not underestimate Russia’s resentment over the fall of the Soviet
Union (Putin has called it the greatest disaster of the 20th century) and
its hope that the U.S. will suffer the same fate.

Indeed, Kremlin strategists surely relish the thought of a U.S. deeply
bogged down not only in Iraq but also in a war with Iran, which would
trigger a dramatic spike in the price of oil, a commodity in plentiful
supply in Russia.

The second mood–that Russia has free rein to act as it pleases on the
international scene–is also ominous.

It has already tempted Moscow to intimidate newly independent Georgia;
reverse the gains of the Orange Revolution in Ukraine; wage aggressive
cyberwar against E.U. member Estonia after the Estonians dared to remove
from the center of their capital a monument celebrating Soviet domination of
their country; impose an oil embargo on Lithuania; monopolize international
access to the energy resources of Central Asia.

In all these cases, the U.S., consumed as it is by the war in Iraq, has been
rather passive. U.S. policy toward Russia has been more grandiloquent than
strategic.

Despite the tensions, the uneasy state of the relationship need not augur a
renewed cold war. The longer-term trends simply do not favor the more
nostalgic dreams of the Kremlin rulers. For all of Russia’s economic
recovery, its prospects are uncertain.

Russia’s population is dramatically shrinking, even as its Asian neighbors
are growing and expanding their military and economic might. The glamour
of Moscow and the glitter of St. Petersburg cannot obscure the fact that
much of Russia still lacks a basic modern infrastructure.

Oil-rich Russia (its leaders refer to it as an “energy superstate”) in some
ways is reminiscent of Nigeria, as corruption and money laundering fritter
away a great deal of the country’s wealth.

To an extent, Russia can use its vast profits to get its way. But buying
influence, even in Washington (where money goes a long way), cannot match
the clout the Soviet Union once enjoyed as the beacon of an ideology with
broad international appeal.

In these circumstances, the U.S. should pursue a calm, strategic (and
nontheatrical) policy toward Moscow that will help ensure that a future,
more sober Kremlin leadership recognizes that a Russia linked more closely
to the U.S. and the E.U. will be more prosperous, more democratic and
territorially more secure.

The U.S. should avoid careless irritants, like its clumsily surfaced
initiative to deploy its missile defenses next door to Russia. And it should
not dismiss out of hand Moscow’s views on, for example, negotiations with
Iran, lest Russia see its interests better served by a U.S.-Iran war.

But the U.S. should react firmly when Russia tries to bully its neighbors.
America should insist that Russia ratify the European Energy Charter to
dispel fears of energy blackmail.

The U.S. should continue to patiently draw Ukraine into the West so that
Russia will have to follow suit or risk becoming isolated between the
Euro-Atlantic community and a powerful China.

And, above all, the U.S. should terminate its war in Iraq, which is so
damaging to America’s ability to conduct an intelligent and comprehensive
foreign policy.                                          -30-
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NOTE: Zbigniew Brzezinski who served in the Carter Administration as

National Security Advisor, is author of “Second Chance: Three Presidents
and the Crisis of American Superpower”
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LINK: http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1630544,00.html
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13.   UKRAINE’S UNFULFILLED PROMISE

EDITORIAL: Toledo Blade, Toledo, Ohio, Sunday, June 10, 2007

AMONG Eastern Europe’s large countries, the most consistent under-
performer since the demise of the Soviet Union has been Ukraine, which
is bogged down once again in a major intra-government scrap that stands
in the way of economic or any other progress.

With a population of 47 million, Ukraine is not only big but it also
benefits from having a lot of friends around the world, not the least of
which is the United States. America is home to many Ukrainian-Americans
who support aid to the country in consolidating its independence and
building up its economy.

Nonetheless, for a variety of reasons, some of them hard to justify, Ukraine
has lagged behind other Eastern European countries in moving forward to
take advantage of the opportunities open to it, in terms of political
development and in improving its prospects to join the European Union,
generally considered a positive step in that part of the world.

Instead, nasty political blood-letting continues unabated between rival
elements in Ukraine. The most recent round involves familiar names,
President Viktor A. Yushchenko and Prime Minister Viktor F. Yanukovich,
opponents in the 2004 presidential elections which featured, among other
examples of viciousness, an apparent attempt to kill Mr. Yushchenko by
poisoning. The incident left the president disfigured and close to death for
a while.

A fundamental problem appears to be divisions among Ukrainians based
on regions and languages. Rather than see these as splits in national unity
that need to be resolved for the country to move forward, Ukrainians
continue to dwell on their differences.

It is in part this problem that also contributes to the extensive corruption
that pervades the government, a considerable barrier to foreign aid and
investment, as well as to efforts on the part of domestic business people
and financiers to do something with the country’s considerable economic
resources. These include industry, agriculture, and mineral wealth.

Ukrainians also generally have the bad habit of blaming their problems on
the Russians. There is undoubtedly some truth to this, but rather than
seeing such outside influence as an obstacle to overcome by facing Russia
from a position of national unity, Ukrainians seem to play into the
Russians’ hands with their own political scrapping and wrangling.

What’s needed are early elections, free of the viciousness that has
characterized past voting. These could come in September.

Otherwise, Ukraine is doomed to the same sort of hapless non-development
that has characterized its first 16 years of renewed independence – a sad
loss to its people, as well as to the rest of Europe and the world that
awaits fulfillment of Ukraine’s considerable promise.         -30-
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14.              UKRAINE HITS OUT AT RUSSIAN ‘DANGER’

By Stefan Wagstyl and Roman Olearchyk
Financial Times, London, UK, Sunday, June 10 2007

Russian political interference and the lack of transparency around energy
supplies coming mainly from Russia threaten Ukraine as it struggles with
serious political turmoil, the head of the security services in Kiev has
warned.

“We are a young country. For any country it is dangerous when domestic
politics is being interfered with by foreign sources,” said Valentyn
Nalyvaichenko, the acting chief of the SBU, the state security service, in
his first foreign media interview.

He also pointed to the dangers of corruption, weak institutions and a lack
of co-ordination in pursuing big criminal cases.

His remarks came as Ukraine is embroiled in a power struggle between
President Viktor Yushchenko and his rival, Viktor Yanukovich, the prime
minister, in which Moscow takes a keen interest.

A 41-year-old former diplomat and fluent English speaker, Mr Nalyvaichenko
said in the interview at the SBU’s imposing Kiev headquarters last week: “I
feel Ukraine’s independence and statehood should be protected from any
turmoil, domestic or external.”

The road to security lay in domestic reform and in improved co-operation
with foreign security services, including those of the US, EU states,
Israel, Russia and other neighbouring states, he argued.

While Mr Nalyvaichenko, who was picked for his post last year by the
president, was explicit about the danger of Russian interference in Ukraine,
he was careful to avoid pinning any blame on the Russian security services
or other state institution.

He singled out for comment recent anti-Nato demonstrations in Crimea, where
pro-Russian sentiments are strong and where the Russian Black Sea fleet is
based in the Ukrainian port of Sevastopol.

There was no “domestic reason for such negative and active anti-Nato”
protests, said Mr Nalyvaichenko, who, like Mr Yushchenko, is a firm believer
in closer co-operation with Nato.

“Dangerous” slogans were being used in Crimea and “false information” such
as claims that Nato troops would be stationed in Ukraine.

“This is absolutely against the national interest of Ukraine. Using some
so-called pro-Russian organisation in Crimea, politicians – mostly
domestic – are exploiting this issue to boost their popularity,” he said.

The SBU chief indicated he was aware of finance coming from outside Ukraine
and said misusing political financing laws was “a little bit dangerous”.

Those who broke the rules would be prosecuted, he said, citing the example
of Proryv, the Kremlin-backed Russian nationalist youth group which had had
its Sevastopol office closed by a court order.

Donetska Respublika, a separatist grouping in eastern Ukraine, where many
Russia-oriented Ukrainians live, had also been taken to court.

Mr Nalyvaichenko also gave the example of Konstantin Zatulin, the
nationalist Russian MP, who was banned from Ukraine after making
inflammatory speeches.

As for energy security, the SBU chief said the key was greater transparency.
He promised that Russia and Ukraine would this summer provide greater
clarity about the natural gas trade in which the controversial Rosukrenergo
company plays a vital role.

“Ukraine and Russia should make this situation more transparent. [We need to
show] what the real prices are and what the real financial sources are here,
the flowing of money, and risks of dirty money and money laundering. To

know the real situation, the real operators, the real deal, is key.”

The SBU chief complained about the lack of co-operation between state
agencies, saying this undermined the rule of law, and called for reform and
the creation of a new anti-corruption unit.                       -30-
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15.      UKRAINE: HUMMING, STEAMING HONEYCOMB
                    Economist’s Moscow correspondent tours Ukraine

Correspondent’s Dairy: From Economist.com
London, United Kingdom Friday, Jun 8th 2007

                                            MONDAY
ARRIVING in Kiev on a swelteringly hot day last week, I went walking in the
city centre. I found myself exchanging pleasantries with three burly
black-clad commandos, sporting guns and truncheons, sitting in a four-wheel
drive-and eating ice-cream.

Like everyone else on Independence Square they were enjoying the cool gusts
from the fountains. “It is too nice a day to talk about politics”, said one
of them, smiling broadly. “Let’s talk about women.”

I had hit upon a national holiday, when the favourite leisure activity among
a fair proportion of the residents of Kiev seems to consist of wandering
purposelessly along the city’s main shopping street, Khreshchatik.

Stalls on the pavement were doing brisk trade in the usual (for Ukraine)
tourist stuff: yellow and blue national flags, old Soviet red banners, and
T-shirts emblazoned with the portraits of two bitter political rivals-Yulia
Tymoshenko, a populist opposition maverick known for her fiery rhetoric
and plaited hair, and Viktor Yanukovich, the prime minister.

Here at least there was no difference between them: either shirt could be
had for 30 Hryvna (about $6).

One thing missing from the streets was any sign of the protracted political
crisis-a power-struggle between president and parliament-that brought me to
Kiev.

A few hundred meters from Independence Square the Ukrainian parliament was
into its second month of turmoil; President Viktor Yushchenko, having tried
to dissolve it in April, was reduced to issuing decrees that were being
ignored by his own government; even the ice-cream-eating commandos had
seemed on the brink of a violent clash with presidential guards just a few
days before, after the president sacked the prosecutor-general.

Towards the end of 2004 Independence Square was a theatre of the Orange
revolution that brought Mr Yushchenko to power, beating out Mr Yanukovich.

If the public mood has been a lot less troubled this time round, as the two
have clashed again, that argues for two related explanations: first,
Ukrainians have got at least temporarily bored with the whole circus of
politics; and, second, they can afford to get bored, because the economy is
steaming ahead.

There is plenty of food in the shops, new restaurants are springing up on
every corner-and if you don’t fancy shopping or eating, there are large
shady parks giving cover from heat and politics alike.

The conversations I have been having strongly suggest that few Ukrainians
are even trying to understand what is going on in their country any more.
And if they don’t understand, what hope have I?

One obvious thing I can do, coming in from Moscow, is to look for parallels
with Russia. I can think back, for example, to that sunny afternoon in
October 1993 when, after a long stand-off between President Boris Yeltsin
and his parliament, Yeltsin ordered tanks to fire empty shells at the
parliament building.

But the differences between this stand-off in Ukraine, and that stand-off in
Russia, have been far more striking than any similarities.

[1] First, nobody in Ukraine has seemed in the mood for violence. When
troops loyal to Mr Yushchenko drew close to Kiev recently they were stopped
by traffic police loyal to Mr Yanukovich. They got out of their buses and
proceeded on foot, unarmed.

[2] Second, the conflict in Russian reflected an ideological divide.
Die-hard nationalists and communists, ready to hang Boris Yeltsin’s team
from the first tree, confronted an elected pro-Western president hostile to
the Soviet legacy.

The conflict in Ukraine is a lot less straightforward-not least because it
lacks heroes. It is not a fight between communists and capitalists. It is
not even a fight between the Russian-speaking east and the
Polish-comprehending west of Ukraine.

To call Mr Yanukovich “pro-Russian” and Mr Yushchenko “pro-Western” is
no longer accurate: both are seeking closer ties with Europe, and neither
wants to be back in Russia.

The situation in Ukraine is something closer to a plain (if not simple)
power struggle over who will run the country, and how. When the Soviet Union
collapsed in 1991 Ukraine had next to no experience of managing its own
affairs.

Building a state was never going to be easy, and Ukraine made heavy weather
of it. It evolved a style of politics that was all inside baseball, with no
durable rules.

You might almost say that this crisis is to be welcomed, so long as it plays
itself out within the political class, and so long as it leads to agreement
on a few rules sufficient to stop something similar happening all over
again.
                                              TUESDAY
WHEN the call came from an assistant to President Viktor Yushchenko asking
me to be at his office for 3pm, I was genuinely and pleasantly surprised. A
head of state in the middle of a national crisis might reasonably claim to
have more important things to do than talk to journalists.

But if anything else at all was going on inside the building of the
presidential administration, the former headquarters of the Soviet-era
Communist Party in Ukraine, it was a well-kept secret. Everything was eerily
quiet.

The long corridors were empty. The high doors-designed by Soviet architects
to make visitors feel small-were shut. There was no buzz. Nobody was running
up and down with documents.

A colleague and I were ushered up to the president’s floor and into a small,
dimly-lit room with a round table in the middle. (Mr Yushchenko’s taste for
round tables, and for peace-making talks, is a subject of jokes in Kiev.)
With a delay of less than an hour, Mr Yushchenko turned up.

I had interviewed him once before, ten years ago in London when he was still
the head of Ukraine’s Central Bank. He was good-looking, professional,
gentle, smart-but you would not for a moment have called him power-hungry
or charismatic. He certainly did not strike me then as someone destined to
change the course of Ukrainian politics.

By now I imagined him changed into an adrenaline-driven politician thriving
on crisis, a younger Boris Yeltsin. And changed he was; but in another way.
The man who sat in front of me was worn-out and subdued.

His heavily made-up face was scarred still from the dioxin poisoning that
almost killed him a few weeks before the presidential election. He projected
a sense of isolation and loneliness. He seemed divorced from the bustle of
Kiev life and from the circus of parliamentary politics.

I wanted to get him to talk in very basic terms about the seemingly
perpetual political crisis in Ukraine, and how best to resolve it.

I asked him about the differences between his vision for the country and
that of Viktor Yanukovich, his arch-rival, the prime minister. But the
answers he offered were less about the deep political divisions in the
country, and more about legal and procedural issues in the parliament.

He said that Mr Yanukovich’s supporters had been using bribery and pressure
to make members of parliament switch sides: “Our current constitution
prohibits such switches, but they tried to make practice out of it.” The
result, he said, was a parliament with an illegitimate majority.

A fair argument-but precisely the kind of legal talk that has come to so
frustrate the more headstrong of Mr Yushchenko’s supporters, and it is easy
to see why.

As they tell it, they risked their lives taking to the streets in 2004 to
protest against a rigged election and a rotten regime. They expected their
man to take charge, cleanse the system, and punish the bad guys.

Instead the president meekly transferred much of his power to parliament,
honouring changes to the constitution negotiated by his predecessor, Leonid
Kuchma; he tolerated corruption and squabbling among his own allies; and he
watched Mr Yanukovich, the loser in the Orange revolution, engineer a
majority in the newly powerful parliament.

At best, all this was seen as weakness, at worst-as betrayal. “Democracy and
tolerance is all well and good, but how can you be so tolerant and
democratic when everyone else around you is cheating?”, as one frustrated
Yushchenko supporter asked me.

Stand back, and you can see Mr Yushchenko’s problem. The big winner in the
Orange revolution was meant to be the rule of law; Ukraine was to become a
normal, law-abiding country.

If the new president had begun his term by reversing constitutional changes
already under way, that would have sent all the wrong signals.

Instead Mr Yushchenko did the decent thing, and allowed the transfer of some
presidential powers to parliament. But in a political system stunted until
then by a domineering president, this was a recipe for confusion.

Lately Mr Yushchenko has been trying to claw some of his power back, and
that has been a recipe for confusion too.

Mr Yushchenko finds himself caught between his aspirations for Ukraine, and
the political resources with which he must work. And from the looks of him
lately, he is nowhere near reconciling the two.
                                           WEDNESDAY
THE politics in Kiev was all tactical manoeuvring, and I was getting lost in
its complications. To discover more about the two Viktors, Yushchenko and
Yanukovich, I decided to visit their respective constituencies-starting with
Donetsk, the industrial heart of Ukraine, where most people speak Russian
and support Mr Yanukovich.

“Don’t go out after dark,” a friend in Kiev warned me the night before. “It
is poor and rough,” confirmed a nice lady in the presidential
administration. Evidently, Donetsk inspired resentment and fear in
white-collar Kiev.

Walking past the prosecutor-general’s office in the capital, where
thuggish-looking men were gathered (probably for payment) in a show of
support for Mr Yanukovich, I could see why.

The first surprise of the journey was a happy one. The plane to Donetsk was
a smart, clean Boeing, not a Soviet museum-piece. My heart leapt for joy.
But this interlude of modernity soon came to a close.

As we approached Donetsk I could see from the window a painfully familiar
sight: long rows of faceless, grey apartment blocks, typical of any
Soviet-built city.

A walk around the centre of the city was a disorienting experience.
Everything screamed “Soviet Union”: the 1940s architecture, the Red Army
tank on a podium, the statue of  Lenin in front of the local government
building … I pinched myself and looked again. It was a statue to Taras
Shevchenko, a Ukrainian national hero. I needed a drink.

A few minutes later I was sipping cold beer in a shady café in a park, and
falling into conversation with a Donetsk businessman called Alexander. He
ran an insurance firm, he said.

Business was booming. Property prices had risen fivefold in five years.
“Don’t believe anything you hear about Donetsk”, he advised. “The standard
of living here is much higher than in Kiev.”

In his pinstriped summer suit and white shoes, Alexander certainly looked
nothing like the Yanukovich supporters I had glimpsed in Kiev. He was a
member of Donetsk’s thousand-strong Jewish community, he said.

“Yanukovich is not a nationalist”, he continued. “He is good for Jews. We
had never had any problems in Donetsk, not a single Jewish grave has been
desecrated.” It was an unexpected argument.

It turned out that Alexander knew Yanukovich personally and had even worked
with him. “He is a good manager, people like him,” he said. “But what about
his criminal record?”, I asked. “Does not that make him unfit to run the
country?”

Alexander leaned towards me. “Listen”, he said. “What kind of family did you
grow up in?” “A good one,” I readily admitted. “And Yanukovich did not. He
grew up in a really tough family and he had to fend for himself. Besides, he
has served his sentence.” I felt embarrassed.

I wandered back towards the building with the Shevchenko-Lenin statue in
front, where I had an appointment with the head of the local parliament. A
former factory manager, he looked every inch a Soviet red director.

But he did not sound like one. “People in Kiev and in the west of Ukraine
think we are all gangsters and communists”, he said. “So when they come to
visit, which is not often, they feel shocked.”

“Does Donetsk want closer ties with Russia, or with Europe?” I asked him.
His answer was disarmingly pragmatic. “If joining Europe will make us
richer-we are for it.

If being closer to Russia gives us benefits-we should not turn away from it.
The best would be closeness to both,” he said, mixing Russian and Ukranian
as he spoke.

I walked out of his office and down the main street, where I came upon a
firework display. It was the last day of school, and 17-year old graduates
wrapped in national yellow and blue colour ribbons were immersing themselves
in a fountain. “Do you feel closer to Russia or to Europe?” I asked one
dripping-wet student. “I feel close to Ukraine,” she replied.
                                             THURSDAY
FROM Donetsk my plan was to fly to Lviv, the spiritual heart of western
Ukraine, where speaking Russian is considered in bad taste. But to my
astonishment there was no direct air connection between the two far-flung
cities. Unless I fancied a train journey of more than 24 hours, I had to fly
via Kiev.

Back at the domestic terminal in Kiev, I asked for a ticket to Lviv. “We
don’t sell them here. You’ll have to buy it at the international terminal,”
I was told. “But is not Lviv part of Ukraine?” I asked. No answer. I dutifully
bought my ticket at the international terminal.

“Where do I check in?” I enquired. “You have to go to the domestic
 terminal,” came the answer. If nothing else, this mysterious arrangement
captured the ambivalent place of Lviv in Ukrainian history and
consciousness.

For most of its history Lviv (also commonly called Lvov in English) was not
a Ukrainian city, still less a Russian one. From the first partition of
Poland in 1772 until 1918 it was known as Lemberg, and was part of the
Austro-Hungarian empire.

A Baedeker of 1900 described it as “Lemberg, Polish Lwow, French Léopol,
the capital of Galicia with 135,000 inhabitants (one fourth Jews).” Today it
is a city of 750,000, and only few hundred Jews are left.

After the Red Army drove out the Nazis in 1944, Lviv was made part of Soviet
Ukraine. The local airport celebrates the Soviet period with its monumental
sculptures of workers, pilots and peasants pressed against symmetrical
columns. The centre of the city, however, bears almost no mark of Soviet
rule.

It is still a provincial, Mitteleuropean town, forgotten by time. You expect
to hear the distant strains of the Radetzky march reverberating through the
night. The local government building, previously the Communist Party
headquarters, has changed not at all since it accommodated the Habsburg
rulers of Galicia.

“Everything here is exactly as it was under Franz-Joseph,” says Petro
Oliynyk, the current occupant of the governor’s office and a staunch
supporter of President Yushchenko. “The same stoves, the same furniture-
the governor of Krakow has the same,” he says.

Like any conversation in western Ukraine, ours starts with history, both
personal and national. And rare is the personal history here not touched by
family recollections of famine and repression under Stalin.

Mr Oliynyk’s father was prosecuted for joining a liberation army, his mother
was sent to Siberia. “My father hid a local Rabbi in his house,” he says
with particular pride.

For people in Lviv, a mere 80km from the Polish border, the integration of
Ukraine into Europe is not an economic issue, as it might seem in Donetsk,
but an existential one.

The choice between Mr Yushchenko and Mr Yanukovich is seen as the choice
between a European way of life and a post-Soviet one. “We did not fight for
Yuschenko during the Orange revolution-we fought for our own dignity,” a
young businesswoman tells me.

Still carrying my luggage and with no roof for the night, I walk through the
cobbled streets of the old town past Baroque churches, small coffee-shops
and street cafés, to a hotel listed in the 1900 Baedeker: the Grand. It must
have been brand new when the guidebook was published. I ask for a room in
Russian, but the receptionist tells me the hotel is fully booked.

A half-hour later I come back speaking English and several rooms have
mysteriously become available. I get an airy one with parquet floor and high
ceilings, overlooking the old Galician town. It is hard to believe that Lviv
and Donetsk are parts of the same country.

Yet, both here and in Donetsk, people want Ukraine to be an independent
nation, and they don’t seem to have a problem with its diversity. To be
sure, they recognise the historical and cultural divergences, but they are
careful not to turn those differences into divisions.

As one Lviv businessman tells me: “Perhaps western and eastern Ukraine would
be two different countries. But we have Kiev in the middle, and for Kiev it
is one country.”
                                              FRIDAY
I TAKE my leave of Ukraine on this occasion with a long walk through
Kiev-which Mikhail Bulgakov, in “The White Guard”, called, simply, “the
 City”:

“Beautiful in the frost and mist-covered hills above the Dnieper, the life
of the City hummed and steamed like a many-layered honeycomb.

All night long the City shone, glittered and danced with light until
morning, when the lights went out and the City cloaked itself once more
in smoke and mist.”

I start from my hotel, in Podol, the lower part of the city, an old
neighbourhood of craftsmen, merchants and tradesmen that still hums and
steams like a honeycomb.

I walk past Contract Square towards Andreevsky Spusk, an old cobbled lane
that rises in twists and turns to the upper city.

On the left going up is a two-storey building, number 13, where a century
ago Bulgakov lived with his parents. Later he would make this the home of
the Turbin family in “”The White Guard””, changing the name of the street to
Aleskeevsky Spusk.

Amid civil war, in the “great and terrible year of 1918 from the birth of
Christ, the second from the Revolution”, the two brothers and their
red-haired sister would warm themselves by a hot stove, strum guitar strings
and slumber under an old lamp shade: “Never, never remove the lamp-shade!
The lamp-shade is sacred.”

Bulgakov was intoxicated with Kiev, its cabarets, opera, street cafés, trams
and “rows of electric globes suspended high from the elegant curlicues of
tall lamp-posts”. But he saw it least of all as a Ukrainian city and
resented fiercely any manifestation of Ukrainian nationalism, even national
identity. To be “the City” was enough.

Andreevsky Spusk leads up to an astonishing blue and white Baroque church
with golden domes that tower over the city.

Here, at the top of the hill, starts another Kiev-the thousand-year-old
capital of Kievan Rus, the greatest state of eastern Europe, which prospered
from the 10th to the 13th century, and gave birth to Russia, Ukraine, and
Belarus.

Its founders were the Varangians, or Vikings, the Scandinavians who also
conquered parts of England and France. They were invited into the lands of
Rus by feuding Slav tribes who wanted an external ruler to impose order and
law upon them.

The greatest monument to the civilisation of Kievan Rus is the splendid
Santa Sofia Cathedral, built in 1032 by Prince Yaroslav the Wise, the son of
Vladimir the Great, who had adopted Christianity from Byzantium.

It survived Mongol invasion in the mid-13th century, bombing in the second
world war, and even the Soviet habit of blowing up churches.

It has an 18th-century exterior: the original Byzantine brick walls have
been extended and covered in plaster. But inside, as Anna Reid writes in
“Borderland”, a book that any visitor should bring along,

“It breathes the splendid austerity of Byzantium. Etiolated saints, draped
in ochre and pink, march in shadowy fresco round the walls, above them a
massive Virgin hangs in vivid glass mosaic, alone on a deep gold ground.”

In Kiev, and especially in Santa Sofia, the currents of east and west
mingle. Yaroslav tried to tie his sophisticated kingdom to Europe by
marrying his daughters to the kings of Norway, Hungary and France-the last
of whom declared Kiev to be “more unified, happier, stronger and more
civilised than France herself.”

To the extent that there was such a thing as Europe in those days, Ukraine
was a big part of it-and it is unhappy to find itself on the margins of
Europe now.

Yaroslav wisely warned his children: “If ye dwell in envy and dissension,
quarrelling with one another, then ye will perish yourselves and bring to
ruin the land of your ancestors.” There is wisdom here for the politicians
of today, if only they would listen.                           -30-
————————————————————————————————-
LINK: http://www.economist.com/displaystory.cfm?story_id=9280683

————————————————————————————————-
[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
========================================================
16. UKRAINE: FROM AUTHORITARIANISM TO REPUBLIC

ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: by Mykola Rubanets, for UP
Original article in Ukrainian, translated by Anna Platonenko
Ukrayinska Pravda (UP), Kyiv, Ukraine,  Saturday, June 9, 2007

When talking about modern history of Ukrainian formation, one may certainly
quote Taras Shevchenko: it is “the poem of the free people”. Indeed, and in
just the same satirical and sarcastic manner. But isn’t that so?

For example, what did the first Ukrainian president, with all due respect
for him and his outstanding service to the country, leave us with? With the
sacramental words: “We have what we have”.

The second president, who promised us to take “the way towards radical
reforms”, over a period of 10 years did not succeed in answering his own
question: “So what are we actually building?”

The third president’s government, with the only exception of the short-term
post-Maidan euphoria, is now turning into a permanent crisis, which
threatens to utterly ruin the country.

The only thing left to do is to pray to God that we never again face the
“epoch of Ruin”, which our ancestors had gone through after Bohdan
Khmelnytsky.

What to do?

The first thing Ukrainians really need to do today is to stop crying,
grieving and complaining with or without reason.

By the will of God and owing to the favorable circumstances we have an
independent state. And there are no empires (at least on three of four
sides) willing to tear us to pieces again.

So here lies the answer to the question “what to do?”: to work hard and
build the country. But what kind of country?

                THE GRAVEST SHORTCOMING OF THE 
                             UKRAINIAN CONSTITUTION 
In general, it is the Fundamental Law of the country which is to provide the
answer to such a question. Reading over the Ukrainian Constitution, we find
an attempt to answer the question in Article 5: “Ukraine is a republic”. But
what republic?

However, the text of the article provides no answer to this vitally
important matter of principle. And this is the gravest shortcoming of the
Ukrainian Fundamental Law: there is no concept of Ukraine’s formation as a
republic.

And it is a pity to ascertain that the Ukrainian Constitution looks very
much like a student essay composed of different, often contrary, European
patterns. And that is why this Constitution is so distant from the Ukrainian
reality, being eclectic in its form and declarative in its content.

Thus, in order to change the reality and influence the development of the
country and the society, we need a Constitution completely different both in
its spirit and essence.

Today it is quite obvious that this document is first of all to provide a
clear-cut answer to the question where and which way Ukraine is actually
going.

But Ukraine has not yet gone through the period of transition from Soviet
socialism to typical Western, or European, capitalism. We are somewhere in
the middle of its first stage, which is called the period of primary
accumulation of capital.

That is why the country and its government together with all the law
enforcement agencies, figuratively speaking, cannot even hold back the packs
of ‘privatizers’ from unlawful actions, seizure and plunder of property
accumulated by the previous generations of the Ukrainian people.

Because all the executive power is exercised by the officials, many of which
will sell their own mother for a bribe. And almost every week we face
murders of entrepreneurs, corporate raiders etc.

Markets and spheres of influence are being constantly redistributed. A major
part of the economy, power and social life finds itself under the influence
of behind-the-scenes activities and agreements or even under the control of
criminals.

From this point of view one can clearly see why Ukraine is worlds apart from
the democracy as a system of power and social order, where the law and
certain norms of public order and moral values prevail.

We should therefore clearly understand that what we really need during this
period is a very strong power which would restrain and control. And it can
only be a state with a firm power structure, appropriate regulatory and
punitive agencies.

Towards the democracy or back to authoritarianism?

Taking all these circumstances into account, the author at the same time
does not share the opinion that Ukraine needs dictatorship or
authoritarianism. If we long to be a part of Europe again, we need, despite
all our misfortunes and difficult tasks, to form the democratic republic.

But this is where the most essential question arises: what republic?

It is generally known that a republic can be presidential, parliamentary or
their combination: either presidential-parliamentary or vice versa. These
forms appear as a result of a long evolutionary process, social revolutions
or sweeping socio-political reforms.

Ukraine faced neither of the three. All the hopes and expectations that
after Maidan the new ‘orange’ government would rapidly take us away from
Kuchma’s authoritarianism towards a democratic republic of European design,
have vanished into thin air.

By the way, in recent years there has been a great deal of talk, especially
after several discussions as to the implementation of the political reform,
about the search of a new form of democratic republic.

However, the so-called step-by-step and partial implementation of this
reform has only unbalanced and weakened the government and the country

as a whole. The visual proof of this is the present political crisis.
                      UKRAINE IS NOT A REPUBLIC YET
So what is the democratic republic that we should actually strive for? It is
a republican form of government that, in contrast to authoritarianism,
provides for a certain minimum of democracy.

And the latter is grounded on at least two principles: the electivity of
representative and executive power at all levels by the people, which in its
turn means the accountability and submission of government bodies to
appropriate communities.

It also implies drawing up the state budget on a ‘top down’ principle,
provided that this budget should also be controlled by the people at every
possible level.

And this is what the concept “republic” means.

In other words, it implies that both the local and central authorities are
elected and controlled by the citizens themselves, by their communities and,
finally, by the people, i.e. the political nation.

So what do we actually have in Ukraine?

In accordance with the Article 118 of the Constitution of Ukraine, “the
executive power in oblasts, districts, and in the Cities of Kyiv and
Sevastopol is exercised by local state administrations”.

Are these administrations or at least their heads elected by the Ukrainian
people? For this is exactly where the democratic process starts.

The answer is no. This very article further reads: “The composition of local
state administrations is formed by heads of local state administrations.
Heads of local state administrations are appointed to office and dismissed
from office by the President of Ukraine upon the submission of the Cabinet
of Ministers of Ukraine”.

We may therefore conclude that Article 118 of the Fundamental Law of Ukraine
completely runs counter to and eliminates paragraph 1 of Article 5 which
states that Ukraine is a republic.

So what political system do we have in Ukraine after all? All the systems,
in which the executive power is appointed from above, are authoritarian.
That is to say, it is the first reason why Ukraine should be referred to as
a country with the authoritarian government.

The same thing with the state budget: it is not drawn up and implemented on
a ‘top down’ principle, and is not controlled by the people of Ukraine. Only
the local state administrations of Kyiv and Sevastopol are entitled to take
charge of the local budgets.

Of course, somebody may object to this and say that there is a large number
of articles in the Constitution which read that “Ukraine is a sovereign and
independent, democratic, social, law-based state” (Article 1), that “in
Ukraine, local self-government is recognised and guaranteed” (Article 7)
etc.

Moreover, there is a whole chapter dedicated to local self-government –
Chapter XI (Articles 140-146). Yes, it does exist, but, as they say, only on
paper.

And what do we have? The answer to this question, after 16 years of
Ukrainian independence, is now quite obvious to us all: there is neither
democracy nor local self-government, nor republic as such in our country.
                                          WHAT NEXT?
The first answer to this question should be as follows: all the reforms in
Ukraine are to reach their logical completion, i.e. the establishment of
democratic republic.

In order to achieve this, it will not be enough to introduce several
amendments to the Fundamental Law. The Constitution should base itself
on a new concept, the main task and essence of which lie in the need for
replacement of the authoritarian form of government with a democratic,
republican one.

Thus we should first of all determine what republic we will actually have:
presidential (like in the US), parliamentary (Germany) or semi-presidential
(France).

Taking into account that for 15 years Ukraine has been developing as a
presidential-parliamentary republic and that the period of transition is not
yet over, it is too early and even too harmful for the country to break the
presidential power structure.

Thus after the local self-governments have been established, the
Presidential Administration should not be abolished but rather be vested
with governmental, supervisory and control functions.

All these issues can be settled and regulated by the Constitution if it
contains a detailed model of presidential-parliamentary republic.

And in order to emphasize and secure the democratic order of this republic,
in which all the authority throughout the regions belongs to the citizens
and their communities, and in the country – to the people, it would be quite
reasonable to reflect all this in the name of our country.

The author believes that the most appropriate alternative to this name would
be the one given by our predecessors, but, however, not yet implemented –
Ukrainian People’s Republic.

The project of such a republic would be the best way out of the current
crisis and would show us the means for further development of our country.

In conclusion, let us note that owing to the project of the modern Ukrainian
People’s Republic, which is to be the contents and essence of the new
Constitution of Ukraine, we will not only be able to cut the Gordian knot of
problems connected with the government, but also be able to create a new
conceptual basis for dealing with the outdated reforms, such as
administrative, territorial, budgetary, tax, local self-government reform,
the reform of the housing and communal services.

Only when these reforms are carried out as a whole will it then be possible
for Ukraine to develop as a civilized European state with high levels of
democracy and high standards of people’s welfare, worthy of the XXI century.
—————————————————————————————————
LINK: http://www2.pravda.com.ua/en/news/2007/6/9/8024.htm
————————————————————————————————–

[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
========================================================
17. UKRAINE: YUSHCHENKO MADE MORE ROOM FOR MANEUVER.
                                  TWO POSSIBLE SCENARIOS

ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: by Viktor Chyvokunya, UP
Original article in Ukrainian, Translated by Eugene Ivantsov
Ukrayinska Pravda, Kyiv, Ukraine, Saturday, June 9, 2007

Ukrainian politics acquired new traditions. For instance, Mr. Piskun with a
ridiculous redundancy is appointed and then discharged, the Central Election
Commission is dissolved and then formed again and President Yushchenko
issues and cancels his decrees to call an early election.

On Tuesday the president made a step which his opponents awaited with
sarcasm and his allies with a hope. Mr. Yushchenko issued the third decree
to call an early election. This time he set a new election date – September
30.

Presidential decree is based on the night negotiations with Mr. Yanukovych
and Mr. Moroz and resignation of over 150 MPs which made the Verkhovna
Rada invalid.

According to Ukrayinska Pravda sources, President Yushchenko attracted four
ex-judges of the Constitutional Court to working out of the document. Even
Vasyl Nimchenko who is representative of the government in the
Constitutional Court supported the document.

However, the Party of Regions was most probably ignorant of this fact.
Having learnt about the third decree, Mr. Yanukovych’s brothers-in-arms
stated they would collect signatures for a new appeal to the Constitutional
Court.

But this time Mr. Yanukovych’s team is in a more difficult situation.

Already on October 17, 2002, the Constitutional Court created pre-conditions
for the third presidential decree.

Back then, the Constitutional Court interpreted Article 82 of the
Constitution in the following way: The Verkhovna Rada is valid if two third
of its constitutional staff is elected.

The Constitutional Court stated that this provision is the condition for
validity of the Verkhovna Rada during the entire convocation period and
cannot be viewed as the reason for opening its first session.

In fact, the Constitutional Court gave the answer to the question that
bothered MPs from the Party of Regions on Monday.

Meanwhile, Oleksandr Moroz stated that until the CEC accepts resignation
of 151 MPs parliament will keep working.

This Moroz’s idea to engage the CEC contradicts the Constitution which
clearly states “that “powers of a people’s deputy are terminated when a
people’s deputy leaves the parliamentary faction.”

The Law on Election was written in such a way that the final decision had to
be adopted by party congresses.

Besides, Mr. Moroz’s another demand was conformation by the CEC that
there was no substitution for the lawmakers who had resigned.

Additional guarantees from the CEC shows Oleksandr Moroz’s interest.
Socialist leader knows what he is doing: having charged the CEC with this
matter, the speaker delays an early election.

None of the sides has majority in the CEC, thus, it will be impossible to
make any decision.
                                         SCENARIO 1
Imagine that 151 MP left their parliamentary factions which resulted in
termination of their powers of people’s deputies.

In this case the coalition will have a hard time. The same decision of the
Constitutional Court dated October 17, 2002 contains another fatal norm: “In
case the Verkhovna Rada staff is decreased to less than 300 MPs, powers of
the Verkhovna Rada must be terminated until the sufficient number of MPs is
elected.”

Thus, following the president’s logic, all sessions of parliament are
nothing but meeting of the hobby groups.

To become legitimate again, the Verkhovna Rada must count 300 MPs. That
means that those who stand below in the party list must take place of the
missing lawmakers.

But this is impossible because BYuT and Our Ukraine started cancellation of
their lists. Although the coalition states that these parties have not
finished this process yet because they were stopped by a legal action, it
does not matter anyway because bringing 151 new MPs to parliament is

decided exclusively by the CEC.

The CEC leadership has enough people loyal to the president to block such an
unfavorable course of events.

Also, Mr. Kinakh’s people will demand to bring their MPs to parliament with
will cause counter actions if Our Ukraine insists on cancellation of the
entire list.

In such a case, during legal procedures the CEC cannot adopt any decisions
on this matter.

Delays play into Mr. Yushchenko’s hands since without the CEC decision it
will be impossible to bring new MPs to parliament.

Without these MPs the coalition can keep gathering in the Verkhovna Rada
building but these meetings will be not considered plenary sessions, taking
into account decision of the Constitutional Court.

When 30 days pass Mr. Yushchenko will have the fourth reason to call an
early election – now the Verkhovna Rada cannot begin plenary sessions during
30 days of one session.

Thus, the circle closes up

It is interesting that Volodymyr Shapoval who is Mr. Yushchenko’s ally and
current head of the CEC is the chairman judge in the case that will declare
the Verkhovna Rada legitimate only if it counts 300 MPs.

If the coalition dares to dispute the third decree in the Constitutional
Court the blue-and-white will appear in uncertainty again.

The second attempt to pressure Mr. Yushchenko with the help of the
Constitutional Court failed. As the president cancelled his decree dated
April 26, one can dump the corresponding draft resolution worked out by the
Communist member of the Constitutional Court which declares this decree
illegitimate.

Hearings regarding Mr. Yushchenko’s new decree will start from the very
beginning. The Court will start with appointing the chairman judge. Even if
he will be loyal to the coalition the Constitutional Court still has a big
problem – one day it has quorum, the next day it has not.

For example, on Thursday there was no quorum because Acting Head of the
Court Valeriy Pshenychny was not at work due to personal reasons, and
Susanna Stanik was supposedly on vacation.

Election of the Constitutional Court chairman can become another apple of
discord. As known, this position became vacant after voluntary resignation
of Ivan Dombrovsky. According to some information, he may try to be renewed
in this office.

Due to Mr. Pshenychny’s absence Mr. Dombrovsky actually chairs the Court
again. As the oldest judge he become acting head of the court.
                                         SCENARIO 2
The opposition will be in a very difficult situation if they do not have 151
MPs who will be ready to resign and publicly announce their decision.

At first, the Orange stated they had 171 MPs. As of Friday, they received
confirmation from 97 BYuT MPs and 60 MPs from Our Ukraine which totals

157 lawmakers.

However, Party of Regions MP Vasyl Khara told Ukrayinska Pravda that Our
Ukraine member Yuriy Artemchenko and another four MPs recalled their
resignations.

During the day Ukrayinska Pravda tried to contact Yuriy Artemchenko but his
aid told he was on a sick leave and refused to talk over the phone.

Mr. Artemchenko’s refusal does not seem surprising, taking into account his
friendly relations with Russian businessman Konstantin Grigirishyn. The
latter wages a war against Ihor Kolomoisky who is Mr. Yushchenko’s favorite
now.

Mr. Artemchenko is also close to Petro Poroshenko who is in disgrace with
today’s top-management of Our Ukraine.

Besides, the coalition paid attention to the fact that MP Volodymyr
Stretovych refused to comply with Our Ukraine decision to recognize
parliament illegitimate.

On Monday he came to the coordinative council chaired by Oleksandr Moroz
which contradicted official position of the BYuT and Our Ukraine as they
believed the Verkhovna Rada had become illegitimate on Saturday.

Some sources claim that parts of statements are doubtful. Certain
resignations are signed not by MPs but by their aids.

Yulia Tymoshenko’s step proves that the statements are not OK. Ukrayinska
Pravda found out that it was not Yulia Tymoshenko personally who wrote her
resignation.

Many people consider this nuance inessential. However, these people must
have forgotten that in 2000 Mrs. Tymoshenko vacated her seat in parliament.
In 2001 BYuT leader was restored in a deputy status because her statement
was written by somebody else.

Mrs. Tymoshenko is too tactful to hastily submit such a document to the
Verkhovna Rada Secretariat.

All this suggest unfavorable forecast regarding an early election but.

Besides public actions there are hidden factors proving that an early
election is inevitable. Regional branches of the Socialist Party received
thousands leaflets with Yushchenko, Tymoshenko and Lutsenko and an
inscription: “Who poisoned Tsushko? Tsushko was poisoned because he
did not let tanks enter Kyiv.”

Even socialists have accepted the imminent beginning of an election
campaign.                                            -30-
————————————————————————————————
LINK: http://www2.pravda.com.ua/en/news/2007/6/9/8015.htm

————————————————————————————————
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========================================================
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18. UKRAINE’S EURO-ATLANTIC FUTURE: INTERNATIONAL FORUM I
                    Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday-Wednesday June 11-13, 2007

News Release: Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic Future
New York, New York, Kyiv, Ukraine, June 2007

NEW YORK – KYIV – Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic Future: International Forum I

will be held in Kyiv, at the Diplomatic Academy of Ukraine, on June 11-13 2007.

The three-day conference will bring together more than 80 government and
non-governmental representatives from among Ukraine’s neighbors and
partners, including the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany,
the Netherlands, Poland, Russia, the Slovak Republic, Turkey, United Kingdom
and United States.

The forum program consists of eight plenary sessions, eight focus sessions
and two roundtable discussions.

During the first roundtable, Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic future will be examined
from the “Olympian perspective” by renowned foreign policy experts from
Germany, Poland, Russia, Ukraine and the United States. The second
roundtable will ponder Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic future and “the Russian
question.”

During the eight focus sessions, featured speakers, all of diplomatic rank,
will talk about Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic future from the Baltic, Visegrad,
Black Sea, Nordic and Western European perspectives. A separate session

will focus on the energy dimension of Euro-Atlantic integration.

The first four plenary sessions will assess Ukraine’s progress toward
meeting Euro-Atlantic external political standards, internal political
standards, economic standards and security standards.

The remaining four plenary sessions will examine the possible effects of
Euro-Atlantic integration on Ukraine’s diplomacy, politics and society,
economy and security.

The forum’s sponsors include the Embassy of Ukraine to the United States,
American Foreign Policy Council, Center for US-Ukrainian Relations,
Democratic Initiatives Foundation, Diplomatic Academy of Ukraine, Konrad
Adenauer Stiftung, NATO Information Centre/Ukraine, Open World Program

at the Library of Congress, Polish-Ukrainian Cooperative Initiative, The
Atlantic Council of the United States and the US-Ukraine Foundation.

Press accreditation for the event is required due to limited seating. Please
pre-register by June 9, 2007, 1800 PM.

For further information and pre-registration, kindly contact one of the
following individuals:
[1] Stephen Bandera, Forum Media Coordinator, sbandera@gmail.com
[2] Walter Zaryckyj, Forum Program Coordinator, Tele: 1 212 473-0839,

Fax: 1 212 473-0839, e-mail: waz1@nyu.edu or cusur1014@gmail.com
[3] Ilko Kucheriv, Forum Executive Coordinator/UA, Tele: 380 44 234 8046,
Fax: 380 44 581 3317, e-mail: ilko@dif.org.ua
[4] Svyatoslav Pavlyuk, Forum Executive Coordinator/EU,
Tele: 380 44 235 84 10, Fax: 380 44 235 84 11, e-mail: pauci@pauci.kiev.ua
———————————————————————————————–
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========================================================
19. CONTAMINATED ZONE NEAR CHERNOBYL NUCLEAR
                            PLANT INTRIGUING BIOLOGISTS 
 
The Associated Press, Parishev, Ukraine, Friday, June 8, 2007

PARISHEV, Ukraine – Two decades after an explosion and fire at the

Chernobyl nuclear power plant sent clouds of radioactive particles drifting
over the fields near her home, Maria Urupa says the wilderness is encroaching.

Packs of wolves have eaten two of her dogs, the 73-year-old says, and wild
boar trample through her cornfield. And she says fox, rabbits and snakes
infest the meadows near her tumbledown cottage.

“I’ve seen a lot of wild animals here,” says Urupa, one of about 300 mostly
elderly residents who insist on living in Chernobyl’s contaminated
evacuation zone.

The return of wildlife to the region near the world’s worst nuclear power
accident is an apparent paradox that biologists are trying to measure and
understand.

Many assumed the 1986 meltdown of one reactor, and the release of hundreds
of tons of radioactive material, would turn much of the 1,100-square-mile
evacuated area around Chernobyl into a nuclear dead zone.

It certainly doesn’t look like one today.

Dense forests have reclaimed farm fields and apartment house courtyards.
Residents, visitors and some biologists report seeing wildlife – including
moose and lynx – rarely sighted in the rest of Europe. Birds even nest
inside the cracked concrete sarcophagus shielding the shattered remains of
the reactor.

Wildlife has returned despite radiation levels in much of the evacuated zone
that remain 10 to 100 times higher than background levels, according to a
2005 U.N. report – though they have fallen significantly since the accident,
due to radioactive decay.

Some researchers insist that by halting the destruction of habitat, the
Chernobyl disaster helped wildlife flourish. Others say animals may be
filtering into the zone, but they appear to suffer malformations and other
ills.

Both sides say more research is needed into the long-term health of a
variety of Chernobyl’s wildlife species, as governments around the world
consider switching from fossil fuel plants, blamed for helping drive global
climate change, to nuclear power.

Biologist Robert J. Baker of Texas Tech University was one of the first
Western scientists to report that Chernobyl had become a wildlife haven. He
says the mice and other rodents he has studied at Chernobyl since the early
1990s have shown remarkable tolerance for elevated radiation levels.

But Timothy Mousseau of the University of South Carolina, a biologist who
studies barn swallows at Chernobyl, says that while wild animals have
settled in the area, they have struggled to build new populations.

Far from thriving, he says, a high proportion of the birds he and his
colleagues have examined suffer from radiation-induced sickness and genetic
damage. Survival rates are dramatically lower for those living in the most
contaminated areas.

In explaining their starkly differing views, Baker and Mousseau criticize
each other’s studies as poorly designed.

But their disagreement also reflects a deeper split among biologists who
study the effects of exposure to radiation. Some, like Baker, think
organisms can cope with the destructive effects of radiation up to a point –
beyond which they begin to suffer irreparable damage. Others believe that
even low doses of radiation can trigger cancers and other illnesses.

In the Journal of Mammology in 1996, Baker and his colleagues reported that
the disaster had not reduced either the diversity or abundance of a dozen
species of rodents – including mice, shrews, rats and weasels – near the
Chernobyl plant.

“Our studies show that a dynamic ecosystem is present in even the most
radioactive habitats,” they wrote.

Baker’s group reported sighting red fox, gray wolf, moose, river otter, roe
deer, Russian wild boar and brown hare within a six-mile radius of the
plant – the most heavily contaminated area.

Genetic tests showed Chernobyl’s animals suffered some damage to their DNA,
Baker and his colleagues reported. But they said overall it didn’t seem to
hurt wildlife populations.

“The resulting environment created by the Chernobyl disaster is better for
animals,” Baker told the Associated Press in a phone interview.

Critics point out that Baker’s work has been funded by the U.S. Department
of Energy, which some view as pro-nuclear. Baker defended the government
connection, saying, “We have never been asked to come up with any specific
conclusions, just do honest work.” He also said his work has been
peer-reviewed.

Mousseau and his colleagues have painted a far more pessimistic picture.

In the journal Biology Letters in March, a group led by Anders Moller, from
Pierre and Marie Curie University in Paris, said that in a study of 7,700
birds examined since 1991 they found 11 rare or unknown abnormalities in a
population of Chernobyl’s barn swallows.

Roughly one-third of 248 Chernobyl nestlings studied were found to have
ill-formed beaks, albino feathers, bent tail feathers and other
malformations. Mousseau was a co-author of the report.

In other studies, Mousseau – whose work is funded by the National Science
Foundation and National Geographic Society – and his colleagues have found
increased genetic damage, reduced reproductive rates and what he calls
“dramatically” higher mortality rates for birds living near Chernobyl.

The work suggests, he said, that Chernobyl is a “sink” where animals migrate
but rapidly die off. Mousseau suspects that relatively low-level radiation
reduces the level of antioxidants in the blood, which can lead to cell
damage.

“From every rock we turn over, we find consequences,” he told the Associated
Press in a phone interview. “These reports of wildlife flourishing in the
area are completely anecdotal and have no scientific basis.”

While the experts debate, Maria Urupa, harvests tomatoes from her garden,
buys fish from the nearby Pripyat River and brews moonshine vodka.

Eating locally produced food is risky, health experts agree, because plants
and animals can concentrate radioactive materials as they cycle through the
food chain. Does she fear the effects of her exposure to radiation?

 
“Radiation? No!” she said. “What humans do? Yes.”          -30-
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[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
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20. PHOTOGRAPHER CAPTURES CHERNOBYL SINCE 1993

Thomas Keating, East Valley Tribune, Phoenix, Arizona, Sat, June 9, 2007

On April 26, 1986, the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant sent a plume of
radioactive fallout drifting over parts of the Soviet Union and Europe in
the most devastating accident in the history of nuclear power.

Large areas of what are now Ukraine, Belarus and Russia were badly polluted,
resulting in the evacuation and resettlement of hundreds of thousands of
people, as well as a bleak future for those contaminated.

Since 1993, Scottsdale photographer Kristina Brendel has been documenting
the devastation of abandoned towns and contaminated areas in the hope that
people won’t overlook what happened 21 years ago.

“People forget,” Brendel said. “There is a new tragedy every day, but the
old hurts remain. Chernobyl came up again last year, during the 20-year
anniversary, making a day or so blip on the news radar. My goal is to make
sure this is not completely forgotten.”

Achieving that goal has been a passion project for Brendel, who never sold
a photo until she arrived near the disaster site in 1992.

Brendel got her first photography job on the visit: She was enlisted to
document the work of a humanitarian group helping with disaster relief in
the Chernobyl area. Fascinated by the sheer desolation, she has traveled
back four times.

Each time, she has gone “into the Zone,” referring to the Zone of
Alienation, the 30-kilometer exclusion area around the site of the Chernobyl
nuclear reactor disaster.

Each time she has taken pictures, capturing the changes to the site over the
years in the hope it will one day get better.

“This project has been my project,” Brendel said. “I take other pictures, I
do other work, but this is the only one that has carried on. And it
continues because the problem is not solved. I don’t have any solutions,
but I am trying to raise awareness.”

Brendel said she has seen some heartbreaking things. Children’s shoes,
scattered and abandoned, representing all of the kids who may have to battle
cancer from the radiation they were exposed to.

Also, the farmers whose lives were torn apart as they were forced to move to
cities and start over. “It’s overwhelming,” Brendel said, “a total vacuum.”

She described the rows of houses that used to be the place where “everything
was supposed to be OK” for these people. “Now everything has fallen down,
a safe haven – gone,” she said.

One of the worries of outsiders entering the Zone is exposure to radiation.
Brendel said a person receives about as much radiation from one day there as
they would encountering an airport X-ray scanner.

“It’s only those who spend long periods of time near the heavy radiation
point who are the ones in danger of long-term effects,” she said.

In April, during the 21st anniversary of the Chernobyl accident, Brendel’s
exhibition of black-and-white photos from inside the Zone joined the
permanent collection of the Chernobyl Museum in Kiev, Ukraine.

Her work has already toured Belarus – the former Soviet state hit hardest by
the disaster – because it lay in the path of the wind in the week after the
reactor exploded.

Brendel was invited by the Belarusian Museum of Modern Art to exhibit her
collection as its featured artist during the 20th anniversary commemoration
of Chernobyl last April.

On top of this, a trilingual book featuring Brendel’s photo exhibition has
been published in Minsk, the capital of Belarus, where she has an apartment
on Karl Marx Street.

But Brendel is not satisfied with her recent success. In July, she will
return to the site, and yet again, go into the Zone. Knowing that children
are being exposed every day to radiation, Brendel has been inspired to keep
working.

When she opened her exhibit at the Chernobyl Museum in Kiev, a choir made up
entirely of people who had been evacuated from the contaminated areas sang
at the opening. “I heard that they were coming, but when I saw them, I was
surprised at how young they were,” she said.

Brendel said she hopes her work will have a lasting effect in helping to
solve the dilemma that the surrounding contaminated areas still face to this
day.

“It ruined the lives of hundreds of thousands of people, and they’re still
around,” she said. “Everyone has a chance to rebuild.”          -30-
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http://www.eastvalleytribune.com/story/91268?source=rss&dest=STY-91268
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21. “ORANGE” DRAINS COLOR FROM REAL-LIFE UKRAINE DRAMA

 
Frank Scheck, Reuters/Hollywood Reporter, New York, NY, Fri, Jun 8, 2007 
 
NEW YORK – Potentially fascinating subject matter receives awkward
treatment in Andrei Zagdansky’s documentary about the 2004 presidential
election in Ukraine and the so-called “Orange Revolution” that followed the
disputed results.

Despite such dramatic elements as the near-fatal poisoning of the one of the
candidates and a censored television broadcaster surreptitiously revealing
the truth via sign language for the deaf, “Orange Winter” is strangely
tedious. The film recently received its U.S. theatrical premiere at New
York’s Pioneer Theater.

Even American audiences nonversed in Ukrainian politics will no doubt recall
the poisoning of candidate Viktor Yushchenko with dioxin, resulting in his
severe facial scarring.

The pro-Western opponent of the government-supported Viktor Yanukovich

(the outgoing president, fearful of being brought up on corruption charges,
wanted a hand-picked successor), he was defeated in an election that was
universally seen as corrupt.

For the next two weeks, citizens took to the streets in mass demonstrations,
adopting the color orange as a show of support for the defeated candidate.
Their efforts resulted in a recount that got Yushchenko installed in office.

Unfortunately, the innate drama of the events is diluted here by the
filmmaker’s unimaginative approach and the droning narration.

Even running a scant 72 minutes, the film is unnecessarily padded, to less
than relevant effect, with extensive clips from the classic silent film
“Earth” and scenes from operas that were performed in the city during the
events in question.                                    -30-

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LINK: http://www.reuters.com/article/filmNews/idUSN0826582720070608
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22.                       SCHOOL OF HATRED
                                  Galaciaphobia: Myths and Facts

By Oleh BAHAM, an expert at the Mohyla School of Journalism
The Day Weekly Digest, Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, June 5, 2007

In the past few years, approximately since the time of the Ukraine without
Kuchma action of 2001, some Ukrainian and Russian mass media have
started waging another vigorous anti-Galician campaign.

The first campaign of this kind took place in 1989-94, when Galicia
(Halychyna) was the hub of the national renaissance and state-building
movement.

In both cases, this is an aggressive reaction of the Muscophile and “Little
Russian” segments of Ukrainian society. In both cases, it is a revival of
old Russian stereotypes and myths that portray Galicians and Galicia as
something totally alien to Ukraine, hostile, destructive,
“bourgeois-nationalistic,” etc.

In reality, both then and now Galicia is a status symbol of the entire
Ukrainian national movement that Moscow has always feared as something that
can thwart its imperial ambitions and claims. Demonizing Galicia has always
sought to present the Ukrainian movement as marginal, pathological, and
menacing.

There are two main factors behind today’s mounting anti-Galician campaign.

First, the Party of Regions is trying to reinforce its external propaganda
by reanimating old Soviet anti-Ukrainian myths and slogans, like “Down with
fascist henchmen” and “No to bourgeois nationalism,” although these two
slogans are complete nonsense from the standpoint of historical truth and
national logic.

Second, the past few years (since Vladimir Putin came to power in Russia)
have seen fierce geopolitical and strategic competition for Ukraine, in
which the national weakening of our state occupies by far the most crucial
place.

While the Party of Regions uses anti-Galician (read: anti-Ukrainian)
propaganda mostly for tactical purposes, trying to whip up emotions and
enlist the support of the Russian and Russified residents of Easternern and
southern Ukraine, whose mentality is still full of anti-Ukrainian
stereotypes, Moscow has embarked on an anti-Galician crusade with the
strategic goal to split Ukraine regionally and weaken it through internal
conflict.

Anti-Galician stereotypes in Ukraine have other, deeper, roots. First of
all, the nation spent a long time under the leveling pressure of the Russian
Empire, a well-run “melting pot” that generated a specific phenomenon
known as the “Ukrainian Little Russian mentality” (or “Creole mentality,”
according to Mykola Riabchuk).

Today, outright rejection of Galicia’s social traditions has formed within a
considerable part of Ukrainian society – the dominant part, which has a
powerful impact on the shaping of current government policies, cultural and
social values, and which remains under the protracted mental, ideological,
and cultural influence of Russia.

This is the reason why there are secret instructions against Galicians and
all things Galician, such as the hounding of Galician politicians, freezing
of economic and business contacts with the region, and tendentious
misinformation, while the central media, not to mention those in Eastern
and southern Ukraine, mostly report negative or, at best, neutral but never
positive, information about Galicia. This creates the overall impression of
an area described as being “almost totally depressed,” “backward,” and
“hopelessly provincial.”

On the one hand, this is an objective phenomenon because the difference
between Creole-type consciousness (post-imperial,
inferiority-complex-ridden) and Galician (nation-centered, civic) is too
great for such a hidden conflict not to exist. On the other hand, it carries
within it the clear threat of a split in the nation.

The press, academic publications, and television have featured so many
anti-Galician materials in the past few years that it would take a separate
monograph to review them. So I will try to analyze only the main, most
deeply rooted, and rabble-rousing stereotypes that distort Galicia’s image
and essence in Ukraine’s informational, political, and cultural space.

Since they are mostly rooted in the traditions of Russian great-power
imperialist ideology, they require historical and scholarly analysis. Let us
look at Galicia as a distinct phenomenon of culture and mentality.

 
The chief stereotypes in the negative assessment and perception of Galicia
are as follows:

1) In terms of civilization and mentality, Galicia is alien to and dangerous
to the Eastern Slavic (read: Russian) civilization and culture and,
therefore, Ukraine itself.

2) Galicia has always been part of the Church Union; it is too open to the
West and thus has a corrosive effect on the Eastern Slavic Orthodox
civilization.

3) Galicia and Galicians were excessively spoiled by Polish culture and thus
are utterly alien to the rest of Ukraine.

4) In the 19th century Galicia became an oasis, a “laboratory” of sorts, of
the modern Ukrainian nation, and it “infected” the rest of Ukraine with
nationalism, thus breaking the “sacred” unity of the Russian and Ukrainian
peoples.

5) In the last quarter of the 19th and the early 20th century Galicia
stemmed the Muscophile movement, the ideology and policy of the “true
champions of fraternal Slavic unity,” which dealt an irreparable blow to the
monolithic Eastern Slavic union.

6) Galician writers and cultural figures exerted a negative influence on the
new Ukrainian culture, “befouled” the Ukrainian language with foreign
Galician dialects and “incongruous” esthetic components.

7) During the interwar period and World War Two, Galicians formed the
OUN-UPA, a very “aggressive bourgeois nationalist movement” that
collaborated with the German occupiers, relentlessly fought against the
USSR, and thus won the dubious distinction of being “traitors” and
“fratricides.”

8) Having been affected with the above-mentioned “poisons” – Middle European
(Austro-Hungarian) and Polish spirit, the Church Union, nationalism, and a
categorical anti-Moscow stance – Galicia preserved its traditions and
identity even in the Soviet era; it did not bow to Moscow and was not
mentally Russified; instead, it strengthened, becoming a kind “Carpathian
Croatia,” an eternal bulwark and enemy of the Orthodox Eastern Slavic world
(even though the latter took the form of an atheistic and communist USSR).

Let us now elucidate the causes and ideological foundations of the
anti-Galician stereotypes in the same sequence:

1. True, in terms of mentality and civilization, Galicia posed a threat to
the “Eastern Slavic civilization,” but only in the sense that this kind of
civilization does not exist.

The fake vision of this civilization emerged in the imperial ideology of the
19th-century Russian Slavophiles (Ivan Kireevsky, Aleksei Khomiakov,
Konstantin Aksakov, Nikolai Danilevsky, et al) who tried to substantiate the
right of Russia to own Middle Europe (from Poland to the Balkans) and
developed the idea of “Moscow as the Third Rome” with its claims to being
“the only center of Orthodoxy” and the right to fight for Constantinople
(Istanbul), i.e., the right to pursue an aggressive foreign policy.

That this required the complete assimilation of the empire’s two other great
Slavic peoples – the Ukrainians and Belarusians – was a foregone conclusion.

This is why the imperial doctrine did not show any greater contempt and
disgust for anybody but these two – allegedly “fraternal” – peoples, for
they “disturbed” the empire’s internal unity. In reality, the “Eastern
Slavic civilization,” i.e., Kyivan Rus’, a superpower that was united for a
short time by the Varangians (the Normans, who established several states in
Europe through conquest), disintegrated in the 12th century, when three
large geopolitical centers – the Polotsk Principality, the Novhorod Land,
and the Volodymyr-Suzdal Principality – seceded, one by one, from the
central Kyivan Principality.

This was a natural fact in all the three main dimensions – geopolitical,
national, and mental/civilizational. The Baltic geopolitical circle “drew
away” Polotsk and Novhorod. The Great Eastern European Plain became
the cradle of the future Muscovite Principality, while the Black Sea coastal
area shaped the future space of Ukraine.

In ethnological terms, the Belarusians (Polochans and Dregoviches) were a
symbiosis of Baltic and Slavic ethnoses, the Novhorod people were a mixture
of Balts, Veneds, Slovens, and proto-Finns, the Muscovites were a union of
Slavs and various Finno- Ugric peoples, and the Ukrainians were a symbiosis
of Slavs and Sarmatian Scythians.

In the dimension of mentality and civilization, Polotsk and Novhorod
experienced a strong cultural influence of the Baltic macroregion and
Scandinavia; Muscovy – Turkic nomads; and Ukraine – the Mediterranean
(Byzantine Empire) and Central Europe (the Balkans, Hungary, and Poland).

The differences between Muscovy, Ukraine, and Belarus became especially
evident in the 14th-17th centuries, when the latter two were part of the
Grand Duchy of Lithuania and the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth.

It was the time when Ukraine and Belarus experienced the powerful influence
of Catholicism, the ideas of the Renaissance, and Baroque culture. The
nobility formed its own ethics, a specific moral code based on the Western
aristocratic and knightly spirit.

Urban culture was on the rise: cities were granted the Magdeburg Law.
Muscovy could not endure this. Although the closeness of the three Eastern
Slavic languages was preserved, this was due to the great role of the Old
Church Slavonic spiritual, cultural, and written-language tradition rather
than to some mystic affinity among these peoples.

Closeness of languages that have a great cultural tradition is a typical
phenomenon in world history. For example, the Romance languages (Italian,
Spanish, Portuguese, French, and Romanian) are very closely related, and
Arabic is a common language for very different peoples from Morocco to
the Persian Gulf, and so on.

The problem of both Belarus and Ukraine was that, after they were annexed
by Russia in the 18th century, Moscow relentlessly destroyed all these
socio-cultural and spiritual traditions and forcibly imposed the Russian
language and culture on them.

In this space, Galicia (along with Transcarpathia and Bukovyna) remained the
only island free of coercive Russian “influences,” above all, because it
became part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire in 1772. This is why its
civilizational and psychological difference from the rest of the gigantic
Russified space is so pronounced.

But this natural distinction fully corresponds with the social structure,
culture, and spirituality of Central Europe – the world between the Baltics
and the Balkans, between the Alps and the Black Sea. The roots of this world
are hidden in the depths of people’s hearts, so all kinds of differences in
Belarusians and Ukrainians continued to emerge whenever Russian pressure
eased.

2. The second myth concerns the “accursed” Church Union of Galicia. Indeed,
the assessment of and attitude to the Union have a mystical, superstitious,
and fanatical nature in Russia. The reason is that Moscow embraced too
sincerely and blindly the teachings of Greek fugitives about its exclusive
“mission” in saving the Orthodox world from the “Latinizers” and “infidels.”

This geopolitical role dovetailed perfectly with the idea of the “Third
Rome,” i.e., the strategy of establishing a pivotal imperial political
Eurasian center in Moscow. This why Russia has always considered the Union
as the most perfidious and effective blow to the unity and strength of the
Orthodox world.

Thus, all things related to the Union were literally demonized and
interpreted as a “sacrilege” and mystical “crime” against the spiritual
foundations of Orthodoxy. Meanwhile, what was ignored was the fact that the
Church Union was a natural phenomenon for all Central European peoples
because it proceeded from their psychological and philosophical background
and the principle of openness to West and East.

As long ago as the 12th century, the princely and boiar elite of Kyivan Rus’
adhered to the concept of a dialogue with the Roman Church. The ideology of
the Union ran through the Ukrainian church milieu throughout the 13th-17th
centuries.

The Union of Brest in 1596 was a qualitatively new and strategic step of the
Ukrainian Church to respond to the challenges of history: the church
embraced Western theological schooling, which at the time was of a much
higher quality than the Orthodox one; it opened up to the progressive world
of ideas, synthesized the influences of Renaissance culture (which gave rise
to the phenomenon of Ukrainian Baroque), and at the same time preserved its
own Byzantine rite, customs, liturgy, and language, thereby becoming a
decisive factor of Ukrainian nation building.

Contrary to the Polish political elite’s expectations, the Uniate Church did
not become a “bridge” for converting the Ukrainians and Belarusians to
Catholicism. Instead, it only cemented Ukrainian- Belarusian society and
made it more mobile. The Uniate Church became a truly national church.

Even the fact that this church structurally revived and gradually won a
prevailing position throughout Right-Bank Ukraine after the reign of Bohdan
Khmelnytsky, when the Cossacks essentially destroyed it, shows its special
organizational dynamics and wholesome directions of development.

As early as the 18th century, both Poland and Russia regarded the Uniate
Church as the main threat to their domination in Ukraine and therefore were
bent on destroying it. In the 19th century, and especially between the 20th
century’s two world wars, the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church was not only
a reliable bastion of Ukrainian spirituality and the national idea but also
an active and influential religious structure, which, in terms of clergymen’s
education, level of theological thought, and the influence of high-quality
rites on the proliferation of the true faith in society, was the equal of
the most powerful national churches of Central Europe.

This occurred at a time when the Russian Orthodox Church was the principal
tool and ideologue of the mass-scale denationalization of Ukrainians in the
rest of Ukraine. So the Union could only exert a “bad” and “corruptive”
influence on Ukraine in the sense that it showed the illustrative example of
a dynamic national church as a source of the nation’s increasing
spirituality.

3. The third myth is that Poland “spoiled” Galician. Galicia was as much
“spoiled” by Poland as Slovakia was by Hungary, which dominated this

Slovak nation for over 1,000 years, Bohemia by Germany, Slovenia and
Croatia by Austria, Bulgaria by Turkey, and Ireland by Britain.

In all these cases, centuries- long colonization of these nations indicates
only that they managed not only to resist the pressure of the dominant
nations for such a long time and finally gain their independence, but also
create a distinct culture, strengthen their national character, and preserve
a high level of spirituality and social mobility.

That the conquered nations borrowed some psychological, social, behavioral,
cultural, and linguistic features from the conquerors while preserving their
deeply rooted national particularities and traditions attests to the complex
and multifaceted nature of their ethnic structure rather than their
“inferiority” or “backwardness.” The once enslaved nations are in no way
worse than the former dominant nations in terms of sociopolitical mobility
and creative potential.

In other words, the Polish social and cultural influences that Galicia
experienced could not prevent it from preserving its inner Ukrainian
essence: it managed to resist the extremely powerful assimilationist
pressure of the Poles and harden its national character.

By all accounts, all nations develop in a never-ending, broad dialogue with
each other. Thus, more often than not foreign cultural influences can play a
positive, encouraging, and enriching role. Suffice it to recall the cultural
wealth England that once took from its conquerors, the Franco-Normans,
France from Italy, Spain from the Arabs, etc.

 It is only the blinkered and xenophobic strata of the population that can
regard the spiritual and social interrelations of peoples as “illness,”
“loss,” etc., without seeing in this the great stimulating function of
international existence.

The myth of the Polish “bane” (recall the works of the great imperial
Russian writer Fedor Dostoevsky, in which all the Polish characters are
portrayed as highly demonic enemies of the “Orthodox world” or simply
wretched milksops) gained such high currency in Russia’s imperialistic and
chauvinistic propaganda because Poland, with its extremely developed
culture, dauntless spirit of Catholicism, and brilliant and militant
aristocracy and nobility, was the main obstacle to Russia’s domination over
Central Europe. In other words, the point is not in the “bad” Poles but in
Russia’s imperial pretensions.

4. It is illogical to accuse Galicia of spreading nationalism all over
Ukraine because it was precisely Dnipro Ukraine that offered Galicia the
first and main impetus to national development. Ivan Kotliarevsky, the
Romantic poets, Mykhailo Maksymovych, Taras Shevchenko, Panteleimon
Kulish, Oleksandr Konysky, Ivan Nechui-Levytsky, Mykhailo Drahomanov,
and Mykhailo Hrushevsky were the chief leaders and inspirers of the 19th-
century Galician national renaissance.

In the 20th century, they were joined by Dmytro Dontsov, Viacheslav
Lypynsky, Yevhen Malaniuk, Yurii Lypa, Oleh Olzhych, and others. Galicia
became the center of the national movement only because it was freer within
the framework of the Austrian constitutional monarchy, and there was no
relentless imperial pressure on the part of Russia, allegedly the
Ukrainians’ “greatest Slavic brother.”

By all accounts, the Galicians carried out the nation-forming program, as
did every former conquered and oppressed European nation. The Czechs,
Slovaks, Lithuanians, Estonians, Latvians, Bulgarians, Romanians, and others
have also resorted to the same forms and methods of national mobilization
and cultural renaissance in order to become full-fledged nations.

There was no “wolfish” nationalism in Galicia: its nationalism was as
militant as the repression of the conquerors was aggressive.
         (TO BE CONTINUED IN THE NEXT ISSUE OF THE DAY)
————————————————————————————————-
LINK: http://www.day.kiev.ua/182433/
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AUR#852 Jun 11 London Stock Exchange; Pepsi Spends $542 Million; Mittal To Spend $1.5 Billion; How To Avoid A New Cold War; Russian ‘Danger’;

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ACTION UKRAINE REPORT – AUR           
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                     By Zbigniew Brzezinski, TIME magazine (Article 12)
                        
ACTION UKRAINE REPORT – AUR – Number 852
Mr. E. Morgan Williams, Publisher and Editor, SigmaBleyzer
KYIV, UKRAINE, MONDAY, JUNE 11, 2007 

               –——-  INDEX OF ARTICLES  ——–
            Clicking on the title of any article takes you directly to the article.               
   Return to the Index by clicking on Return to Index at the end of each article
1. UKRAINE IS COMING TO THE LONDON STOCK EXCHANGE (LSE)
            The Ferrexpo float will be the first full UK listing for a company
                                    from the former Soviet republic.

Jonathan Russell and Iain Dey, Sunday Telegraph
London, United Kingdom, Sunday, June 10, 2007

2.    PEPSIAMERICAS & PEPSICO TO JOINTLY ACQUIRE LEADING
                        JUICE COMPANY SANDORA IN UKRAINE
WebWire, Saturday, June 9, 2007

3.      ARCELOR MITTAL TO INVEST $1.5 BILLION IN UKRAINIAN
                             STEEL MILL IN NEXT FOUR YEARS
Interfax Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine, Sunday, Jun 10, 2007

4. FRENCH FIRMS AXA AND BNP PARIBAS AGREE TO PARTNERSHIP

      IN UKRAINE PROPERTY AND CASUALTY INSURANCE MARKET
By Julia Chan, Banking Business Review
London, United Kingdom, Friday, 8th June 2007

5. 40 UKRAINIAN COMPANIES SHORTLISTED TO BECOME MEMBERS
           OF WEF COMMUNITY OF GLOBAL GROWTH COMPANIES
Ukrainian Times, Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, June 11, 2007

6.   MAJOR GROWTH FOR VOLVO TRUCK DELIVERIES IN UKRAINE
                   Opens large service facilities for Volvo trucks in Odessa
Business-Traveler.EU, Dusseldorf, Germany, Friday, May 25, 2007

7MICROSOFT PUTS ON SALE UKRAINIAN-LANGUAGE WINDOWS
                               VISTA AND OFFICE SYSTEM 2007
Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, May 22, 2007

8.            MCDONALD’S UKRAINE TO INCREASE NUMBER OF

                    RESTAURANTS FROM 57 TO 100 BY  2012-2014 
Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Thursday, May 24, 2007

9.       UKRAINE PHARMACEUTICALS & HEALTHCARE REPORT 
               Provides Independent Forecasts and Competitive Intelligence

                      on Ukraine’s Pharmaceuticals & Healthcare Industry
Business Wire, Dublin, Ireland, Friday, June 1, 2007

        DIGITAL  BROADCASTING FOR ITS SUBSCRIBERS IN THREE
                                KYIV DISTRICTS BY SEPTEMBER
Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Saturday, June 2, 2007

11.         IFC HELPS IDENTIFY OPPORTUNITIES FOR GROWTH
                             IN UKRAINE’S LEASING INDUSTRY
International Finance Corporation (IFC), Kyiv, Ukraine, Fri, June 8, 2007

12.                        HOW TO AVOID A NEW COLD WAR
ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: By Zbigniew Brzezinski
TIME magazine, New York, NY, Thursday, Jun. 07, 2007

13.                        UKRAINE’S UNFULFILLED PROMISE
EDITORIAL: Toledo Blade, Toledo, Ohio, Sunday, June 10, 2007

14.                   UKRAINE HITS OUT AT RUSSIAN ‘DANGER’
By Stefan Wagstyl and Roman Olearchyk
Financial Times, London, UK, Sunday, June 10 2007

15.                UKRAINE: HUMMING, STEAMING HONEYCOMB
                        Economist’s Moscow correspondent tours Ukraine
Correspondent’s Dairy: From Economist.com
London, United Kingdom Friday, Jun 8th 2007

16.           UKRAINE: FROM AUTHORITARIANISM TO REPUBLIC
ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: by Mykola Rubanets, for UP
Original article in Ukrainian, translated by Anna Platonenko
Ukrayinska Pravda (UP), Kyiv, Ukraine,  Saturday, June 9, 2007

17UKRAINE: YUSHCHENKO MADE MORE ROOM FOR MANEUVER.
                                    TWO POSSIBLE SCENARIOS
ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: by Viktor Chyvokunya, UP
Original article in Ukrainian, Translated by Eugene Ivantsov
Ukrayinska Pravda, Kyiv, Ukraine, Saturday, June 9, 2007

18. UKRAINE’S EURO-ATLANTIC FUTURE: INTERNATIONAL FORUM I
                     Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday-Wednesday June 11-13, 2007
News Release: Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic Future
New York, New York, Kyiv, Ukraine, June 2007

19CONTAMINATED ZONE NEAR CHERNOBYL NUCLEAR PLANT
                                      INTRIGUING BIOLOGISTS 

The Associated Press, Parishev, Ukraine, Friday, June 8, 2007

20      PHOTOGRAPHER CAPTURES CHERNOBYL SINCE 1993
Thomas Keating, East Valley Tribune, Phoenix, Arizona, Sat, June 9, 2007

 
Frank Scheck, Reuters/Hollywood Reporter, New York, NY, Fri, Jun 8, 2007 
 
22.                                     SCHOOL OF HATRED
                                    Galaciaphobia: Myths and Facts
By Oleh BAHAM, Expert at the Mohyla School of Journalism
The Day Weekly Digest, Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, June 5, 2007
========================================================
1
UKRAINE IS COMING TO THE LONDON STOCK EXCHANGE (LSE)
            The Ferrexpo float will be the first full UK listing for a company
                                    from the former Soviet republic.

Jonathan Russell and Iain Dey, Sunday Telegraph
London, United Kingdom, Sunday, June 10, 2007

Ferrexpo, a Ukrainian iron ore giant, will this week brave volatile markets
to press ahead with its £1bn-plus flotation on London’s main market. The
float will be the first full UK listing for a company from the former Soviet
republic.

Konstantin Zhevago, the Ukrainian oligarch who owns the company, plans to
raise $500m (£254m) by selling a quarter of his holding. Ferrexpo controls
the world’s fourth-largest iron ore reserves and the biggest deposits in
Europe at its Poltava mine.

JPMorgan Cazenove, the company’s sponsor, has set a price range valuing
Ferrexpo at between $1.4bn and $1.8bn. It will be fixed this Friday and
trading in the shares should start on Monday. “People are interested but
they will try and get it as cheaply as possible,” said one potential
investor.

Shares in world markets tumbled last week on the back of concerns of rising
interest rates. The FTSE100 closed the week 2.6 per cent lower while the
FTSE250 of mid-market stocks experienced its worst week of trading since
May 2002, tumbling by 5 per cent over the five days.

Despite the sharp falls, leading strategists said they remained bullish
about the general state of the economy.

Bernd Meyer, the head of pan-European equity strategy at Deutsche Bank,
said: “We have to differentiate between short term and long term. Our view
of the economy is quite bullish. The current cycle cannot be compared with
anything we have seen in the past 20 years.

“It should be compared with the 1950s and early 1960s when the rebuilding of
the infrastructure in Germany mirrored the current growth in infrastructure
in China. Germany kept its currency low by buying gold just as China is
buying Treasury Bonds now.

“The growth in the 1950s only ended when there was no unemployment in
Germany. In China the World Bank expects the rate of urbanisation to keep
wage inflation under control. The IMF expects global growth to continue at 5
per cent for the next three years. Although there are risks we think it will
be at least five years before inflation becomes an issue.”

Binit Patel, a Goldman Sachs economist, said: “The markets are readjusting
to a new level of yields. Markets have to adjust when interest rates go up.

The big event will be the publication of consumer price index numbers in the
US. It will be a big focus for bond and equity markets. If the news is
fairly benign a lot of tension will come out of the markets. We need to see
pressure coming off interest rates.”

Other companies are also planning to float in the coming weeks. Cardsave, a
supplier of credit card terminals to small retailers, is poised for an £80m
listing on Aim. Fox-Pitt Kelton is expected to begin marketing the company
to investors later this week.

It is looking to raise £40m-£50m of new money, to allow a partial exit for
its private equity backers, RJD Partners. It is understood that the company
believes the turmoil in the markets will not derail the plans, with a
listing planned for the middle of July.

Jim Ormonde, the Cardsave chief executive and a former BBC journalist, is
also trimming his holding, landing a multi-million pound windfall.

In Europe, Shurgard, a storage company, is preparing to float on Euronext
for Euro600m (£408m). The company owns 167 units in seven European

countries, including the UK. Morgan Stanley, Merrill Lynch and Credit
Suisse started marketing on Friday.

Others remain cautious. “Although markets are at an all-time high they are
choppy, and the sentiment for floats is really not there. Large ones are
either being repriced or pulled,” said one senior banker.           -30-
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http://www.telegraph.co.uk/money/main.jhtml?xml=/money/2007/06/10/cnukraine110.xml
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2.     PEPSIAMERICAS & PEPSICO TO JOINTLY ACQUIRE
         LEADING JUICE COMPANY SANDORA IN UKRAINE

WebWire, Saturday, June 9, 2007

PepsiAmericas, Inc. (NYSE: PAS) and PepsiCo (NYSE: PEP) today
announced that they have reached an agreement to jointly acquire 80
percent of Sandora, LLC (“Sandora”), the leading juice company in Ukraine.

 The acquisition, for a total purchase price of $542 million plus assumed
debt, provides PepsiAmericas and PepsiCo a strong platform for growth in
the emerging Ukrainian market.

Ukraine is one of the fastest growing beverage markets in Europe with more
than 46 million consumers. Sandora has established itself as the leader in
the high growth juice category with a range of distinctly positioned brands
that represent approximately half of the total juice volume consumed in
Ukraine.

With over 3,500 employees, Sandora has a powerful sales and distribution
organization and two modern production facilities located in Nikolaev.

“We’re excited to extend our strong partnership with PepsiCo to create a new
model for beverage growth in Ukraine,” said Robert C. Pohlad, Chairman and
Chief Executive Officer of PepsiAmericas. “We have a clear strategy to grow
through the expansion of our international business and Sandora is a great
fit.

It provides immediate scale in a high growth market and a strong business
platform to leverage and expand into other categories. Ukraine’s emerging
economy and beverage market, coupled with Sandora’s strong brands and
distribution capabilities, provide significant growth potential.”

“Our expansion into Ukraine adds another important contiguous market to
our international portfolio, following Romania last year,” said Kenneth E.
Keiser, President and Chief Operating Officer of PepsiAmericas. “This
acquisition will allow us to further leverage our capabilities,
infrastructure and go-to-market system.”

“Sandora’s market-leading brands will be a wonderful addition to our
portfolio,” said Michael White, vice chairman of PepsiCo and chief executive
officer of PepsiCo International. “We look forward to working in partnership
with the Sandora team and to continuing to serve consumers throughout
Ukraine.”

PepsiAmericas and PepsiCo will acquire 80 percent of Sandora through a
new joint venture in which PepsiAmericas will hold a 60 percent interest.

Leveraging the capabilities and experience of the Sandora team,
PepsiAmericas will manage the day-to-day operations of the business, while
PepsiCo will oversee the brand development. The joint venture expects to
acquire the remaining 20 percent interest in Sandora in November 2007.

The transaction, expected to close in the third quarter of 2007, is subject
to customary regulatory approvals. PepsiAmericas will consolidate the joint
venture into its financial results. PepsiCo will recognize the earnings of
the joint venture as equity income in PepsiCo International’s line of
business.

While PepsiAmericas expects the acquisition to be $0.02 to $0.03 dilutive in
2007, PepsiAmericas maintains its full year adjusted earnings per share
outlook of $1.35 to $1.40.

PepsiAmericas expects the transaction to be $0.01 accretive to earnings per
share in 2008. The transaction will have no impact on PepsiCo’s previously
announced earnings per share guidance for 2007.                -30

————————————————————————————————–
AUR FOOTNOTE: Speaking in an interview with Interfax-Ukraine Sandora
confirmed the deal, saying that detailed information would be announced
on June 11.
The man stockholders of Sandora Ltd. are citizens of Lithuania Igor Bezzub
and Raimondas Tumenas, each of whom have a 45% stake, and who in 1995
provided the starting capital to realize a business idea of Serhiy Sypko,
professor of the Mykolaiv shipbuilding plant. At present, Sypko is Sandora’s
director general. He owns a 10% stake in the company.
 
Sandora’s share on Ukraine’s juice market is estimated at 47%.   
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3.           ARCELOR MITTAL TO INVEST $1.5 BILLION IN
            UKRAINIAN STEEL MILL IN NEXT FOUR YEARS

Interfax Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine, Sunday, Jun 10, 2007

KRYVYI  RIH – The world’s largest steel firm Arcelor  Mittal  is to
invest $1.5 billion in the coming four years in the reconstruction  of
the Mittal  Steel Kryvyi Rih steel mill, the mill’s General Director
Narendra Chaudhary told reporters.

Loans  from  the  European  Bank for Reconstruction and Development
will account  for  a  relatively  small  share in overall investment, he
said.

Under  the  business  plan, $277 million will be put into the steel
mill’s retooling in 2007, he said.

Volodymyr  Sheremet,  the  steel  mill’s production chief, said the
shareholders  planned to build a sinter plant with an annual capacity
of 9 million tonnes.

“Building a sinter plant is tantamount to building an entire mill,”
Sheremet said. The sinter plant currently in operation will be shut
down after the new one is put into operation,” he added.

Mittal  Steel  Kryvyi  Rih,  formerly  Kryvorizhstal,  is Ukraine’s
largest  steel  enterprise  with  an  annual  capacity of over 6 million
tonnes of  rolled  stock,  about  7 million tonnes of steel and over 7.8
million tonnes of pig iron.                             -30-
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LINK: http://www.interfax.com/3/281435/news.aspx
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4. FRENCH FIRMS AXA AND BNP PARIBAS AGREE TO PARTNERSHIP
      IN UKRAINE PROPERTY AND CASUALTY INSURANCE MARKET

By Julia Chan, Banking Business Review
London, United Kingdom, Friday, 8th June 2007

LONDON – French insurance giant AXA and French banking group BNP

Paribas have reached an agreement to establish a partnership in the Ukrainian
property and casualty insurance market.

Under the terms of the agreement, AXA will acquire a 50% stake in BNP
Paribas’ insurance subsidiary Ukrainian Insurance Alliance (UIA). The 50%
shareholding will be purchased from BNP Paribas’ subsidiary UkrSibbank.

As a result, AXA will take the management control of the joint company,
which will benefit from an exclusive bancassurance distribution agreement
with UkrSibbank for an initial period of 10 years.

UIA is primarily engaged in selling individual motor and property insurance
through UkrSibbank’s 1,000 branches. In 2006, it more than doubled its
revenues compared to the previous year to $35 million.

This partnership will allow both companies to grow faster in the Ukrainian
property and casualty insurance market.

In addition, UIA will be well positioned to seize the growth prospects of
the Ukrainian market by combining the strength of UkrSibbank’s network
and AXA’s expertise in insurance product development, client service and
claims management.

The transaction is subject to regulatory approvals but is expected to close
by the end of 2007.                                -30-
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http://www.banking-business-review.com/article_news.asp?guid=2E999A7F-8277-41E9-A665-81CF2D30D6FC

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========================================================
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========================================================
5. 40 UKRAINIAN COMPANIES SHORTLISTED TO BECOME MEMBERS
          OF WEF COMMUNITY OF GLOBAL GROWTH COMPANIES

Ukrainian Times, Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, June 11, 2007

Geneva – Forty Ukrainian companies have been shortlisted to become members
of the World Economic Forum’s Community of Global Growth Companies.

A select group of Global Growth Companies such as KINTO, Infocom,

VABank, Ukrainian Cargo Couriers and others have been invited to a private
networking event organized in collaboration with the American Chamber of
Commerce in Ukraine on June 12.

The purpose of this meeting is to discuss the role of this new business
community and, particularly, how Ukrainian companies can benefit from it.

The Community of Global Growth Companies includes companies that: – are
established and expanding outside their traditional boundaries; – experience
growth rates exceeding 15% year-on-year; – have revenues typically between
$100 million and $2 billion; – are proven entrepreneurial companies in the
early stages of going global; – demonstrate strength in a particular niche.

On September 6-8, the World Economic Forum (WEF) will bring together in
Dalian, China, this new generation of companies that will fundamentally
change the global competitive landscape.

These are the Microsofts, Googles, Nestles and Siemens of tomorrow, the
companies, which are yet small compared with today’s multinationals, but
have the potential to join the global top-500 companies within the next
decade.

In this context, Peter Torreele, Managing Director of the World Economic
Forum, sees Ukraine as a country with huge potential for Global Growth
Companies: “Ukraine, being one of the largest countries in Europe, with
tremendous industrial and intellectual potential, will definitely advance
its position in the global markets in the nearest future.

I see Ukrainian Global Growth Companies as a locomotive for this process;
these companies will demand access to the global business community,
international networking and strategic insights on foreign markets. I hope
that our new initiative will be the optimal solution for them.”
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========================================================      
6.  MAJOR GROWTH FOR VOLVO TRUCK DELIVERIES IN UKRAINE
                  Opens large service facilities for Volvo trucks in Odessa

Business-Traveler.EU, Dusseldorf, Germany, Friday, May 25, 2007

In 2006 Volvo truck deliveries increased by 62 percent in the Ukranian
market compared to the previous year, putting Volvo in the lead among
importers of trucks in the Ukraine.

By opening large service facilities in Odessa, Volvo Trucks is taking
long-term steps to further increase its presence in the country.

“Due to the strong economic growth in the region and growing trade between
East and West the need for truck transport is increasing,” says Roger Alm,
director Region East at Volvo Trucks.

“We plan to develop our presence in the Ukraine and chose to locate our new
Truck Center in Odessa. We believe it will be an important business region
and serve as a hub for transportation between East and West.”

With the new Truck Center, Volvo Trucks is now in a position to offer its
customers in the Odessa region total transport solutions including workshop
and financial services, as well as sales of trucks and spare parts.

Volvo Trucks has operated in the Ukraine since 1996 and has one wholly-owned
Volvo Truck Center in Kiev as well as five workshops in its dealer network.
——————————————————————————————————-
http://www.business-traveler.eu/nachrichten/6921/Major-growth-for-Volvo-Trucks-in-the-Ukraine.html
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7.    MICROSOFT PUTS ON SALE UKRAINIAN-LANGUAGE

                WINDOWS VISTA AND OFFICE SYSTEM 2007 

Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, May 22, 2007

KYIV – Microsoft Corporation has introduced its Ukrainian-language Windows
Vista operating system and Office System 2007 software to the Ukrainian
market. Microsoft Ukraine director general Valerii Lanovenko announced this
at a press conference.

He said the process of localization of these products started almost two
years and a half ago, and there has been some difficulties in translation as
350 new terms are in use in the new products in all.

‘On the one hand, sometimes the notions simply do not exist in Ukrainian,
sometimes they do, but cannot be used in the IT industry in relation to IT
tasks.

Besides the need to choose the required term that suits some particular
function or situation best of all, the task, of course, was to retain the
original sense of the code itself and messages viewed by users,’ Lanovenko
said.

The Ukrainian and Russian version of the products are offered at the same
price and, as Microsoft Ukraine product marketing manager Yurii Pederii
said, at the moment the products are available in the network of the company
partners and will appear in retail sale within a month.

Lanovenko noted that Ukrainian-language products will be at first more
popular with the government agencies and education establishments.

During the process of product localization, the corporation has been in
cooperation with the Ukrainian government agencies in charge of terminology,
and representatives of the Ukrainian academic sector, which in the end
allowed for building a unified database of terms.

The working group that translated and adjusted Windows Vista Office System
2007 consisted of representatives of the Microsoft office in Ukraine and the
company head office, several contractors and government organizations.

Volodymyr Sharov, head of the Intel representative office, said Intel
products on the basis of Intel Core micro-architecture and Windows Vista
operating system were released nearly at the same time.

With the advent of the localized version of Windows Vista and Office System
2007, Ukrainian users can obtain up-to-date systems on the basis of Intel
Core 2 Duo processors which will fully change their idea of interface,
digital entertainment technologies and multi-task operation capacities.

Volodymyr Bolotnykov, marketing manager at IT Samsung Electronics Ukraine,
said that his corporation began the production of new line-up of notebooks
in line with recent market trends.

‘Besides the powerful Intel Core 2 Duo processor, notebooks have ATI Radeon
Xpress 1250 graphic cards of new generation and work properly under the
guidance of Windows Vista Premium operating system,’ Bolotnykov said.

As Ukrainian News earlier reported, Microsoft Corporation put on sale for
private clients in Ukraine its new Windows Vista operation system and Office
System 2007 software on January 30, and on general sale on January 31.
————————————————————————————————–

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========================================================
    NOTE: Send in a letter-to-the-editor today. Let us hear from you.
========================================================
8.    MCDONALD’S UKRAINE TO INCREASE NUMBER OF
             RESTAURANTS FROM 57 TO 100 BY 2012-2014 

Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Thursday, May 24, 2007

KYIV – McDonald’s Ukraine company intends to increase number of restaurants
from 57 to 100 by 2012-2014. McDonald’s Ukraine director general Ihor Delov
disclosed this to Ukrainian News. “In 5-7 years, we will increase the number
of restaurants to 100,” he said.

Delov marked that this year, it is planned to open four restaurants, and at
least five in 2008. He said that average cost of opening one McDonald’s
restaurant in Ukraine is about USD 1.5 million.

McDonald’s president for Eastern Europe Khamzat Khazbulatov said that
currently, the market share of the company is only 50%.

As Ukrainian News earlier reported, in 2007, McDonald’s Ukraine plans to
invest about UAH 38 million into development of its chain.

In 2006, McDonald’s Ukraine opened three restaurants in Kyiv, Lviv and
Dnipropetrovsk. Currently, McDonald’s Ukraine chain consists of 57
restaurants in 16 large cities. McDonald’s has worked in Ukraine since 1997
and is the world’s fast food leader.                       -30-

———————————————————————————————–
FOOTNOTE: It seems to me 100 restaurants was the same goal that
was announced by McDonald’s in 1997 when they opened in Ukraine
and the goal to open 100 restaurants was, I think, in 10 years or less. 
If this is correct then McDonald’s is behind their original projections. 
I attended the opening of the first two McDonald’s in Kyiv in 1997. 
AUR EDITOR
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9. UKRAINE PHARMACEUTICALS & HEALTHCARE REPORT 
                Provides Independent Forecasts and Competitive Intelligence
                      on Ukraine’s Pharmaceuticals & Healthcare Industry
 
Business Wire, Dublin, Ireland, Friday, June 1, 2007

DUBLIN, Ireland – Research and Markets has announced the addition of
“Ukraine Pharmaceuticals & Healthcare Report Q4 2006” to their offering.

Ukraine’s pharmaceutical market continues to grow rapidly in value terms.
Estimates by Russian market research agency RMBC indicate that Ukraine’s
packaged pharmaceutical market grew 18% year-on-year (y-o-y) over the first
nine months of 2006. BMI predicts that the Ukrainian market will reach a
total retail value of US$1.94bn in 2006, growing to US$2.49bn by 2010.

The compound annual growth rate for the market is forecasted at 9.4% for the
period 2005 to 2010, making Ukraine one of the fastest growing markets in
Central and Eastern Europe.

Still, strong recent growth has failed to attract much direct investment in
the production sector as multinationals have preferred to invest in
production in the larger and comparatively more stable Russian market to the
east.

Despite impressive market growth, the year 2006 also served to justify the
hesitation of investors in the pharmaceutical and broader healthcare sector
in Ukraine. The country’s government was essentially paralysed from mid-2005
to mid-2006, with President Viktor Yushchenko unable to force through a
working government until August.

With a cabinet headed by Yushchenko’s former arch rival and Party of Regions
chief Viktor Yanukovich, the government seemed to creep back to life for
much of Q406, only to descend again into conflict in December.

The result of this instability has been reflected in the pharmaceutical
market, where a number of decrees have been promulgated and plans

announced only for deadlines to slip and implementation postponed.

One major example is a decree published by the previous caretaker government
at the beginning of 2006 that called for a ‘Plan of Development’ for the
domestic pharmaceuticals industry. There is little sign that this plan has been
implemented, and it is not even clear if it still exists as a roadmap.
         LARGE SCALE FOREIGN INVESTMENT ABSENT
Large scale foreign investment is still notable by its almost complete
absence, however, notwithstanding relatively small investments by companies
such as Bioton (Poland) in insulin maker Indar and a packaging plant built
by Gedeon Richter (Hungary).

Rather, strong market players are leading the consolidation process in the
domestic market with Darnitsa, Arterium and Borshchagovsky topping the
domestic sector.

Foreign players will likely stay on the sidelines, waiting to see if
Ukraine’s economy continues to defy the odds and grow steadily despite

the prospect of further large price hikes on gas imposed by Russia.

Ukraine’s mixed picture translates into a continued 10th place rating among
the 14 CEE major pharmaceutical markets featured in the Q406 Business
Environment Rankings.

Without some clear direction by government aimed at simplifying and
speeding procedures and dealing with corruption and counterfeiting, the
country will remain a secondary market in many ways.  Such robust action
by the government is, however, unlikely in the foreseeable future.

Companies Mentioned:
— Arterium; Gedeon Richter; Krka; Lek (Novartis/Sandoz)

————————————————————————————————–
LINK: http://www.researchandmarkets.com/reports/c58721.
Contact: Research and Markets, Laura Wood, Senior Manager
press@researchandmarkets.com; Fax: +353 1 4100 980
————————————————————————————————–
http://www.pharmalive.com/News/index.cfm?articleid=447384&categoryid=54
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10. KYIV’S LARGEST CABLE TV OPERATOR VOLIA TO INTRODUCE
        DIGITAL  BROADCASTING FOR ITS SUBSCRIBERS IN THREE
                                KYIV DISTRICTS BY SEPTEMBER

Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Saturday, June 2, 2007

KYIV – The Kyiv largest cable TV operator Volia company intends to

introduce digital broadcasting for its subscribers in Kyiv Obolonskyi,
Kharkivskyi and Troeschynskyi districts instead of analog broadcasting by
September. Volia company president Serhii Boiko disclosed this at a press
conference.

At the same time, the company plans to monthly transfer about 28,000
subscribers from analog broadcasting to digital one.

Boiko has also marked that the level of digital broadcasting penetration is
quite high in those districts.

“These three districts… may have 20% of all subscribers, who use analog

TV broadcasting, all other use digital one,” Boiko said.

As Ukrainian News earlier reported, Volia company provides analogue cable
television broadcasting services under the brand name Volia Cable, digital
television broadcasting services under the brand name Volia Premium TV, and
Internet access via cable networks under the Volia Broadband trademark.

Volia group of companies is owned by the Ukrainian Growth Fund (UGF),
which is managed by SigmaBleyzer international company.            -30-
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11. IFC HELPS IDENTIFY OPPORTUNITIES FOR GROWTH
                        IN UKRAINE’S LEASING INDUSTRY

International Finance Corporation (IFC), Kyiv, Ukraine, Fri, June 8, 2007

KYIV, Ukraine – IFC, the private sector arm of the World Bank Group,
today released the results of a survey on Ukraine’s leasing industry that
highlight growth in the sector and indicate expansion of the nation’s
financial markets.

The survey reveals that challenges remain, including the relatively high
cost of leasing, which prevents some businesses from accessing this option
to upgrade equipment or expand production.

This study is the third annual survey conducted by the IFC Ukraine Leasing
Development Project, with support from the Agency for International
Business and Cooperation, part of the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs.

The results, which assessed performance during the year 2005-2006, are
based on responses from 60 leasing companies.

Findings indicate that demand for leasing services as an alternative
financial instrument has grown significantly in Ukraine:  the total value of
the leasing portfolio expanded by more than 108 percent, while the number
of leasing companies in operation increased by 20 percent.

The leasing industry is stabilizing and supporting an increasing number of
jobs, long-term contracts are on the rise, and industry employment grew 50
percent during the period.

Several factors are contributing to this growth, such as increased interest
in leasing from foreign-owned banks entering the market, growing public
awareness, rapid development of Ukraine’s financial markets, and improved
access to credit.

While the potential for growth remains high, the survey finds that there are
still many obstacles. Issues to be addressed include changes in the tax code
to make leasing a more viable option for businesses, and the absence of
credit bureaus and a well-developed secondary asset market.

At a roundtable discussion to present the findings, Ernst Mehrengs, IFC
Project Manager, said, “Leasing is an effective mechanism for the
replacement of equipment, increasing sales volumes of equipment producers,
encouraging technological progress in the design of equipment, and creating
new employment opportunities.”

Mehrengs noted that the government’s recent effort to amend the national tax
code with incentives for leasing is an additional step in the right
direction. “If the draft of the amended tax code is approved, leasing will
become less expensive for the lessee, thus increasing overall demand for
leasing products and benefiting the overall economy,” he said.
                                            ABOUT IFC
IFC, the private sector arm of the World Bank Group, promotes open and
competitive markets in developing countries.  IFC supports sustainable
private sector companies and other partners in generating productive jobs
and delivering basic services, so that people have opportunities to escape
poverty and improve their lives.

Through FY06, IFC Financial Products has committed more than $56 billion
in funding for private sector investments and mobilized an additional $25
billion in syndications for 3,531 companies in 140 developing countries.

IFC Advisory Services and donor partners have provided more than $1 billion
in program support to build small enterprises, to accelerate private
participation in infrastructure, to improve the business enabling
environment, to increase access to finance, and to strengthen environmental
and social sustainability. For more information, please visit www.ifc.org.
    ABOUT THE DUTCH AGENCY FOR INTERNATIONAL
                         BUSINESS AND COOPERATION
The Agency for International Business and Cooperation is part of the Dutch
Ministry of Economic Affairs.  Its mission is to promote and encourage
international business and international cooperation.

As a government agency and a partner with businesses and public sector
organizations, its goal is to help public and private institutions achieve
success in their international operations.

A growing number of organizations, government institutions, and companies
have come to rely on the agency for information about foreign markets,
governments, and trade and industry. It develops products and services that
meet the needs of its customers and clients.

Information comes from its network of Dutch and international organizations,
which include international finance institutions, the European Commission,
embassies, chambers of commerce, local business support offices, trade
representative associations, and other trade and industry groups.  For more
information, please visit www.evd.nl.

In Moscow: Ilya Sverdlov; Tel +7495-411-7555; E-mail: isverdlov@ifc.org
In Kyiv: Andriy Gulay; Tel +380-44-490-6400; E-mail: agulay@ifc.org
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LINK: http://www.ifc.org/ifcext/media.nsf/content/SelectedPressRelease?OpenDocument&UNID=CB312EE83C8A88A3852572F300696E00
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12.          HOW TO AVOID A NEW COLD WAR

ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: By Zbigniew Brzezinski
TIME magazine, New York, NY, Thursday, Jun. 07, 2007

America’s relationship with Russia is on a downward slide. President
Vladimir Putin’s recent threat to retarget Russian missiles at some of
America’s European allies is just the latest flash point.

The elaborate charade of feigned friendship between Putin and President
George W. Bush, begun several years ago when Bush testified to the
alleged spiritual depth of his Russian counterpart’s soul, hasn’t helped.

The fact that similarly staged “friendships”–between F.D.R. and “Uncle
Joe” Stalin, Nixon and Brezhnev, Clinton and Yeltsin–ended in mutual
disappointment did not prevent Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice from
boasting not long ago that U.S.-Russian relations were now the best in
history.

Surely it would be preferable to achieve a genuine, sustainable improvement
before staging public theatrics designed to create the illusion that one has
taken place. It’s a lesson Bush should keep in mind in July, when Putin is
scheduled to visit the President in Kennebunkport, Maine.

There are many reasons for the chill but none greater than the regrettable
wars both nations have launched: Russia’s in Chechnya and the U.S.’s in
Iraq.

The wars have damaged prospects for what seemed attainable a decade and a
half ago: Russia and the U.S. genuinely engaged in collaboration based on
shared common values, spanning the old cold war dividing lines and thereby
enhancing global security and expanding the transatlantic community.

The war in Chechnya reversed the ambiguous trend toward democracy in
Russia.Mercilessly waged by Putin with extraordinary brutality, it not only
crushed a small nation long victimized by Russian and then Soviet
imperialism but also led to political repression and greater authoritarianism inside
Russia and fueled chauvinism among Russia’s people.

Putin exploited his success in stabilizing the chaotic post-Soviet society
by restoring central control over political life. The war in Chechnya became
his personal crusade, a testimonial to the restoration of Kremlin clout.

Since the beginning of that war, a new élite–the siloviki from the FSB (the
renamed KGB) and the subservient new economic oligarchs–has come to
dominate policymaking under Putin’s control.

This new élite embraces a strident nationalism as a substitute for communist
ideology while engaging in thinly veiled acts of violence against political
dissenters.

Putin almost sneeringly dismissed the murder of a leading Russian
journalist, Anna Politkovskaya, who exposed crimes against the Chechens.

Similarly, troubling British evidence of Russian involvement in the London
murder of an outspoken FSB defector produced little more than official
Russian ridicule. All the while, Russia’s mass media are facing ever growing
political restrictions.

It doubtless has not escaped the Kremlin’s attention that the West,
including the U.S., has remained largely silent. The Bush Administration
was indifferent to the slaughter in Chechnya, and after 9/11 it even tacitly
accepted Putin’s claim that in crushing the Chechens, he was serving as a
volunteer in Bush’s global “war on terror.”

The killing of journalist Politkovskaya and Putin’s dismissal of its import
similarly failed to temper the affectations of personal camaraderie between
the leaders in the White House and the Kremlin. For that matter, neither has
the general antidemocratic regression in Russia’s political life.

The apparent American indifference should not be attributed just to a moral
failure on the part of U.S. policymakers. Russia has gained impunity in part
because of the effects of America’s disastrous war in Iraq on U.S. foreign
policy.

Consider the fallout: Guantánamo has discredited America’s long-standing
international legitimacy; false claims of Iraqi WMD have destroyed U.S.
credibility; continuing chaos and violence in Iraq have diminished respect
for U.S. power.

America, as a result, has come to need Russia’s support on matters such as
North Korea and Iran to a far greater extent than it would if not for Iraq.

As a consequence, two dominant moods now motivate the Kremlin élite:
schadenfreude at the U.S.’s discomfort and a dangerous presumption that
Russia can do what it wishes, especially in its geopolitical backyard. The
first has led Moscow to take malicious slaps at America’s tarnished
superpower status, propelled by feel-good expectations of the U.S.’s further
slide.

One should not underestimate Russia’s resentment over the fall of the Soviet
Union (Putin has called it the greatest disaster of the 20th century) and
its hope that the U.S. will suffer the same fate.

Indeed, Kremlin strategists surely relish the thought of a U.S. deeply
bogged down not only in Iraq but also in a war with Iran, which would
trigger a dramatic spike in the price of oil, a commodity in plentiful
supply in Russia.

The second mood–that Russia has free rein to act as it pleases on the
international scene–is also ominous.

It has already tempted Moscow to intimidate newly independent Georgia;
reverse the gains of the Orange Revolution in Ukraine; wage aggressive
cyberwar against E.U. member Estonia after the Estonians dared to remove
from the center of their capital a monument celebrating Soviet domination of
their country; impose an oil embargo on Lithuania; monopolize international
access to the energy resources of Central Asia.

In all these cases, the U.S., consumed as it is by the war in Iraq, has been
rather passive. U.S. policy toward Russia has been more grandiloquent than
strategic.

Despite the tensions, the uneasy state of the relationship need not augur a
renewed cold war. The longer-term trends simply do not favor the more
nostalgic dreams of the Kremlin rulers. For all of Russia’s economic
recovery, its prospects are uncertain.

Russia’s population is dramatically shrinking, even as its Asian neighbors
are growing and expanding their military and economic might. The glamour
of Moscow and the glitter of St. Petersburg cannot obscure the fact that
much of Russia still lacks a basic modern infrastructure.

Oil-rich Russia (its leaders refer to it as an “energy superstate”) in some
ways is reminiscent of Nigeria, as corruption and money laundering fritter
away a great deal of the country’s wealth.

To an extent, Russia can use its vast profits to get its way. But buying
influence, even in Washington (where money goes a long way), cannot match
the clout the Soviet Union once enjoyed as the beacon of an ideology with
broad international appeal.

In these circumstances, the U.S. should pursue a calm, strategic (and
nontheatrical) policy toward Moscow that will help ensure that a future,
more sober Kremlin leadership recognizes that a Russia linked more closely
to the U.S. and the E.U. will be more prosperous, more democratic and
territorially more secure.

The U.S. should avoid careless irritants, like its clumsily surfaced
initiative to deploy its missile defenses next door to Russia. And it should
not dismiss out of hand Moscow’s views on, for example, negotiations with
Iran, lest Russia see its interests better served by a U.S.-Iran war.

But the U.S. should react firmly when Russia tries to bully its neighbors.
America should insist that Russia ratify the European Energy Charter to
dispel fears of energy blackmail.

The U.S. should continue to patiently draw Ukraine into the West so that
Russia will have to follow suit or risk becoming isolated between the
Euro-Atlantic community and a powerful China.

And, above all, the U.S. should terminate its war in Iraq, which is so
damaging to America’s ability to conduct an intelligent and comprehensive
foreign policy.                                          -30-
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NOTE: Zbigniew Brzezinski who served in the Carter Administration as

National Security Advisor, is author of “Second Chance: Three Presidents
and the Crisis of American Superpower”
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LINK: http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1630544,00.html
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13.   UKRAINE’S UNFULFILLED PROMISE

EDITORIAL: Toledo Blade, Toledo, Ohio, Sunday, June 10, 2007

AMONG Eastern Europe’s large countries, the most consistent under-
performer since the demise of the Soviet Union has been Ukraine, which
is bogged down once again in a major intra-government scrap that stands
in the way of economic or any other progress.

With a population of 47 million, Ukraine is not only big but it also
benefits from having a lot of friends around the world, not the least of
which is the United States. America is home to many Ukrainian-Americans
who support aid to the country in consolidating its independence and
building up its economy.

Nonetheless, for a variety of reasons, some of them hard to justify, Ukraine
has lagged behind other Eastern European countries in moving forward to
take advantage of the opportunities open to it, in terms of political
development and in improving its prospects to join the European Union,
generally considered a positive step in that part of the world.

Instead, nasty political blood-letting continues unabated between rival
elements in Ukraine. The most recent round involves familiar names,
President Viktor A. Yushchenko and Prime Minister Viktor F. Yanukovich,
opponents in the 2004 presidential elections which featured, among other
examples of viciousness, an apparent attempt to kill Mr. Yushchenko by
poisoning. The incident left the president disfigured and close to death for
a while.

A fundamental problem appears to be divisions among Ukrainians based
on regions and languages. Rather than see these as splits in national unity
that need to be resolved for the country to move forward, Ukrainians
continue to dwell on their differences.

It is in part this problem that also contributes to the extensive corruption
that pervades the government, a considerable barrier to foreign aid and
investment, as well as to efforts on the part of domestic business people
and financiers to do something with the country’s considerable economic
resources. These include industry, agriculture, and mineral wealth.

Ukrainians also generally have the bad habit of blaming their problems on
the Russians. There is undoubtedly some truth to this, but rather than
seeing such outside influence as an obstacle to overcome by facing Russia
from a position of national unity, Ukrainians seem to play into the
Russians’ hands with their own political scrapping and wrangling.

What’s needed are early elections, free of the viciousness that has
characterized past voting. These could come in September.

Otherwise, Ukraine is doomed to the same sort of hapless non-development
that has characterized its first 16 years of renewed independence – a sad
loss to its people, as well as to the rest of Europe and the world that
awaits fulfillment of Ukraine’s considerable promise.         -30-
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14.              UKRAINE HITS OUT AT RUSSIAN ‘DANGER’

By Stefan Wagstyl and Roman Olearchyk
Financial Times, London, UK, Sunday, June 10 2007

Russian political interference and the lack of transparency around energy
supplies coming mainly from Russia threaten Ukraine as it struggles with
serious political turmoil, the head of the security services in Kiev has
warned.

“We are a young country. For any country it is dangerous when domestic
politics is being interfered with by foreign sources,” said Valentyn
Nalyvaichenko, the acting chief of the SBU, the state security service, in
his first foreign media interview.

He also pointed to the dangers of corruption, weak institutions and a lack
of co-ordination in pursuing big criminal cases.

His remarks came as Ukraine is embroiled in a power struggle between
President Viktor Yushchenko and his rival, Viktor Yanukovich, the prime
minister, in which Moscow takes a keen interest.

A 41-year-old former diplomat and fluent English speaker, Mr Nalyvaichenko
said in the interview at the SBU’s imposing Kiev headquarters last week: “I
feel Ukraine’s independence and statehood should be protected from any
turmoil, domestic or external.”

The road to security lay in domestic reform and in improved co-operation
with foreign security services, including those of the US, EU states,
Israel, Russia and other neighbouring states, he argued.

While Mr Nalyvaichenko, who was picked for his post last year by the
president, was explicit about the danger of Russian interference in Ukraine,
he was careful to avoid pinning any blame on the Russian security services
or other state institution.

He singled out for comment recent anti-Nato demonstrations in Crimea, where
pro-Russian sentiments are strong and where the Russian Black Sea fleet is
based in the Ukrainian port of Sevastopol.

There was no “domestic reason for such negative and active anti-Nato”
protests, said Mr Nalyvaichenko, who, like Mr Yushchenko, is a firm believer
in closer co-operation with Nato.

“Dangerous” slogans were being used in Crimea and “false information” such
as claims that Nato troops would be stationed in Ukraine.

“This is absolutely against the national interest of Ukraine. Using some
so-called pro-Russian organisation in Crimea, politicians – mostly
domestic – are exploiting this issue to boost their popularity,” he said.

The SBU chief indicated he was aware of finance coming from outside Ukraine
and said misusing political financing laws was “a little bit dangerous”.

Those who broke the rules would be prosecuted, he said, citing the example
of Proryv, the Kremlin-backed Russian nationalist youth group which had had
its Sevastopol office closed by a court order.

Donetska Respublika, a separatist grouping in eastern Ukraine, where many
Russia-oriented Ukrainians live, had also been taken to court.

Mr Nalyvaichenko also gave the example of Konstantin Zatulin, the
nationalist Russian MP, who was banned from Ukraine after making
inflammatory speeches.

As for energy security, the SBU chief said the key was greater transparency.
He promised that Russia and Ukraine would this summer provide greater
clarity about the natural gas trade in which the controversial Rosukrenergo
company plays a vital role.

“Ukraine and Russia should make this situation more transparent. [We need to
show] what the real prices are and what the real financial sources are here,
the flowing of money, and risks of dirty money and money laundering. To

know the real situation, the real operators, the real deal, is key.”

The SBU chief complained about the lack of co-operation between state
agencies, saying this undermined the rule of law, and called for reform and
the creation of a new anti-corruption unit.                       -30-
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15.      UKRAINE: HUMMING, STEAMING HONEYCOMB
                    Economist’s Moscow correspondent tours Ukraine

Correspondent’s Dairy: From Economist.com
London, United Kingdom Friday, Jun 8th 2007

                                            MONDAY
ARRIVING in Kiev on a swelteringly hot day last week, I went walking in the
city centre. I found myself exchanging pleasantries with three burly
black-clad commandos, sporting guns and truncheons, sitting in a four-wheel
drive-and eating ice-cream.

Like everyone else on Independence Square they were enjoying the cool gusts
from the fountains. “It is too nice a day to talk about politics”, said one
of them, smiling broadly. “Let’s talk about women.”

I had hit upon a national holiday, when the favourite leisure activity among
a fair proportion of the residents of Kiev seems to consist of wandering
purposelessly along the city’s main shopping street, Khreshchatik.

Stalls on the pavement were doing brisk trade in the usual (for Ukraine)
tourist stuff: yellow and blue national flags, old Soviet red banners, and
T-shirts emblazoned with the portraits of two bitter political rivals-Yulia
Tymoshenko, a populist opposition maverick known for her fiery rhetoric
and plaited hair, and Viktor Yanukovich, the prime minister.

Here at least there was no difference between them: either shirt could be
had for 30 Hryvna (about $6).

One thing missing from the streets was any sign of the protracted political
crisis-a power-struggle between president and parliament-that brought me to
Kiev.

A few hundred meters from Independence Square the Ukrainian parliament was
into its second month of turmoil; President Viktor Yushchenko, having tried
to dissolve it in April, was reduced to issuing decrees that were being
ignored by his own government; even the ice-cream-eating commandos had
seemed on the brink of a violent clash with presidential guards just a few
days before, after the president sacked the prosecutor-general.

Towards the end of 2004 Independence Square was a theatre of the Orange
revolution that brought Mr Yushchenko to power, beating out Mr Yanukovich.

If the public mood has been a lot less troubled this time round, as the two
have clashed again, that argues for two related explanations: first,
Ukrainians have got at least temporarily bored with the whole circus of
politics; and, second, they can afford to get bored, because the economy is
steaming ahead.

There is plenty of food in the shops, new restaurants are springing up on
every corner-and if you don’t fancy shopping or eating, there are large
shady parks giving cover from heat and politics alike.

The conversations I have been having strongly suggest that few Ukrainians
are even trying to understand what is going on in their country any more.
And if they don’t understand, what hope have I?

One obvious thing I can do, coming in from Moscow, is to look for parallels
with Russia. I can think back, for example, to that sunny afternoon in
October 1993 when, after a long stand-off between President Boris Yeltsin
and his parliament, Yeltsin ordered tanks to fire empty shells at the
parliament building.

But the differences between this stand-off in Ukraine, and that stand-off in
Russia, have been far more striking than any similarities.

[1] First, nobody in Ukraine has seemed in the mood for violence. When
troops loyal to Mr Yushchenko drew close to Kiev recently they were stopped
by traffic police loyal to Mr Yanukovich. They got out of their buses and
proceeded on foot, unarmed.

[2] Second, the conflict in Russian reflected an ideological divide.
Die-hard nationalists and communists, ready to hang Boris Yeltsin’s team
from the first tree, confronted an elected pro-Western president hostile to
the Soviet legacy.

The conflict in Ukraine is a lot less straightforward-not least because it
lacks heroes. It is not a fight between communists and capitalists. It is
not even a fight between the Russian-speaking east and the
Polish-comprehending west of Ukraine.

To call Mr Yanukovich “pro-Russian” and Mr Yushchenko “pro-Western” is
no longer accurate: both are seeking closer ties with Europe, and neither
wants to be back in Russia.

The situation in Ukraine is something closer to a plain (if not simple)
power struggle over who will run the country, and how. When the Soviet Union
collapsed in 1991 Ukraine had next to no experience of managing its own
affairs.

Building a state was never going to be easy, and Ukraine made heavy weather
of it. It evolved a style of politics that was all inside baseball, with no
durable rules.

You might almost say that this crisis is to be welcomed, so long as it plays
itself out within the political class, and so long as it leads to agreement
on a few rules sufficient to stop something similar happening all over
again.
                                              TUESDAY
WHEN the call came from an assistant to President Viktor Yushchenko asking
me to be at his office for 3pm, I was genuinely and pleasantly surprised. A
head of state in the middle of a national crisis might reasonably claim to
have more important things to do than talk to journalists.

But if anything else at all was going on inside the building of the
presidential administration, the former headquarters of the Soviet-era
Communist Party in Ukraine, it was a well-kept secret. Everything was eerily
quiet.

The long corridors were empty. The high doors-designed by Soviet architects
to make visitors feel small-were shut. There was no buzz. Nobody was running
up and down with documents.

A colleague and I were ushered up to the president’s floor and into a small,
dimly-lit room with a round table in the middle. (Mr Yushchenko’s taste for
round tables, and for peace-making talks, is a subject of jokes in Kiev.)
With a delay of less than an hour, Mr Yushchenko turned up.

I had interviewed him once before, ten years ago in London when he was still
the head of Ukraine’s Central Bank. He was good-looking, professional,
gentle, smart-but you would not for a moment have called him power-hungry
or charismatic. He certainly did not strike me then as someone destined to
change the course of Ukrainian politics.

By now I imagined him changed into an adrenaline-driven politician thriving
on crisis, a younger Boris Yeltsin. And changed he was; but in another way.
The man who sat in front of me was worn-out and subdued.

His heavily made-up face was scarred still from the dioxin poisoning that
almost killed him a few weeks before the presidential election. He projected
a sense of isolation and loneliness. He seemed divorced from the bustle of
Kiev life and from the circus of parliamentary politics.

I wanted to get him to talk in very basic terms about the seemingly
perpetual political crisis in Ukraine, and how best to resolve it.

I asked him about the differences between his vision for the country and
that of Viktor Yanukovich, his arch-rival, the prime minister. But the
answers he offered were less about the deep political divisions in the
country, and more about legal and procedural issues in the parliament.

He said that Mr Yanukovich’s supporters had been using bribery and pressure
to make members of parliament switch sides: “Our current constitution
prohibits such switches, but they tried to make practice out of it.” The
result, he said, was a parliament with an illegitimate majority.

A fair argument-but precisely the kind of legal talk that has come to so
frustrate the more headstrong of Mr Yushchenko’s supporters, and it is easy
to see why.

As they tell it, they risked their lives taking to the streets in 2004 to
protest against a rigged election and a rotten regime. They expected their
man to take charge, cleanse the system, and punish the bad guys.

Instead the president meekly transferred much of his power to parliament,
honouring changes to the constitution negotiated by his predecessor, Leonid
Kuchma; he tolerated corruption and squabbling among his own allies; and he
watched Mr Yanukovich, the loser in the Orange revolution, engineer a
majority in the newly powerful parliament.

At best, all this was seen as weakness, at worst-as betrayal. “Democracy and
tolerance is all well and good, but how can you be so tolerant and
democratic when everyone else around you is cheating?”, as one frustrated
Yushchenko supporter asked me.

Stand back, and you can see Mr Yushchenko’s problem. The big winner in the
Orange revolution was meant to be the rule of law; Ukraine was to become a
normal, law-abiding country.

If the new president had begun his term by reversing constitutional changes
already under way, that would have sent all the wrong signals.

Instead Mr Yushchenko did the decent thing, and allowed the transfer of some
presidential powers to parliament. But in a political system stunted until
then by a domineering president, this was a recipe for confusion.

Lately Mr Yushchenko has been trying to claw some of his power back, and
that has been a recipe for confusion too.

Mr Yushchenko finds himself caught between his aspirations for Ukraine, and
the political resources with which he must work. And from the looks of him
lately, he is nowhere near reconciling the two.
                                           WEDNESDAY
THE politics in Kiev was all tactical manoeuvring, and I was getting lost in
its complications. To discover more about the two Viktors, Yushchenko and
Yanukovich, I decided to visit their respective constituencies-starting with
Donetsk, the industrial heart of Ukraine, where most people speak Russian
and support Mr Yanukovich.

“Don’t go out after dark,” a friend in Kiev warned me the night before. “It
is poor and rough,” confirmed a nice lady in the presidential
administration. Evidently, Donetsk inspired resentment and fear in
white-collar Kiev.

Walking past the prosecutor-general’s office in the capital, where
thuggish-looking men were gathered (probably for payment) in a show of
support for Mr Yanukovich, I could see why.

The first surprise of the journey was a happy one. The plane to Donetsk was
a smart, clean Boeing, not a Soviet museum-piece. My heart leapt for joy.
But this interlude of modernity soon came to a close.

As we approached Donetsk I could see from the window a painfully familiar
sight: long rows of faceless, grey apartment blocks, typical of any
Soviet-built city.

A walk around the centre of the city was a disorienting experience.
Everything screamed “Soviet Union”: the 1940s architecture, the Red Army
tank on a podium, the statue of  Lenin in front of the local government
building … I pinched myself and looked again. It was a statue to Taras
Shevchenko, a Ukrainian national hero. I needed a drink.

A few minutes later I was sipping cold beer in a shady café in a park, and
falling into conversation with a Donetsk businessman called Alexander. He
ran an insurance firm, he said.

Business was booming. Property prices had risen fivefold in five years.
“Don’t believe anything you hear about Donetsk”, he advised. “The standard
of living here is much higher than in Kiev.”

In his pinstriped summer suit and white shoes, Alexander certainly looked
nothing like the Yanukovich supporters I had glimpsed in Kiev. He was a
member of Donetsk’s thousand-strong Jewish community, he said.

“Yanukovich is not a nationalist”, he continued. “He is good for Jews. We
had never had any problems in Donetsk, not a single Jewish grave has been
desecrated.” It was an unexpected argument.

It turned out that Alexander knew Yanukovich personally and had even worked
with him. “He is a good manager, people like him,” he said. “But what about
his criminal record?”, I asked. “Does not that make him unfit to run the
country?”

Alexander leaned towards me. “Listen”, he said. “What kind of family did you
grow up in?” “A good one,” I readily admitted. “And Yanukovich did not. He
grew up in a really tough family and he had to fend for himself. Besides, he
has served his sentence.” I felt embarrassed.

I wandered back towards the building with the Shevchenko-Lenin statue in
front, where I had an appointment with the head of the local parliament. A
former factory manager, he looked every inch a Soviet red director.

But he did not sound like one. “People in Kiev and in the west of Ukraine
think we are all gangsters and communists”, he said. “So when they come to
visit, which is not often, they feel shocked.”

“Does Donetsk want closer ties with Russia, or with Europe?” I asked him.
His answer was disarmingly pragmatic. “If joining Europe will make us
richer-we are for it.

If being closer to Russia gives us benefits-we should not turn away from it.
The best would be closeness to both,” he said, mixing Russian and Ukranian
as he spoke.

I walked out of his office and down the main street, where I came upon a
firework display. It was the last day of school, and 17-year old graduates
wrapped in national yellow and blue colour ribbons were immersing themselves
in a fountain. “Do you feel closer to Russia or to Europe?” I asked one
dripping-wet student. “I feel close to Ukraine,” she replied.
                                             THURSDAY
FROM Donetsk my plan was to fly to Lviv, the spiritual heart of western
Ukraine, where speaking Russian is considered in bad taste. But to my
astonishment there was no direct air connection between the two far-flung
cities. Unless I fancied a train journey of more than 24 hours, I had to fly
via Kiev.

Back at the domestic terminal in Kiev, I asked for a ticket to Lviv. “We
don’t sell them here. You’ll have to buy it at the international terminal,”
I was told. “But is not Lviv part of Ukraine?” I asked. No answer. I dutifully
bought my ticket at the international terminal.

“Where do I check in?” I enquired. “You have to go to the domestic
 terminal,” came the answer. If nothing else, this mysterious arrangement
captured the ambivalent place of Lviv in Ukrainian history and
consciousness.

For most of its history Lviv (also commonly called Lvov in English) was not
a Ukrainian city, still less a Russian one. From the first partition of
Poland in 1772 until 1918 it was known as Lemberg, and was part of the
Austro-Hungarian empire.

A Baedeker of 1900 described it as “Lemberg, Polish Lwow, French Léopol,
the capital of Galicia with 135,000 inhabitants (one fourth Jews).” Today it
is a city of 750,000, and only few hundred Jews are left.

After the Red Army drove out the Nazis in 1944, Lviv was made part of Soviet
Ukraine. The local airport celebrates the Soviet period with its monumental
sculptures of workers, pilots and peasants pressed against symmetrical
columns. The centre of the city, however, bears almost no mark of Soviet
rule.

It is still a provincial, Mitteleuropean town, forgotten by time. You expect
to hear the distant strains of the Radetzky march reverberating through the
night. The local government building, previously the Communist Party
headquarters, has changed not at all since it accommodated the Habsburg
rulers of Galicia.

“Everything here is exactly as it was under Franz-Joseph,” says Petro
Oliynyk, the current occupant of the governor’s office and a staunch
supporter of President Yushchenko. “The same stoves, the same furniture-
the governor of Krakow has the same,” he says.

Like any conversation in western Ukraine, ours starts with history, both
personal and national. And rare is the personal history here not touched by
family recollections of famine and repression under Stalin.

Mr Oliynyk’s father was prosecuted for joining a liberation army, his mother
was sent to Siberia. “My father hid a local Rabbi in his house,” he says
with particular pride.

For people in Lviv, a mere 80km from the Polish border, the integration of
Ukraine into Europe is not an economic issue, as it might seem in Donetsk,
but an existential one.

The choice between Mr Yushchenko and Mr Yanukovich is seen as the choice
between a European way of life and a post-Soviet one. “We did not fight for
Yuschenko during the Orange revolution-we fought for our own dignity,” a
young businesswoman tells me.

Still carrying my luggage and with no roof for the night, I walk through the
cobbled streets of the old town past Baroque churches, small coffee-shops
and street cafés, to a hotel listed in the 1900 Baedeker: the Grand. It must
have been brand new when the guidebook was published. I ask for a room in
Russian, but the receptionist tells me the hotel is fully booked.

A half-hour later I come back speaking English and several rooms have
mysteriously become available. I get an airy one with parquet floor and high
ceilings, overlooking the old Galician town. It is hard to believe that Lviv
and Donetsk are parts of the same country.

Yet, both here and in Donetsk, people want Ukraine to be an independent
nation, and they don’t seem to have a problem with its diversity. To be
sure, they recognise the historical and cultural divergences, but they are
careful not to turn those differences into divisions.

As one Lviv businessman tells me: “Perhaps western and eastern Ukraine would
be two different countries. But we have Kiev in the middle, and for Kiev it
is one country.”
                                              FRIDAY
I TAKE my leave of Ukraine on this occasion with a long walk through
Kiev-which Mikhail Bulgakov, in “The White Guard”, called, simply, “the
 City”:

“Beautiful in the frost and mist-covered hills above the Dnieper, the life
of the City hummed and steamed like a many-layered honeycomb.

All night long the City shone, glittered and danced with light until
morning, when the lights went out and the City cloaked itself once more
in smoke and mist.”

I start from my hotel, in Podol, the lower part of the city, an old
neighbourhood of craftsmen, merchants and tradesmen that still hums and
steams like a honeycomb.

I walk past Contract Square towards Andreevsky Spusk, an old cobbled lane
that rises in twists and turns to the upper city.

On the left going up is a two-storey building, number 13, where a century
ago Bulgakov lived with his parents. Later he would make this the home of
the Turbin family in “”The White Guard””, changing the name of the street to
Aleskeevsky Spusk.

Amid civil war, in the “great and terrible year of 1918 from the birth of
Christ, the second from the Revolution”, the two brothers and their
red-haired sister would warm themselves by a hot stove, strum guitar strings
and slumber under an old lamp shade: “Never, never remove the lamp-shade!
The lamp-shade is sacred.”

Bulgakov was intoxicated with Kiev, its cabarets, opera, street cafés, trams
and “rows of electric globes suspended high from the elegant curlicues of
tall lamp-posts”. But he saw it least of all as a Ukrainian city and
resented fiercely any manifestation of Ukrainian nationalism, even national
identity. To be “the City” was enough.

Andreevsky Spusk leads up to an astonishing blue and white Baroque church
with golden domes that tower over the city.

Here, at the top of the hill, starts another Kiev-the thousand-year-old
capital of Kievan Rus, the greatest state of eastern Europe, which prospered
from the 10th to the 13th century, and gave birth to Russia, Ukraine, and
Belarus.

Its founders were the Varangians, or Vikings, the Scandinavians who also
conquered parts of England and France. They were invited into the lands of
Rus by feuding Slav tribes who wanted an external ruler to impose order and
law upon them.

The greatest monument to the civilisation of Kievan Rus is the splendid
Santa Sofia Cathedral, built in 1032 by Prince Yaroslav the Wise, the son of
Vladimir the Great, who had adopted Christianity from Byzantium.

It survived Mongol invasion in the mid-13th century, bombing in the second
world war, and even the Soviet habit of blowing up churches.

It has an 18th-century exterior: the original Byzantine brick walls have
been extended and covered in plaster. But inside, as Anna Reid writes in
“Borderland”, a book that any visitor should bring along,

“It breathes the splendid austerity of Byzantium. Etiolated saints, draped
in ochre and pink, march in shadowy fresco round the walls, above them a
massive Virgin hangs in vivid glass mosaic, alone on a deep gold ground.”

In Kiev, and especially in Santa Sofia, the currents of east and west
mingle. Yaroslav tried to tie his sophisticated kingdom to Europe by
marrying his daughters to the kings of Norway, Hungary and France-the last
of whom declared Kiev to be “more unified, happier, stronger and more
civilised than France herself.”

To the extent that there was such a thing as Europe in those days, Ukraine
was a big part of it-and it is unhappy to find itself on the margins of
Europe now.

Yaroslav wisely warned his children: “If ye dwell in envy and dissension,
quarrelling with one another, then ye will perish yourselves and bring to
ruin the land of your ancestors.” There is wisdom here for the politicians
of today, if only they would listen.                           -30-
————————————————————————————————-
LINK: http://www.economist.com/displaystory.cfm?story_id=9280683

————————————————————————————————-
[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
========================================================
16. UKRAINE: FROM AUTHORITARIANISM TO REPUBLIC

ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: by Mykola Rubanets, for UP
Original article in Ukrainian, translated by Anna Platonenko
Ukrayinska Pravda (UP), Kyiv, Ukraine,  Saturday, June 9, 2007

When talking about modern history of Ukrainian formation, one may certainly
quote Taras Shevchenko: it is “the poem of the free people”. Indeed, and in
just the same satirical and sarcastic manner. But isn’t that so?

For example, what did the first Ukrainian president, with all due respect
for him and his outstanding service to the country, leave us with? With the
sacramental words: “We have what we have”.

The second president, who promised us to take “the way towards radical
reforms”, over a period of 10 years did not succeed in answering his own
question: “So what are we actually building?”

The third president’s government, with the only exception of the short-term
post-Maidan euphoria, is now turning into a permanent crisis, which
threatens to utterly ruin the country.

The only thing left to do is to pray to God that we never again face the
“epoch of Ruin”, which our ancestors had gone through after Bohdan
Khmelnytsky.

What to do?

The first thing Ukrainians really need to do today is to stop crying,
grieving and complaining with or without reason.

By the will of God and owing to the favorable circumstances we have an
independent state. And there are no empires (at least on three of four
sides) willing to tear us to pieces again.

So here lies the answer to the question “what to do?”: to work hard and
build the country. But what kind of country?

                THE GRAVEST SHORTCOMING OF THE 
                             UKRAINIAN CONSTITUTION 
In general, it is the Fundamental Law of the country which is to provide the
answer to such a question. Reading over the Ukrainian Constitution, we find
an attempt to answer the question in Article 5: “Ukraine is a republic”. But
what republic?

However, the text of the article provides no answer to this vitally
important matter of principle. And this is the gravest shortcoming of the
Ukrainian Fundamental Law: there is no concept of Ukraine’s formation as a
republic.

And it is a pity to ascertain that the Ukrainian Constitution looks very
much like a student essay composed of different, often contrary, European
patterns. And that is why this Constitution is so distant from the Ukrainian
reality, being eclectic in its form and declarative in its content.

Thus, in order to change the reality and influence the development of the
country and the society, we need a Constitution completely different both in
its spirit and essence.

Today it is quite obvious that this document is first of all to provide a
clear-cut answer to the question where and which way Ukraine is actually
going.

But Ukraine has not yet gone through the period of transition from Soviet
socialism to typical Western, or European, capitalism. We are somewhere in
the middle of its first stage, which is called the period of primary
accumulation of capital.

That is why the country and its government together with all the law
enforcement agencies, figuratively speaking, cannot even hold back the packs
of ‘privatizers’ from unlawful actions, seizure and plunder of property
accumulated by the previous generations of the Ukrainian people.

Because all the executive power is exercised by the officials, many of which
will sell their own mother for a bribe. And almost every week we face
murders of entrepreneurs, corporate raiders etc.

Markets and spheres of influence are being constantly redistributed. A major
part of the economy, power and social life finds itself under the influence
of behind-the-scenes activities and agreements or even under the control of
criminals.

From this point of view one can clearly see why Ukraine is worlds apart from
the democracy as a system of power and social order, where the law and
certain norms of public order and moral values prevail.

We should therefore clearly understand that what we really need during this
period is a very strong power which would restrain and control. And it can
only be a state with a firm power structure, appropriate regulatory and
punitive agencies.

Towards the democracy or back to authoritarianism?

Taking all these circumstances into account, the author at the same time
does not share the opinion that Ukraine needs dictatorship or
authoritarianism. If we long to be a part of Europe again, we need, despite
all our misfortunes and difficult tasks, to form the democratic republic.

But this is where the most essential question arises: what republic?

It is generally known that a republic can be presidential, parliamentary or
their combination: either presidential-parliamentary or vice versa. These
forms appear as a result of a long evolutionary process, social revolutions
or sweeping socio-political reforms.

Ukraine faced neither of the three. All the hopes and expectations that
after Maidan the new ‘orange’ government would rapidly take us away from
Kuchma’s authoritarianism towards a democratic republic of European design,
have vanished into thin air.

By the way, in recent years there has been a great deal of talk, especially
after several discussions as to the implementation of the political reform,
about the search of a new form of democratic republic.

However, the so-called step-by-step and partial implementation of this
reform has only unbalanced and weakened the government and the country

as a whole. The visual proof of this is the present political crisis.
                      UKRAINE IS NOT A REPUBLIC YET
So what is the democratic republic that we should actually strive for? It is
a republican form of government that, in contrast to authoritarianism,
provides for a certain minimum of democracy.

And the latter is grounded on at least two principles: the electivity of
representative and executive power at all levels by the people, which in its
turn means the accountability and submission of government bodies to
appropriate communities.

It also implies drawing up the state budget on a ‘top down’ principle,
provided that this budget should also be controlled by the people at every
possible level.

And this is what the concept “republic” means.

In other words, it implies that both the local and central authorities are
elected and controlled by the citizens themselves, by their communities and,
finally, by the people, i.e. the political nation.

So what do we actually have in Ukraine?

In accordance with the Article 118 of the Constitution of Ukraine, “the
executive power in oblasts, districts, and in the Cities of Kyiv and
Sevastopol is exercised by local state administrations”.

Are these administrations or at least their heads elected by the Ukrainian
people? For this is exactly where the democratic process starts.

The answer is no. This very article further reads: “The composition of local
state administrations is formed by heads of local state administrations.
Heads of local state administrations are appointed to office and dismissed
from office by the President of Ukraine upon the submission of the Cabinet
of Ministers of Ukraine”.

We may therefore conclude that Article 118 of the Fundamental Law of Ukraine
completely runs counter to and eliminates paragraph 1 of Article 5 which
states that Ukraine is a republic.

So what political system do we have in Ukraine after all? All the systems,
in which the executive power is appointed from above, are authoritarian.
That is to say, it is the first reason why Ukraine should be referred to as
a country with the authoritarian government.

The same thing with the state budget: it is not drawn up and implemented on
a ‘top down’ principle, and is not controlled by the people of Ukraine. Only
the local state administrations of Kyiv and Sevastopol are entitled to take
charge of the local budgets.

Of course, somebody may object to this and say that there is a large number
of articles in the Constitution which read that “Ukraine is a sovereign and
independent, democratic, social, law-based state” (Article 1), that “in
Ukraine, local self-government is recognised and guaranteed” (Article 7)
etc.

Moreover, there is a whole chapter dedicated to local self-government –
Chapter XI (Articles 140-146). Yes, it does exist, but, as they say, only on
paper.

And what do we have? The answer to this question, after 16 years of
Ukrainian independence, is now quite obvious to us all: there is neither
democracy nor local self-government, nor republic as such in our country.
                                          WHAT NEXT?
The first answer to this question should be as follows: all the reforms in
Ukraine are to reach their logical completion, i.e. the establishment of
democratic republic.

In order to achieve this, it will not be enough to introduce several
amendments to the Fundamental Law. The Constitution should base itself
on a new concept, the main task and essence of which lie in the need for
replacement of the authoritarian form of government with a democratic,
republican one.

Thus we should first of all determine what republic we will actually have:
presidential (like in the US), parliamentary (Germany) or semi-presidential
(France).

Taking into account that for 15 years Ukraine has been developing as a
presidential-parliamentary republic and that the period of transition is not
yet over, it is too early and even too harmful for the country to break the
presidential power structure.

Thus after the local self-governments have been established, the
Presidential Administration should not be abolished but rather be vested
with governmental, supervisory and control functions.

All these issues can be settled and regulated by the Constitution if it
contains a detailed model of presidential-parliamentary republic.

And in order to emphasize and secure the democratic order of this republic,
in which all the authority throughout the regions belongs to the citizens
and their communities, and in the country – to the people, it would be quite
reasonable to reflect all this in the name of our country.

The author believes that the most appropriate alternative to this name would
be the one given by our predecessors, but, however, not yet implemented –
Ukrainian People’s Republic.

The project of such a republic would be the best way out of the current
crisis and would show us the means for further development of our country.

In conclusion, let us note that owing to the project of the modern Ukrainian
People’s Republic, which is to be the contents and essence of the new
Constitution of Ukraine, we will not only be able to cut the Gordian knot of
problems connected with the government, but also be able to create a new
conceptual basis for dealing with the outdated reforms, such as
administrative, territorial, budgetary, tax, local self-government reform,
the reform of the housing and communal services.

Only when these reforms are carried out as a whole will it then be possible
for Ukraine to develop as a civilized European state with high levels of
democracy and high standards of people’s welfare, worthy of the XXI century.
—————————————————————————————————
LINK: http://www2.pravda.com.ua/en/news/2007/6/9/8024.htm
————————————————————————————————–

[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
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17. UKRAINE: YUSHCHENKO MADE MORE ROOM FOR MANEUVER.
                                  TWO POSSIBLE SCENARIOS

ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: by Viktor Chyvokunya, UP
Original article in Ukrainian, Translated by Eugene Ivantsov
Ukrayinska Pravda, Kyiv, Ukraine, Saturday, June 9, 2007

Ukrainian politics acquired new traditions. For instance, Mr. Piskun with a
ridiculous redundancy is appointed and then discharged, the Central Election
Commission is dissolved and then formed again and President Yushchenko
issues and cancels his decrees to call an early election.

On Tuesday the president made a step which his opponents awaited with
sarcasm and his allies with a hope. Mr. Yushchenko issued the third decree
to call an early election. This time he set a new election date – September
30.

Presidential decree is based on the night negotiations with Mr. Yanukovych
and Mr. Moroz and resignation of over 150 MPs which made the Verkhovna
Rada invalid.

According to Ukrayinska Pravda sources, President Yushchenko attracted four
ex-judges of the Constitutional Court to working out of the document. Even
Vasyl Nimchenko who is representative of the government in the
Constitutional Court supported the document.

However, the Party of Regions was most probably ignorant of this fact.
Having learnt about the third decree, Mr. Yanukovych’s brothers-in-arms
stated they would collect signatures for a new appeal to the Constitutional
Court.

But this time Mr. Yanukovych’s team is in a more difficult situation.

Already on October 17, 2002, the Constitutional Court created pre-conditions
for the third presidential decree.

Back then, the Constitutional Court interpreted Article 82 of the
Constitution in the following way: The Verkhovna Rada is valid if two third
of its constitutional staff is elected.

The Constitutional Court stated that this provision is the condition for
validity of the Verkhovna Rada during the entire convocation period and
cannot be viewed as the reason for opening its first session.

In fact, the Constitutional Court gave the answer to the question that
bothered MPs from the Party of Regions on Monday.

Meanwhile, Oleksandr Moroz stated that until the CEC accepts resignation
of 151 MPs parliament will keep working.

This Moroz’s idea to engage the CEC contradicts the Constitution which
clearly states “that “powers of a people’s deputy are terminated when a
people’s deputy leaves the parliamentary faction.”

The Law on Election was written in such a way that the final decision had to
be adopted by party congresses.

Besides, Mr. Moroz’s another demand was conformation by the CEC that
there was no substitution for the lawmakers who had resigned.

Additional guarantees from the CEC shows Oleksandr Moroz’s interest.
Socialist leader knows what he is doing: having charged the CEC with this
matter, the speaker delays an early election.

None of the sides has majority in the CEC, thus, it will be impossible to
make any decision.
                                         SCENARIO 1
Imagine that 151 MP left their parliamentary factions which resulted in
termination of their powers of people’s deputies.

In this case the coalition will have a hard time. The same decision of the
Constitutional Court dated October 17, 2002 contains another fatal norm: “In
case the Verkhovna Rada staff is decreased to less than 300 MPs, powers of
the Verkhovna Rada must be terminated until the sufficient number of MPs is
elected.”

Thus, following the president’s logic, all sessions of parliament are
nothing but meeting of the hobby groups.

To become legitimate again, the Verkhovna Rada must count 300 MPs. That
means that those who stand below in the party list must take place of the
missing lawmakers.

But this is impossible because BYuT and Our Ukraine started cancellation of
their lists. Although the coalition states that these parties have not
finished this process yet because they were stopped by a legal action, it
does not matter anyway because bringing 151 new MPs to parliament is

decided exclusively by the CEC.

The CEC leadership has enough people loyal to the president to block such an
unfavorable course of events.

Also, Mr. Kinakh’s people will demand to bring their MPs to parliament with
will cause counter actions if Our Ukraine insists on cancellation of the
entire list.

In such a case, during legal procedures the CEC cannot adopt any decisions
on this matter.

Delays play into Mr. Yushchenko’s hands since without the CEC decision it
will be impossible to bring new MPs to parliament.

Without these MPs the coalition can keep gathering in the Verkhovna Rada
building but these meetings will be not considered plenary sessions, taking
into account decision of the Constitutional Court.

When 30 days pass Mr. Yushchenko will have the fourth reason to call an
early election – now the Verkhovna Rada cannot begin plenary sessions during
30 days of one session.

Thus, the circle closes up

It is interesting that Volodymyr Shapoval who is Mr. Yushchenko’s ally and
current head of the CEC is the chairman judge in the case that will declare
the Verkhovna Rada legitimate only if it counts 300 MPs.

If the coalition dares to dispute the third decree in the Constitutional
Court the blue-and-white will appear in uncertainty again.

The second attempt to pressure Mr. Yushchenko with the help of the
Constitutional Court failed. As the president cancelled his decree dated
April 26, one can dump the corresponding draft resolution worked out by the
Communist member of the Constitutional Court which declares this decree
illegitimate.

Hearings regarding Mr. Yushchenko’s new decree will start from the very
beginning. The Court will start with appointing the chairman judge. Even if
he will be loyal to the coalition the Constitutional Court still has a big
problem – one day it has quorum, the next day it has not.

For example, on Thursday there was no quorum because Acting Head of the
Court Valeriy Pshenychny was not at work due to personal reasons, and
Susanna Stanik was supposedly on vacation.

Election of the Constitutional Court chairman can become another apple of
discord. As known, this position became vacant after voluntary resignation
of Ivan Dombrovsky. According to some information, he may try to be renewed
in this office.

Due to Mr. Pshenychny’s absence Mr. Dombrovsky actually chairs the Court
again. As the oldest judge he become acting head of the court.
                                         SCENARIO 2
The opposition will be in a very difficult situation if they do not have 151
MPs who will be ready to resign and publicly announce their decision.

At first, the Orange stated they had 171 MPs. As of Friday, they received
confirmation from 97 BYuT MPs and 60 MPs from Our Ukraine which totals

157 lawmakers.

However, Party of Regions MP Vasyl Khara told Ukrayinska Pravda that Our
Ukraine member Yuriy Artemchenko and another four MPs recalled their
resignations.

During the day Ukrayinska Pravda tried to contact Yuriy Artemchenko but his
aid told he was on a sick leave and refused to talk over the phone.

Mr. Artemchenko’s refusal does not seem surprising, taking into account his
friendly relations with Russian businessman Konstantin Grigirishyn. The
latter wages a war against Ihor Kolomoisky who is Mr. Yushchenko’s favorite
now.

Mr. Artemchenko is also close to Petro Poroshenko who is in disgrace with
today’s top-management of Our Ukraine.

Besides, the coalition paid attention to the fact that MP Volodymyr
Stretovych refused to comply with Our Ukraine decision to recognize
parliament illegitimate.

On Monday he came to the coordinative council chaired by Oleksandr Moroz
which contradicted official position of the BYuT and Our Ukraine as they
believed the Verkhovna Rada had become illegitimate on Saturday.

Some sources claim that parts of statements are doubtful. Certain
resignations are signed not by MPs but by their aids.

Yulia Tymoshenko’s step proves that the statements are not OK. Ukrayinska
Pravda found out that it was not Yulia Tymoshenko personally who wrote her
resignation.

Many people consider this nuance inessential. However, these people must
have forgotten that in 2000 Mrs. Tymoshenko vacated her seat in parliament.
In 2001 BYuT leader was restored in a deputy status because her statement
was written by somebody else.

Mrs. Tymoshenko is too tactful to hastily submit such a document to the
Verkhovna Rada Secretariat.

All this suggest unfavorable forecast regarding an early election but.

Besides public actions there are hidden factors proving that an early
election is inevitable. Regional branches of the Socialist Party received
thousands leaflets with Yushchenko, Tymoshenko and Lutsenko and an
inscription: “Who poisoned Tsushko? Tsushko was poisoned because he
did not let tanks enter Kyiv.”

Even socialists have accepted the imminent beginning of an election
campaign.                                            -30-
————————————————————————————————
LINK: http://www2.pravda.com.ua/en/news/2007/6/9/8015.htm

————————————————————————————————
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18. UKRAINE’S EURO-ATLANTIC FUTURE: INTERNATIONAL FORUM I
                    Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday-Wednesday June 11-13, 2007

News Release: Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic Future
New York, New York, Kyiv, Ukraine, June 2007

NEW YORK – KYIV – Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic Future: International Forum I

will be held in Kyiv, at the Diplomatic Academy of Ukraine, on June 11-13 2007.

The three-day conference will bring together more than 80 government and
non-governmental representatives from among Ukraine’s neighbors and
partners, including the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany,
the Netherlands, Poland, Russia, the Slovak Republic, Turkey, United Kingdom
and United States.

The forum program consists of eight plenary sessions, eight focus sessions
and two roundtable discussions.

During the first roundtable, Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic future will be examined
from the “Olympian perspective” by renowned foreign policy experts from
Germany, Poland, Russia, Ukraine and the United States. The second
roundtable will ponder Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic future and “the Russian
question.”

During the eight focus sessions, featured speakers, all of diplomatic rank,
will talk about Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic future from the Baltic, Visegrad,
Black Sea, Nordic and Western European perspectives. A separate session

will focus on the energy dimension of Euro-Atlantic integration.

The first four plenary sessions will assess Ukraine’s progress toward
meeting Euro-Atlantic external political standards, internal political
standards, economic standards and security standards.

The remaining four plenary sessions will examine the possible effects of
Euro-Atlantic integration on Ukraine’s diplomacy, politics and society,
economy and security.

The forum’s sponsors include the Embassy of Ukraine to the United States,
American Foreign Policy Council, Center for US-Ukrainian Relations,
Democratic Initiatives Foundation, Diplomatic Academy of Ukraine, Konrad
Adenauer Stiftung, NATO Information Centre/Ukraine, Open World Program

at the Library of Congress, Polish-Ukrainian Cooperative Initiative, The
Atlantic Council of the United States and the US-Ukraine Foundation.

Press accreditation for the event is required due to limited seating. Please
pre-register by June 9, 2007, 1800 PM.

For further information and pre-registration, kindly contact one of the
following individuals:
[1] Stephen Bandera, Forum Media Coordinator, sbandera@gmail.com
[2] Walter Zaryckyj, Forum Program Coordinator, Tele: 1 212 473-0839,

Fax: 1 212 473-0839, e-mail: waz1@nyu.edu or cusur1014@gmail.com
[3] Ilko Kucheriv, Forum Executive Coordinator/UA, Tele: 380 44 234 8046,
Fax: 380 44 581 3317, e-mail: ilko@dif.org.ua
[4] Svyatoslav Pavlyuk, Forum Executive Coordinator/EU,
Tele: 380 44 235 84 10, Fax: 380 44 235 84 11, e-mail: pauci@pauci.kiev.ua
———————————————————————————————–
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19. CONTAMINATED ZONE NEAR CHERNOBYL NUCLEAR
                            PLANT INTRIGUING BIOLOGISTS 
 
The Associated Press, Parishev, Ukraine, Friday, June 8, 2007

PARISHEV, Ukraine – Two decades after an explosion and fire at the

Chernobyl nuclear power plant sent clouds of radioactive particles drifting
over the fields near her home, Maria Urupa says the wilderness is encroaching.

Packs of wolves have eaten two of her dogs, the 73-year-old says, and wild
boar trample through her cornfield. And she says fox, rabbits and snakes
infest the meadows near her tumbledown cottage.

“I’ve seen a lot of wild animals here,” says Urupa, one of about 300 mostly
elderly residents who insist on living in Chernobyl’s contaminated
evacuation zone.

The return of wildlife to the region near the world’s worst nuclear power
accident is an apparent paradox that biologists are trying to measure and
understand.

Many assumed the 1986 meltdown of one reactor, and the release of hundreds
of tons of radioactive material, would turn much of the 1,100-square-mile
evacuated area around Chernobyl into a nuclear dead zone.

It certainly doesn’t look like one today.

Dense forests have reclaimed farm fields and apartment house courtyards.
Residents, visitors and some biologists report seeing wildlife – including
moose and lynx – rarely sighted in the rest of Europe. Birds even nest
inside the cracked concrete sarcophagus shielding the shattered remains of
the reactor.

Wildlife has returned despite radiation levels in much of the evacuated zone
that remain 10 to 100 times higher than background levels, according to a
2005 U.N. report – though they have fallen significantly since the accident,
due to radioactive decay.

Some researchers insist that by halting the destruction of habitat, the
Chernobyl disaster helped wildlife flourish. Others say animals may be
filtering into the zone, but they appear to suffer malformations and other
ills.

Both sides say more research is needed into the long-term health of a
variety of Chernobyl’s wildlife species, as governments around the world
consider switching from fossil fuel plants, blamed for helping drive global
climate change, to nuclear power.

Biologist Robert J. Baker of Texas Tech University was one of the first
Western scientists to report that Chernobyl had become a wildlife haven. He
says the mice and other rodents he has studied at Chernobyl since the early
1990s have shown remarkable tolerance for elevated radiation levels.

But Timothy Mousseau of the University of South Carolina, a biologist who
studies barn swallows at Chernobyl, says that while wild animals have
settled in the area, they have struggled to build new populations.

Far from thriving, he says, a high proportion of the birds he and his
colleagues have examined suffer from radiation-induced sickness and genetic
damage. Survival rates are dramatically lower for those living in the most
contaminated areas.

In explaining their starkly differing views, Baker and Mousseau criticize
each other’s studies as poorly designed.

But their disagreement also reflects a deeper split among biologists who
study the effects of exposure to radiation. Some, like Baker, think
organisms can cope with the destructive effects of radiation up to a point –
beyond which they begin to suffer irreparable damage. Others believe that
even low doses of radiation can trigger cancers and other illnesses.

In the Journal of Mammology in 1996, Baker and his colleagues reported that
the disaster had not reduced either the diversity or abundance of a dozen
species of rodents – including mice, shrews, rats and weasels – near the
Chernobyl plant.

“Our studies show that a dynamic ecosystem is present in even the most
radioactive habitats,” they wrote.

Baker’s group reported sighting red fox, gray wolf, moose, river otter, roe
deer, Russian wild boar and brown hare within a six-mile radius of the
plant – the most heavily contaminated area.

Genetic tests showed Chernobyl’s animals suffered some damage to their DNA,
Baker and his colleagues reported. But they said overall it didn’t seem to
hurt wildlife populations.

“The resulting environment created by the Chernobyl disaster is better for
animals,” Baker told the Associated Press in a phone interview.

Critics point out that Baker’s work has been funded by the U.S. Department
of Energy, which some view as pro-nuclear. Baker defended the government
connection, saying, “We have never been asked to come up with any specific
conclusions, just do honest work.” He also said his work has been
peer-reviewed.

Mousseau and his colleagues have painted a far more pessimistic picture.

In the journal Biology Letters in March, a group led by Anders Moller, from
Pierre and Marie Curie University in Paris, said that in a study of 7,700
birds examined since 1991 they found 11 rare or unknown abnormalities in a
population of Chernobyl’s barn swallows.

Roughly one-third of 248 Chernobyl nestlings studied were found to have
ill-formed beaks, albino feathers, bent tail feathers and other
malformations. Mousseau was a co-author of the report.

In other studies, Mousseau – whose work is funded by the National Science
Foundation and National Geographic Society – and his colleagues have found
increased genetic damage, reduced reproductive rates and what he calls
“dramatically” higher mortality rates for birds living near Chernobyl.

The work suggests, he said, that Chernobyl is a “sink” where animals migrate
but rapidly die off. Mousseau suspects that relatively low-level radiation
reduces the level of antioxidants in the blood, which can lead to cell
damage.

“From every rock we turn over, we find consequences,” he told the Associated
Press in a phone interview. “These reports of wildlife flourishing in the
area are completely anecdotal and have no scientific basis.”

While the experts debate, Maria Urupa, harvests tomatoes from her garden,
buys fish from the nearby Pripyat River and brews moonshine vodka.

Eating locally produced food is risky, health experts agree, because plants
and animals can concentrate radioactive materials as they cycle through the
food chain. Does she fear the effects of her exposure to radiation?

 
“Radiation? No!” she said. “What humans do? Yes.”          -30-
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20. PHOTOGRAPHER CAPTURES CHERNOBYL SINCE 1993

Thomas Keating, East Valley Tribune, Phoenix, Arizona, Sat, June 9, 2007

On April 26, 1986, the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant sent a plume of
radioactive fallout drifting over parts of the Soviet Union and Europe in
the most devastating accident in the history of nuclear power.

Large areas of what are now Ukraine, Belarus and Russia were badly polluted,
resulting in the evacuation and resettlement of hundreds of thousands of
people, as well as a bleak future for those contaminated.

Since 1993, Scottsdale photographer Kristina Brendel has been documenting
the devastation of abandoned towns and contaminated areas in the hope that
people won’t overlook what happened 21 years ago.

“People forget,” Brendel said. “There is a new tragedy every day, but the
old hurts remain. Chernobyl came up again last year, during the 20-year
anniversary, making a day or so blip on the news radar. My goal is to make
sure this is not completely forgotten.”

Achieving that goal has been a passion project for Brendel, who never sold
a photo until she arrived near the disaster site in 1992.

Brendel got her first photography job on the visit: She was enlisted to
document the work of a humanitarian group helping with disaster relief in
the Chernobyl area. Fascinated by the sheer desolation, she has traveled
back four times.

Each time, she has gone “into the Zone,” referring to the Zone of
Alienation, the 30-kilometer exclusion area around the site of the Chernobyl
nuclear reactor disaster.

Each time she has taken pictures, capturing the changes to the site over the
years in the hope it will one day get better.

“This project has been my project,” Brendel said. “I take other pictures, I
do other work, but this is the only one that has carried on. And it
continues because the problem is not solved. I don’t have any solutions,
but I am trying to raise awareness.”

Brendel said she has seen some heartbreaking things. Children’s shoes,
scattered and abandoned, representing all of the kids who may have to battle
cancer from the radiation they were exposed to.

Also, the farmers whose lives were torn apart as they were forced to move to
cities and start over. “It’s overwhelming,” Brendel said, “a total vacuum.”

She described the rows of houses that used to be the place where “everything
was supposed to be OK” for these people. “Now everything has fallen down,
a safe haven – gone,” she said.

One of the worries of outsiders entering the Zone is exposure to radiation.
Brendel said a person receives about as much radiation from one day there as
they would encountering an airport X-ray scanner.

“It’s only those who spend long periods of time near the heavy radiation
point who are the ones in danger of long-term effects,” she said.

In April, during the 21st anniversary of the Chernobyl accident, Brendel’s
exhibition of black-and-white photos from inside the Zone joined the
permanent collection of the Chernobyl Museum in Kiev, Ukraine.

Her work has already toured Belarus – the former Soviet state hit hardest by
the disaster – because it lay in the path of the wind in the week after the
reactor exploded.

Brendel was invited by the Belarusian Museum of Modern Art to exhibit her
collection as its featured artist during the 20th anniversary commemoration
of Chernobyl last April.

On top of this, a trilingual book featuring Brendel’s photo exhibition has
been published in Minsk, the capital of Belarus, where she has an apartment
on Karl Marx Street.

But Brendel is not satisfied with her recent success. In July, she will
return to the site, and yet again, go into the Zone. Knowing that children
are being exposed every day to radiation, Brendel has been inspired to keep
working.

When she opened her exhibit at the Chernobyl Museum in Kiev, a choir made up
entirely of people who had been evacuated from the contaminated areas sang
at the opening. “I heard that they were coming, but when I saw them, I was
surprised at how young they were,” she said.

Brendel said she hopes her work will have a lasting effect in helping to
solve the dilemma that the surrounding contaminated areas still face to this
day.

“It ruined the lives of hundreds of thousands of people, and they’re still
around,” she said. “Everyone has a chance to rebuild.”          -30-
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http://www.eastvalleytribune.com/story/91268?source=rss&dest=STY-91268
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21. “ORANGE” DRAINS COLOR FROM REAL-LIFE UKRAINE DRAMA

 
Frank Scheck, Reuters/Hollywood Reporter, New York, NY, Fri, Jun 8, 2007 
 
NEW YORK – Potentially fascinating subject matter receives awkward
treatment in Andrei Zagdansky’s documentary about the 2004 presidential
election in Ukraine and the so-called “Orange Revolution” that followed the
disputed results.

Despite such dramatic elements as the near-fatal poisoning of the one of the
candidates and a censored television broadcaster surreptitiously revealing
the truth via sign language for the deaf, “Orange Winter” is strangely
tedious. The film recently received its U.S. theatrical premiere at New
York’s Pioneer Theater.

Even American audiences nonversed in Ukrainian politics will no doubt recall
the poisoning of candidate Viktor Yushchenko with dioxin, resulting in his
severe facial scarring.

The pro-Western opponent of the government-supported Viktor Yanukovich

(the outgoing president, fearful of being brought up on corruption charges,
wanted a hand-picked successor), he was defeated in an election that was
universally seen as corrupt.

For the next two weeks, citizens took to the streets in mass demonstrations,
adopting the color orange as a show of support for the defeated candidate.
Their efforts resulted in a recount that got Yushchenko installed in office.

Unfortunately, the innate drama of the events is diluted here by the
filmmaker’s unimaginative approach and the droning narration.

Even running a scant 72 minutes, the film is unnecessarily padded, to less
than relevant effect, with extensive clips from the classic silent film
“Earth” and scenes from operas that were performed in the city during the
events in question.                                    -30-

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LINK: http://www.reuters.com/article/filmNews/idUSN0826582720070608
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22.                       SCHOOL OF HATRED
                                  Galaciaphobia: Myths and Facts

By Oleh BAHAM, an expert at the Mohyla School of Journalism
The Day Weekly Digest, Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, June 5, 2007

In the past few years, approximately since the time of the Ukraine without
Kuchma action of 2001, some Ukrainian and Russian mass media have
started waging another vigorous anti-Galician campaign.

The first campaign of this kind took place in 1989-94, when Galicia
(Halychyna) was the hub of the national renaissance and state-building
movement.

In both cases, this is an aggressive reaction of the Muscophile and “Little
Russian” segments of Ukrainian society. In both cases, it is a revival of
old Russian stereotypes and myths that portray Galicians and Galicia as
something totally alien to Ukraine, hostile, destructive,
“bourgeois-nationalistic,” etc.

In reality, both then and now Galicia is a status symbol of the entire
Ukrainian national movement that Moscow has always feared as something that
can thwart its imperial ambitions and claims. Demonizing Galicia has always
sought to present the Ukrainian movement as marginal, pathological, and
menacing.

There are two main factors behind today’s mounting anti-Galician campaign.

First, the Party of Regions is trying to reinforce its external propaganda
by reanimating old Soviet anti-Ukrainian myths and slogans, like “Down with
fascist henchmen” and “No to bourgeois nationalism,” although these two
slogans are complete nonsense from the standpoint of historical truth and
national logic.

Second, the past few years (since Vladimir Putin came to power in Russia)
have seen fierce geopolitical and strategic competition for Ukraine, in
which the national weakening of our state occupies by far the most crucial
place.

While the Party of Regions uses anti-Galician (read: anti-Ukrainian)
propaganda mostly for tactical purposes, trying to whip up emotions and
enlist the support of the Russian and Russified residents of Easternern and
southern Ukraine, whose mentality is still full of anti-Ukrainian
stereotypes, Moscow has embarked on an anti-Galician crusade with the
strategic goal to split Ukraine regionally and weaken it through internal
conflict.

Anti-Galician stereotypes in Ukraine have other, deeper, roots. First of
all, the nation spent a long time under the leveling pressure of the Russian
Empire, a well-run “melting pot” that generated a specific phenomenon
known as the “Ukrainian Little Russian mentality” (or “Creole mentality,”
according to Mykola Riabchuk).

Today, outright rejection of Galicia’s social traditions has formed within a
considerable part of Ukrainian society – the dominant part, which has a
powerful impact on the shaping of current government policies, cultural and
social values, and which remains under the protracted mental, ideological,
and cultural influence of Russia.

This is the reason why there are secret instructions against Galicians and
all things Galician, such as the hounding of Galician politicians, freezing
of economic and business contacts with the region, and tendentious
misinformation, while the central media, not to mention those in Eastern
and southern Ukraine, mostly report negative or, at best, neutral but never
positive, information about Galicia. This creates the overall impression of
an area described as being “almost totally depressed,” “backward,” and
“hopelessly provincial.”

On the one hand, this is an objective phenomenon because the difference
between Creole-type consciousness (post-imperial,
inferiority-complex-ridden) and Galician (nation-centered, civic) is too
great for such a hidden conflict not to exist. On the other hand, it carries
within it the clear threat of a split in the nation.

The press, academic publications, and television have featured so many
anti-Galician materials in the past few years that it would take a separate
monograph to review them. So I will try to analyze only the main, most
deeply rooted, and rabble-rousing stereotypes that distort Galicia’s image
and essence in Ukraine’s informational, political, and cultural space.

Since they are mostly rooted in the traditions of Russian great-power
imperialist ideology, they require historical and scholarly analysis. Let us
look at Galicia as a distinct phenomenon of culture and mentality.

 
The chief stereotypes in the negative assessment and perception of Galicia
are as follows:

1) In terms of civilization and mentality, Galicia is alien to and dangerous
to the Eastern Slavic (read: Russian) civilization and culture and,
therefore, Ukraine itself.

2) Galicia has always been part of the Church Union; it is too open to the
West and thus has a corrosive effect on the Eastern Slavic Orthodox
civilization.

3) Galicia and Galicians were excessively spoiled by Polish culture and thus
are utterly alien to the rest of Ukraine.

4) In the 19th century Galicia became an oasis, a “laboratory” of sorts, of
the modern Ukrainian nation, and it “infected” the rest of Ukraine with
nationalism, thus breaking the “sacred” unity of the Russian and Ukrainian
peoples.

5) In the last quarter of the 19th and the early 20th century Galicia
stemmed the Muscophile movement, the ideology and policy of the “true
champions of fraternal Slavic unity,” which dealt an irreparable blow to the
monolithic Eastern Slavic union.

6) Galician writers and cultural figures exerted a negative influence on the
new Ukrainian culture, “befouled” the Ukrainian language with foreign
Galician dialects and “incongruous” esthetic components.

7) During the interwar period and World War Two, Galicians formed the
OUN-UPA, a very “aggressive bourgeois nationalist movement” that
collaborated with the German occupiers, relentlessly fought against the
USSR, and thus won the dubious distinction of being “traitors” and
“fratricides.”

8) Having been affected with the above-mentioned “poisons” – Middle European
(Austro-Hungarian) and Polish spirit, the Church Union, nationalism, and a
categorical anti-Moscow stance – Galicia preserved its traditions and
identity even in the Soviet era; it did not bow to Moscow and was not
mentally Russified; instead, it strengthened, becoming a kind “Carpathian
Croatia,” an eternal bulwark and enemy of the Orthodox Eastern Slavic world
(even though the latter took the form of an atheistic and communist USSR).

Let us now elucidate the causes and ideological foundations of the
anti-Galician stereotypes in the same sequence:

1. True, in terms of mentality and civilization, Galicia posed a threat to
the “Eastern Slavic civilization,” but only in the sense that this kind of
civilization does not exist.

The fake vision of this civilization emerged in the imperial ideology of the
19th-century Russian Slavophiles (Ivan Kireevsky, Aleksei Khomiakov,
Konstantin Aksakov, Nikolai Danilevsky, et al) who tried to substantiate the
right of Russia to own Middle Europe (from Poland to the Balkans) and
developed the idea of “Moscow as the Third Rome” with its claims to being
“the only center of Orthodoxy” and the right to fight for Constantinople
(Istanbul), i.e., the right to pursue an aggressive foreign policy.

That this required the complete assimilation of the empire’s two other great
Slavic peoples – the Ukrainians and Belarusians – was a foregone conclusion.

This is why the imperial doctrine did not show any greater contempt and
disgust for anybody but these two – allegedly “fraternal” – peoples, for
they “disturbed” the empire’s internal unity. In reality, the “Eastern
Slavic civilization,” i.e., Kyivan Rus’, a superpower that was united for a
short time by the Varangians (the Normans, who established several states in
Europe through conquest), disintegrated in the 12th century, when three
large geopolitical centers – the Polotsk Principality, the Novhorod Land,
and the Volodymyr-Suzdal Principality – seceded, one by one, from the
central Kyivan Principality.

This was a natural fact in all the three main dimensions – geopolitical,
national, and mental/civilizational. The Baltic geopolitical circle “drew
away” Polotsk and Novhorod. The Great Eastern European Plain became
the cradle of the future Muscovite Principality, while the Black Sea coastal
area shaped the future space of Ukraine.

In ethnological terms, the Belarusians (Polochans and Dregoviches) were a
symbiosis of Baltic and Slavic ethnoses, the Novhorod people were a mixture
of Balts, Veneds, Slovens, and proto-Finns, the Muscovites were a union of
Slavs and various Finno- Ugric peoples, and the Ukrainians were a symbiosis
of Slavs and Sarmatian Scythians.

In the dimension of mentality and civilization, Polotsk and Novhorod
experienced a strong cultural influence of the Baltic macroregion and
Scandinavia; Muscovy – Turkic nomads; and Ukraine – the Mediterranean
(Byzantine Empire) and Central Europe (the Balkans, Hungary, and Poland).

The differences between Muscovy, Ukraine, and Belarus became especially
evident in the 14th-17th centuries, when the latter two were part of the
Grand Duchy of Lithuania and the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth.

It was the time when Ukraine and Belarus experienced the powerful influence
of Catholicism, the ideas of the Renaissance, and Baroque culture. The
nobility formed its own ethics, a specific moral code based on the Western
aristocratic and knightly spirit.

Urban culture was on the rise: cities were granted the Magdeburg Law.
Muscovy could not endure this. Although the closeness of the three Eastern
Slavic languages was preserved, this was due to the great role of the Old
Church Slavonic spiritual, cultural, and written-language tradition rather
than to some mystic affinity among these peoples.

Closeness of languages that have a great cultural tradition is a typical
phenomenon in world history. For example, the Romance languages (Italian,
Spanish, Portuguese, French, and Romanian) are very closely related, and
Arabic is a common language for very different peoples from Morocco to
the Persian Gulf, and so on.

The problem of both Belarus and Ukraine was that, after they were annexed
by Russia in the 18th century, Moscow relentlessly destroyed all these
socio-cultural and spiritual traditions and forcibly imposed the Russian
language and culture on them.

In this space, Galicia (along with Transcarpathia and Bukovyna) remained the
only island free of coercive Russian “influences,” above all, because it
became part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire in 1772. This is why its
civilizational and psychological difference from the rest of the gigantic
Russified space is so pronounced.

But this natural distinction fully corresponds with the social structure,
culture, and spirituality of Central Europe – the world between the Baltics
and the Balkans, between the Alps and the Black Sea. The roots of this world
are hidden in the depths of people’s hearts, so all kinds of differences in
Belarusians and Ukrainians continued to emerge whenever Russian pressure
eased.

2. The second myth concerns the “accursed” Church Union of Galicia. Indeed,
the assessment of and attitude to the Union have a mystical, superstitious,
and fanatical nature in Russia. The reason is that Moscow embraced too
sincerely and blindly the teachings of Greek fugitives about its exclusive
“mission” in saving the Orthodox world from the “Latinizers” and “infidels.”

This geopolitical role dovetailed perfectly with the idea of the “Third
Rome,” i.e., the strategy of establishing a pivotal imperial political
Eurasian center in Moscow. This why Russia has always considered the Union
as the most perfidious and effective blow to the unity and strength of the
Orthodox world.

Thus, all things related to the Union were literally demonized and
interpreted as a “sacrilege” and mystical “crime” against the spiritual
foundations of Orthodoxy. Meanwhile, what was ignored was the fact that the
Church Union was a natural phenomenon for all Central European peoples
because it proceeded from their psychological and philosophical background
and the principle of openness to West and East.

As long ago as the 12th century, the princely and boiar elite of Kyivan Rus’
adhered to the concept of a dialogue with the Roman Church. The ideology of
the Union ran through the Ukrainian church milieu throughout the 13th-17th
centuries.

The Union of Brest in 1596 was a qualitatively new and strategic step of the
Ukrainian Church to respond to the challenges of history: the church
embraced Western theological schooling, which at the time was of a much
higher quality than the Orthodox one; it opened up to the progressive world
of ideas, synthesized the influences of Renaissance culture (which gave rise
to the phenomenon of Ukrainian Baroque), and at the same time preserved its
own Byzantine rite, customs, liturgy, and language, thereby becoming a
decisive factor of Ukrainian nation building.

Contrary to the Polish political elite’s expectations, the Uniate Church did
not become a “bridge” for converting the Ukrainians and Belarusians to
Catholicism. Instead, it only cemented Ukrainian- Belarusian society and
made it more mobile. The Uniate Church became a truly national church.

Even the fact that this church structurally revived and gradually won a
prevailing position throughout Right-Bank Ukraine after the reign of Bohdan
Khmelnytsky, when the Cossacks essentially destroyed it, shows its special
organizational dynamics and wholesome directions of development.

As early as the 18th century, both Poland and Russia regarded the Uniate
Church as the main threat to their domination in Ukraine and therefore were
bent on destroying it. In the 19th century, and especially between the 20th
century’s two world wars, the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church was not only
a reliable bastion of Ukrainian spirituality and the national idea but also
an active and influential religious structure, which, in terms of clergymen’s
education, level of theological thought, and the influence of high-quality
rites on the proliferation of the true faith in society, was the equal of
the most powerful national churches of Central Europe.

This occurred at a time when the Russian Orthodox Church was the principal
tool and ideologue of the mass-scale denationalization of Ukrainians in the
rest of Ukraine. So the Union could only exert a “bad” and “corruptive”
influence on Ukraine in the sense that it showed the illustrative example of
a dynamic national church as a source of the nation’s increasing
spirituality.

3. The third myth is that Poland “spoiled” Galician. Galicia was as much
“spoiled” by Poland as Slovakia was by Hungary, which dominated this

Slovak nation for over 1,000 years, Bohemia by Germany, Slovenia and
Croatia by Austria, Bulgaria by Turkey, and Ireland by Britain.

In all these cases, centuries- long colonization of these nations indicates
only that they managed not only to resist the pressure of the dominant
nations for such a long time and finally gain their independence, but also
create a distinct culture, strengthen their national character, and preserve
a high level of spirituality and social mobility.

That the conquered nations borrowed some psychological, social, behavioral,
cultural, and linguistic features from the conquerors while preserving their
deeply rooted national particularities and traditions attests to the complex
and multifaceted nature of their ethnic structure rather than their
“inferiority” or “backwardness.” The once enslaved nations are in no way
worse than the former dominant nations in terms of sociopolitical mobility
and creative potential.

In other words, the Polish social and cultural influences that Galicia
experienced could not prevent it from preserving its inner Ukrainian
essence: it managed to resist the extremely powerful assimilationist
pressure of the Poles and harden its national character.

By all accounts, all nations develop in a never-ending, broad dialogue with
each other. Thus, more often than not foreign cultural influences can play a
positive, encouraging, and enriching role. Suffice it to recall the cultural
wealth England that once took from its conquerors, the Franco-Normans,
France from Italy, Spain from the Arabs, etc.

 It is only the blinkered and xenophobic strata of the population that can
regard the spiritual and social interrelations of peoples as “illness,”
“loss,” etc., without seeing in this the great stimulating function of
international existence.

The myth of the Polish “bane” (recall the works of the great imperial
Russian writer Fedor Dostoevsky, in which all the Polish characters are
portrayed as highly demonic enemies of the “Orthodox world” or simply
wretched milksops) gained such high currency in Russia’s imperialistic and
chauvinistic propaganda because Poland, with its extremely developed
culture, dauntless spirit of Catholicism, and brilliant and militant
aristocracy and nobility, was the main obstacle to Russia’s domination over
Central Europe. In other words, the point is not in the “bad” Poles but in
Russia’s imperial pretensions.

4. It is illogical to accuse Galicia of spreading nationalism all over
Ukraine because it was precisely Dnipro Ukraine that offered Galicia the
first and main impetus to national development. Ivan Kotliarevsky, the
Romantic poets, Mykhailo Maksymovych, Taras Shevchenko, Panteleimon
Kulish, Oleksandr Konysky, Ivan Nechui-Levytsky, Mykhailo Drahomanov,
and Mykhailo Hrushevsky were the chief leaders and inspirers of the 19th-
century Galician national renaissance.

In the 20th century, they were joined by Dmytro Dontsov, Viacheslav
Lypynsky, Yevhen Malaniuk, Yurii Lypa, Oleh Olzhych, and others. Galicia
became the center of the national movement only because it was freer within
the framework of the Austrian constitutional monarchy, and there was no
relentless imperial pressure on the part of Russia, allegedly the
Ukrainians’ “greatest Slavic brother.”

By all accounts, the Galicians carried out the nation-forming program, as
did every former conquered and oppressed European nation. The Czechs,
Slovaks, Lithuanians, Estonians, Latvians, Bulgarians, Romanians, and others
have also resorted to the same forms and methods of national mobilization
and cultural renaissance in order to become full-fledged nations.

There was no “wolfish” nationalism in Galicia: its nationalism was as
militant as the repression of the conquerors was aggressive.
         (TO BE CONTINUED IN THE NEXT ISSUE OF THE DAY)
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LINK: http://www.day.kiev.ua/182433/
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                          PUBLISHER AND EDITOR – AUR
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Washington Office, SigmaBleyzer, The Bleyzer Foundation

Emerging Markets Private Equity Investment Group;
President, U.S.-Ukraine Business Council, Washington;
Founder & Trustee, Holodomor Exhibition & Education Collection
P.O. Box 2607, Washington, D.C. 20013, Tel: 202 437 4707
mwilliams@SigmaBleyzer.com; www.SigmaBleyzer.com
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       Power Corrupts and Absolute Power Corrupts Absolutely.
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AUR#852 Jun 11 London Stock Exchange; Pepsi Spends $542 Million; Mittal To Spend $1.5 Billion; How To Avoid A New Cold War; Russian ‘Danger’;

=========================================================
ACTION UKRAINE REPORT – AUR           
                 An International Newsletter, The Latest, Up-To-Date
                     In-Depth Ukrainian News, Analysis and Commentary

                      Ukrainian History, Culture, Arts, Business, Religion,
         Sports, Government, and Politics, in Ukraine and Around the World       

 
             HOW TO AVOID A NEW COLD WAR 
                     By Zbigniew Brzezinski, TIME magazine (Article 12)
                        
ACTION UKRAINE REPORT – AUR – Number 852
Mr. E. Morgan Williams, Publisher and Editor, SigmaBleyzer
KYIV, UKRAINE, MONDAY, JUNE 11, 2007 

               –——-  INDEX OF ARTICLES  ——–
            Clicking on the title of any article takes you directly to the article.               
   Return to the Index by clicking on Return to Index at the end of each article
1. UKRAINE IS COMING TO THE LONDON STOCK EXCHANGE (LSE)
            The Ferrexpo float will be the first full UK listing for a company
                                    from the former Soviet republic.

Jonathan Russell and Iain Dey, Sunday Telegraph
London, United Kingdom, Sunday, June 10, 2007

2.    PEPSIAMERICAS & PEPSICO TO JOINTLY ACQUIRE LEADING
                        JUICE COMPANY SANDORA IN UKRAINE
WebWire, Saturday, June 9, 2007

3.      ARCELOR MITTAL TO INVEST $1.5 BILLION IN UKRAINIAN
                             STEEL MILL IN NEXT FOUR YEARS
Interfax Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine, Sunday, Jun 10, 2007

4. FRENCH FIRMS AXA AND BNP PARIBAS AGREE TO PARTNERSHIP

      IN UKRAINE PROPERTY AND CASUALTY INSURANCE MARKET
By Julia Chan, Banking Business Review
London, United Kingdom, Friday, 8th June 2007

5. 40 UKRAINIAN COMPANIES SHORTLISTED TO BECOME MEMBERS
           OF WEF COMMUNITY OF GLOBAL GROWTH COMPANIES
Ukrainian Times, Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, June 11, 2007

6.   MAJOR GROWTH FOR VOLVO TRUCK DELIVERIES IN UKRAINE
                   Opens large service facilities for Volvo trucks in Odessa
Business-Traveler.EU, Dusseldorf, Germany, Friday, May 25, 2007

7MICROSOFT PUTS ON SALE UKRAINIAN-LANGUAGE WINDOWS
                               VISTA AND OFFICE SYSTEM 2007
Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, May 22, 2007

8.            MCDONALD’S UKRAINE TO INCREASE NUMBER OF

                    RESTAURANTS FROM 57 TO 100 BY  2012-2014 
Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Thursday, May 24, 2007

9.       UKRAINE PHARMACEUTICALS & HEALTHCARE REPORT 
               Provides Independent Forecasts and Competitive Intelligence

                      on Ukraine’s Pharmaceuticals & Healthcare Industry
Business Wire, Dublin, Ireland, Friday, June 1, 2007

        DIGITAL  BROADCASTING FOR ITS SUBSCRIBERS IN THREE
                                KYIV DISTRICTS BY SEPTEMBER
Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Saturday, June 2, 2007

11.         IFC HELPS IDENTIFY OPPORTUNITIES FOR GROWTH
                             IN UKRAINE’S LEASING INDUSTRY
International Finance Corporation (IFC), Kyiv, Ukraine, Fri, June 8, 2007

12.                        HOW TO AVOID A NEW COLD WAR
ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: By Zbigniew Brzezinski
TIME magazine, New York, NY, Thursday, Jun. 07, 2007

13.                        UKRAINE’S UNFULFILLED PROMISE
EDITORIAL: Toledo Blade, Toledo, Ohio, Sunday, June 10, 2007

14.                   UKRAINE HITS OUT AT RUSSIAN ‘DANGER’
By Stefan Wagstyl and Roman Olearchyk
Financial Times, London, UK, Sunday, June 10 2007

15.                UKRAINE: HUMMING, STEAMING HONEYCOMB
                        Economist’s Moscow correspondent tours Ukraine
Correspondent’s Dairy: From Economist.com
London, United Kingdom Friday, Jun 8th 2007

16.           UKRAINE: FROM AUTHORITARIANISM TO REPUBLIC
ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: by Mykola Rubanets, for UP
Original article in Ukrainian, translated by Anna Platonenko
Ukrayinska Pravda (UP), Kyiv, Ukraine,  Saturday, June 9, 2007

17UKRAINE: YUSHCHENKO MADE MORE ROOM FOR MANEUVER.
                                    TWO POSSIBLE SCENARIOS
ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: by Viktor Chyvokunya, UP
Original article in Ukrainian, Translated by Eugene Ivantsov
Ukrayinska Pravda, Kyiv, Ukraine, Saturday, June 9, 2007

18. UKRAINE’S EURO-ATLANTIC FUTURE: INTERNATIONAL FORUM I
                     Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday-Wednesday June 11-13, 2007
News Release: Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic Future
New York, New York, Kyiv, Ukraine, June 2007

19CONTAMINATED ZONE NEAR CHERNOBYL NUCLEAR PLANT
                                      INTRIGUING BIOLOGISTS 

The Associated Press, Parishev, Ukraine, Friday, June 8, 2007

20      PHOTOGRAPHER CAPTURES CHERNOBYL SINCE 1993
Thomas Keating, East Valley Tribune, Phoenix, Arizona, Sat, June 9, 2007

 
Frank Scheck, Reuters/Hollywood Reporter, New York, NY, Fri, Jun 8, 2007 
 
22.                                     SCHOOL OF HATRED
                                    Galaciaphobia: Myths and Facts
By Oleh BAHAM, Expert at the Mohyla School of Journalism
The Day Weekly Digest, Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, June 5, 2007
========================================================
1
UKRAINE IS COMING TO THE LONDON STOCK EXCHANGE (LSE)
            The Ferrexpo float will be the first full UK listing for a company
                                    from the former Soviet republic.

Jonathan Russell and Iain Dey, Sunday Telegraph
London, United Kingdom, Sunday, June 10, 2007

Ferrexpo, a Ukrainian iron ore giant, will this week brave volatile markets
to press ahead with its £1bn-plus flotation on London’s main market. The
float will be the first full UK listing for a company from the former Soviet
republic.

Konstantin Zhevago, the Ukrainian oligarch who owns the company, plans to
raise $500m (£254m) by selling a quarter of his holding. Ferrexpo controls
the world’s fourth-largest iron ore reserves and the biggest deposits in
Europe at its Poltava mine.

JPMorgan Cazenove, the company’s sponsor, has set a price range valuing
Ferrexpo at between $1.4bn and $1.8bn. It will be fixed this Friday and
trading in the shares should start on Monday. “People are interested but
they will try and get it as cheaply as possible,” said one potential
investor.

Shares in world markets tumbled last week on the back of concerns of rising
interest rates. The FTSE100 closed the week 2.6 per cent lower while the
FTSE250 of mid-market stocks experienced its worst week of trading since
May 2002, tumbling by 5 per cent over the five days.

Despite the sharp falls, leading strategists said they remained bullish
about the general state of the economy.

Bernd Meyer, the head of pan-European equity strategy at Deutsche Bank,
said: “We have to differentiate between short term and long term. Our view
of the economy is quite bullish. The current cycle cannot be compared with
anything we have seen in the past 20 years.

“It should be compared with the 1950s and early 1960s when the rebuilding of
the infrastructure in Germany mirrored the current growth in infrastructure
in China. Germany kept its currency low by buying gold just as China is
buying Treasury Bonds now.

“The growth in the 1950s only ended when there was no unemployment in
Germany. In China the World Bank expects the rate of urbanisation to keep
wage inflation under control. The IMF expects global growth to continue at 5
per cent for the next three years. Although there are risks we think it will
be at least five years before inflation becomes an issue.”

Binit Patel, a Goldman Sachs economist, said: “The markets are readjusting
to a new level of yields. Markets have to adjust when interest rates go up.

The big event will be the publication of consumer price index numbers in the
US. It will be a big focus for bond and equity markets. If the news is
fairly benign a lot of tension will come out of the markets. We need to see
pressure coming off interest rates.”

Other companies are also planning to float in the coming weeks. Cardsave, a
supplier of credit card terminals to small retailers, is poised for an £80m
listing on Aim. Fox-Pitt Kelton is expected to begin marketing the company
to investors later this week.

It is looking to raise £40m-£50m of new money, to allow a partial exit for
its private equity backers, RJD Partners. It is understood that the company
believes the turmoil in the markets will not derail the plans, with a
listing planned for the middle of July.

Jim Ormonde, the Cardsave chief executive and a former BBC journalist, is
also trimming his holding, landing a multi-million pound windfall.

In Europe, Shurgard, a storage company, is preparing to float on Euronext
for Euro600m (£408m). The company owns 167 units in seven European

countries, including the UK. Morgan Stanley, Merrill Lynch and Credit
Suisse started marketing on Friday.

Others remain cautious. “Although markets are at an all-time high they are
choppy, and the sentiment for floats is really not there. Large ones are
either being repriced or pulled,” said one senior banker.           -30-
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http://www.telegraph.co.uk/money/main.jhtml?xml=/money/2007/06/10/cnukraine110.xml
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2.     PEPSIAMERICAS & PEPSICO TO JOINTLY ACQUIRE
         LEADING JUICE COMPANY SANDORA IN UKRAINE

WebWire, Saturday, June 9, 2007

PepsiAmericas, Inc. (NYSE: PAS) and PepsiCo (NYSE: PEP) today
announced that they have reached an agreement to jointly acquire 80
percent of Sandora, LLC (“Sandora”), the leading juice company in Ukraine.

 The acquisition, for a total purchase price of $542 million plus assumed
debt, provides PepsiAmericas and PepsiCo a strong platform for growth in
the emerging Ukrainian market.

Ukraine is one of the fastest growing beverage markets in Europe with more
than 46 million consumers. Sandora has established itself as the leader in
the high growth juice category with a range of distinctly positioned brands
that represent approximately half of the total juice volume consumed in
Ukraine.

With over 3,500 employees, Sandora has a powerful sales and distribution
organization and two modern production facilities located in Nikolaev.

“We’re excited to extend our strong partnership with PepsiCo to create a new
model for beverage growth in Ukraine,” said Robert C. Pohlad, Chairman and
Chief Executive Officer of PepsiAmericas. “We have a clear strategy to grow
through the expansion of our international business and Sandora is a great
fit.

It provides immediate scale in a high growth market and a strong business
platform to leverage and expand into other categories. Ukraine’s emerging
economy and beverage market, coupled with Sandora’s strong brands and
distribution capabilities, provide significant growth potential.”

“Our expansion into Ukraine adds another important contiguous market to
our international portfolio, following Romania last year,” said Kenneth E.
Keiser, President and Chief Operating Officer of PepsiAmericas. “This
acquisition will allow us to further leverage our capabilities,
infrastructure and go-to-market system.”

“Sandora’s market-leading brands will be a wonderful addition to our
portfolio,” said Michael White, vice chairman of PepsiCo and chief executive
officer of PepsiCo International. “We look forward to working in partnership
with the Sandora team and to continuing to serve consumers throughout
Ukraine.”

PepsiAmericas and PepsiCo will acquire 80 percent of Sandora through a
new joint venture in which PepsiAmericas will hold a 60 percent interest.

Leveraging the capabilities and experience of the Sandora team,
PepsiAmericas will manage the day-to-day operations of the business, while
PepsiCo will oversee the brand development. The joint venture expects to
acquire the remaining 20 percent interest in Sandora in November 2007.

The transaction, expected to close in the third quarter of 2007, is subject
to customary regulatory approvals. PepsiAmericas will consolidate the joint
venture into its financial results. PepsiCo will recognize the earnings of
the joint venture as equity income in PepsiCo International’s line of
business.

While PepsiAmericas expects the acquisition to be $0.02 to $0.03 dilutive in
2007, PepsiAmericas maintains its full year adjusted earnings per share
outlook of $1.35 to $1.40.

PepsiAmericas expects the transaction to be $0.01 accretive to earnings per
share in 2008. The transaction will have no impact on PepsiCo’s previously
announced earnings per share guidance for 2007.                -30

————————————————————————————————–
AUR FOOTNOTE: Speaking in an interview with Interfax-Ukraine Sandora
confirmed the deal, saying that detailed information would be announced
on June 11.
The man stockholders of Sandora Ltd. are citizens of Lithuania Igor Bezzub
and Raimondas Tumenas, each of whom have a 45% stake, and who in 1995
provided the starting capital to realize a business idea of Serhiy Sypko,
professor of the Mykolaiv shipbuilding plant. At present, Sypko is Sandora’s
director general. He owns a 10% stake in the company.
 
Sandora’s share on Ukraine’s juice market is estimated at 47%.   
———————————————————————————————–
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3.           ARCELOR MITTAL TO INVEST $1.5 BILLION IN
            UKRAINIAN STEEL MILL IN NEXT FOUR YEARS

Interfax Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine, Sunday, Jun 10, 2007

KRYVYI  RIH – The world’s largest steel firm Arcelor  Mittal  is to
invest $1.5 billion in the coming four years in the reconstruction  of
the Mittal  Steel Kryvyi Rih steel mill, the mill’s General Director
Narendra Chaudhary told reporters.

Loans  from  the  European  Bank for Reconstruction and Development
will account  for  a  relatively  small  share in overall investment, he
said.

Under  the  business  plan, $277 million will be put into the steel
mill’s retooling in 2007, he said.

Volodymyr  Sheremet,  the  steel  mill’s production chief, said the
shareholders  planned to build a sinter plant with an annual capacity
of 9 million tonnes.

“Building a sinter plant is tantamount to building an entire mill,”
Sheremet said. The sinter plant currently in operation will be shut
down after the new one is put into operation,” he added.

Mittal  Steel  Kryvyi  Rih,  formerly  Kryvorizhstal,  is Ukraine’s
largest  steel  enterprise  with  an  annual  capacity of over 6 million
tonnes of  rolled  stock,  about  7 million tonnes of steel and over 7.8
million tonnes of pig iron.                             -30-
————————————————————————————————
LINK: http://www.interfax.com/3/281435/news.aspx
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4. FRENCH FIRMS AXA AND BNP PARIBAS AGREE TO PARTNERSHIP
      IN UKRAINE PROPERTY AND CASUALTY INSURANCE MARKET

By Julia Chan, Banking Business Review
London, United Kingdom, Friday, 8th June 2007

LONDON – French insurance giant AXA and French banking group BNP

Paribas have reached an agreement to establish a partnership in the Ukrainian
property and casualty insurance market.

Under the terms of the agreement, AXA will acquire a 50% stake in BNP
Paribas’ insurance subsidiary Ukrainian Insurance Alliance (UIA). The 50%
shareholding will be purchased from BNP Paribas’ subsidiary UkrSibbank.

As a result, AXA will take the management control of the joint company,
which will benefit from an exclusive bancassurance distribution agreement
with UkrSibbank for an initial period of 10 years.

UIA is primarily engaged in selling individual motor and property insurance
through UkrSibbank’s 1,000 branches. In 2006, it more than doubled its
revenues compared to the previous year to $35 million.

This partnership will allow both companies to grow faster in the Ukrainian
property and casualty insurance market.

In addition, UIA will be well positioned to seize the growth prospects of
the Ukrainian market by combining the strength of UkrSibbank’s network
and AXA’s expertise in insurance product development, client service and
claims management.

The transaction is subject to regulatory approvals but is expected to close
by the end of 2007.                                -30-
————————————————————————————————-
http://www.banking-business-review.com/article_news.asp?guid=2E999A7F-8277-41E9-A665-81CF2D30D6FC

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========================================================
5. 40 UKRAINIAN COMPANIES SHORTLISTED TO BECOME MEMBERS
          OF WEF COMMUNITY OF GLOBAL GROWTH COMPANIES

Ukrainian Times, Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, June 11, 2007

Geneva – Forty Ukrainian companies have been shortlisted to become members
of the World Economic Forum’s Community of Global Growth Companies.

A select group of Global Growth Companies such as KINTO, Infocom,

VABank, Ukrainian Cargo Couriers and others have been invited to a private
networking event organized in collaboration with the American Chamber of
Commerce in Ukraine on June 12.

The purpose of this meeting is to discuss the role of this new business
community and, particularly, how Ukrainian companies can benefit from it.

The Community of Global Growth Companies includes companies that: – are
established and expanding outside their traditional boundaries; – experience
growth rates exceeding 15% year-on-year; – have revenues typically between
$100 million and $2 billion; – are proven entrepreneurial companies in the
early stages of going global; – demonstrate strength in a particular niche.

On September 6-8, the World Economic Forum (WEF) will bring together in
Dalian, China, this new generation of companies that will fundamentally
change the global competitive landscape.

These are the Microsofts, Googles, Nestles and Siemens of tomorrow, the
companies, which are yet small compared with today’s multinationals, but
have the potential to join the global top-500 companies within the next
decade.

In this context, Peter Torreele, Managing Director of the World Economic
Forum, sees Ukraine as a country with huge potential for Global Growth
Companies: “Ukraine, being one of the largest countries in Europe, with
tremendous industrial and intellectual potential, will definitely advance
its position in the global markets in the nearest future.

I see Ukrainian Global Growth Companies as a locomotive for this process;
these companies will demand access to the global business community,
international networking and strategic insights on foreign markets. I hope
that our new initiative will be the optimal solution for them.”
————————————————————————————————

[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
========================================================      
6.  MAJOR GROWTH FOR VOLVO TRUCK DELIVERIES IN UKRAINE
                  Opens large service facilities for Volvo trucks in Odessa

Business-Traveler.EU, Dusseldorf, Germany, Friday, May 25, 2007

In 2006 Volvo truck deliveries increased by 62 percent in the Ukranian
market compared to the previous year, putting Volvo in the lead among
importers of trucks in the Ukraine.

By opening large service facilities in Odessa, Volvo Trucks is taking
long-term steps to further increase its presence in the country.

“Due to the strong economic growth in the region and growing trade between
East and West the need for truck transport is increasing,” says Roger Alm,
director Region East at Volvo Trucks.

“We plan to develop our presence in the Ukraine and chose to locate our new
Truck Center in Odessa. We believe it will be an important business region
and serve as a hub for transportation between East and West.”

With the new Truck Center, Volvo Trucks is now in a position to offer its
customers in the Odessa region total transport solutions including workshop
and financial services, as well as sales of trucks and spare parts.

Volvo Trucks has operated in the Ukraine since 1996 and has one wholly-owned
Volvo Truck Center in Kiev as well as five workshops in its dealer network.
——————————————————————————————————-
http://www.business-traveler.eu/nachrichten/6921/Major-growth-for-Volvo-Trucks-in-the-Ukraine.html
———————————————————————————————————
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7.    MICROSOFT PUTS ON SALE UKRAINIAN-LANGUAGE

                WINDOWS VISTA AND OFFICE SYSTEM 2007 

Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, May 22, 2007

KYIV – Microsoft Corporation has introduced its Ukrainian-language Windows
Vista operating system and Office System 2007 software to the Ukrainian
market. Microsoft Ukraine director general Valerii Lanovenko announced this
at a press conference.

He said the process of localization of these products started almost two
years and a half ago, and there has been some difficulties in translation as
350 new terms are in use in the new products in all.

‘On the one hand, sometimes the notions simply do not exist in Ukrainian,
sometimes they do, but cannot be used in the IT industry in relation to IT
tasks.

Besides the need to choose the required term that suits some particular
function or situation best of all, the task, of course, was to retain the
original sense of the code itself and messages viewed by users,’ Lanovenko
said.

The Ukrainian and Russian version of the products are offered at the same
price and, as Microsoft Ukraine product marketing manager Yurii Pederii
said, at the moment the products are available in the network of the company
partners and will appear in retail sale within a month.

Lanovenko noted that Ukrainian-language products will be at first more
popular with the government agencies and education establishments.

During the process of product localization, the corporation has been in
cooperation with the Ukrainian government agencies in charge of terminology,
and representatives of the Ukrainian academic sector, which in the end
allowed for building a unified database of terms.

The working group that translated and adjusted Windows Vista Office System
2007 consisted of representatives of the Microsoft office in Ukraine and the
company head office, several contractors and government organizations.

Volodymyr Sharov, head of the Intel representative office, said Intel
products on the basis of Intel Core micro-architecture and Windows Vista
operating system were released nearly at the same time.

With the advent of the localized version of Windows Vista and Office System
2007, Ukrainian users can obtain up-to-date systems on the basis of Intel
Core 2 Duo processors which will fully change their idea of interface,
digital entertainment technologies and multi-task operation capacities.

Volodymyr Bolotnykov, marketing manager at IT Samsung Electronics Ukraine,
said that his corporation began the production of new line-up of notebooks
in line with recent market trends.

‘Besides the powerful Intel Core 2 Duo processor, notebooks have ATI Radeon
Xpress 1250 graphic cards of new generation and work properly under the
guidance of Windows Vista Premium operating system,’ Bolotnykov said.

As Ukrainian News earlier reported, Microsoft Corporation put on sale for
private clients in Ukraine its new Windows Vista operation system and Office
System 2007 software on January 30, and on general sale on January 31.
————————————————————————————————–

[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
========================================================
    NOTE: Send in a letter-to-the-editor today. Let us hear from you.
========================================================
8.    MCDONALD’S UKRAINE TO INCREASE NUMBER OF
             RESTAURANTS FROM 57 TO 100 BY 2012-2014 

Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Thursday, May 24, 2007

KYIV – McDonald’s Ukraine company intends to increase number of restaurants
from 57 to 100 by 2012-2014. McDonald’s Ukraine director general Ihor Delov
disclosed this to Ukrainian News. “In 5-7 years, we will increase the number
of restaurants to 100,” he said.

Delov marked that this year, it is planned to open four restaurants, and at
least five in 2008. He said that average cost of opening one McDonald’s
restaurant in Ukraine is about USD 1.5 million.

McDonald’s president for Eastern Europe Khamzat Khazbulatov said that
currently, the market share of the company is only 50%.

As Ukrainian News earlier reported, in 2007, McDonald’s Ukraine plans to
invest about UAH 38 million into development of its chain.

In 2006, McDonald’s Ukraine opened three restaurants in Kyiv, Lviv and
Dnipropetrovsk. Currently, McDonald’s Ukraine chain consists of 57
restaurants in 16 large cities. McDonald’s has worked in Ukraine since 1997
and is the world’s fast food leader.                       -30-

———————————————————————————————–
FOOTNOTE: It seems to me 100 restaurants was the same goal that
was announced by McDonald’s in 1997 when they opened in Ukraine
and the goal to open 100 restaurants was, I think, in 10 years or less. 
If this is correct then McDonald’s is behind their original projections. 
I attended the opening of the first two McDonald’s in Kyiv in 1997. 
AUR EDITOR
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[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
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9. UKRAINE PHARMACEUTICALS & HEALTHCARE REPORT 
                Provides Independent Forecasts and Competitive Intelligence
                      on Ukraine’s Pharmaceuticals & Healthcare Industry
 
Business Wire, Dublin, Ireland, Friday, June 1, 2007

DUBLIN, Ireland – Research and Markets has announced the addition of
“Ukraine Pharmaceuticals & Healthcare Report Q4 2006” to their offering.

Ukraine’s pharmaceutical market continues to grow rapidly in value terms.
Estimates by Russian market research agency RMBC indicate that Ukraine’s
packaged pharmaceutical market grew 18% year-on-year (y-o-y) over the first
nine months of 2006. BMI predicts that the Ukrainian market will reach a
total retail value of US$1.94bn in 2006, growing to US$2.49bn by 2010.

The compound annual growth rate for the market is forecasted at 9.4% for the
period 2005 to 2010, making Ukraine one of the fastest growing markets in
Central and Eastern Europe.

Still, strong recent growth has failed to attract much direct investment in
the production sector as multinationals have preferred to invest in
production in the larger and comparatively more stable Russian market to the
east.

Despite impressive market growth, the year 2006 also served to justify the
hesitation of investors in the pharmaceutical and broader healthcare sector
in Ukraine. The country’s government was essentially paralysed from mid-2005
to mid-2006, with President Viktor Yushchenko unable to force through a
working government until August.

With a cabinet headed by Yushchenko’s former arch rival and Party of Regions
chief Viktor Yanukovich, the government seemed to creep back to life for
much of Q406, only to descend again into conflict in December.

The result of this instability has been reflected in the pharmaceutical
market, where a number of decrees have been promulgated and plans

announced only for deadlines to slip and implementation postponed.

One major example is a decree published by the previous caretaker government
at the beginning of 2006 that called for a ‘Plan of Development’ for the
domestic pharmaceuticals industry. There is little sign that this plan has been
implemented, and it is not even clear if it still exists as a roadmap.
         LARGE SCALE FOREIGN INVESTMENT ABSENT
Large scale foreign investment is still notable by its almost complete
absence, however, notwithstanding relatively small investments by companies
such as Bioton (Poland) in insulin maker Indar and a packaging plant built
by Gedeon Richter (Hungary).

Rather, strong market players are leading the consolidation process in the
domestic market with Darnitsa, Arterium and Borshchagovsky topping the
domestic sector.

Foreign players will likely stay on the sidelines, waiting to see if
Ukraine’s economy continues to defy the odds and grow steadily despite

the prospect of further large price hikes on gas imposed by Russia.

Ukraine’s mixed picture translates into a continued 10th place rating among
the 14 CEE major pharmaceutical markets featured in the Q406 Business
Environment Rankings.

Without some clear direction by government aimed at simplifying and
speeding procedures and dealing with corruption and counterfeiting, the
country will remain a secondary market in many ways.  Such robust action
by the government is, however, unlikely in the foreseeable future.

Companies Mentioned:
— Arterium; Gedeon Richter; Krka; Lek (Novartis/Sandoz)

————————————————————————————————–
LINK: http://www.researchandmarkets.com/reports/c58721.
Contact: Research and Markets, Laura Wood, Senior Manager
press@researchandmarkets.com; Fax: +353 1 4100 980
————————————————————————————————–
http://www.pharmalive.com/News/index.cfm?articleid=447384&categoryid=54
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[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
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10. KYIV’S LARGEST CABLE TV OPERATOR VOLIA TO INTRODUCE
        DIGITAL  BROADCASTING FOR ITS SUBSCRIBERS IN THREE
                                KYIV DISTRICTS BY SEPTEMBER

Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Saturday, June 2, 2007

KYIV – The Kyiv largest cable TV operator Volia company intends to

introduce digital broadcasting for its subscribers in Kyiv Obolonskyi,
Kharkivskyi and Troeschynskyi districts instead of analog broadcasting by
September. Volia company president Serhii Boiko disclosed this at a press
conference.

At the same time, the company plans to monthly transfer about 28,000
subscribers from analog broadcasting to digital one.

Boiko has also marked that the level of digital broadcasting penetration is
quite high in those districts.

“These three districts… may have 20% of all subscribers, who use analog

TV broadcasting, all other use digital one,” Boiko said.

As Ukrainian News earlier reported, Volia company provides analogue cable
television broadcasting services under the brand name Volia Cable, digital
television broadcasting services under the brand name Volia Premium TV, and
Internet access via cable networks under the Volia Broadband trademark.

Volia group of companies is owned by the Ukrainian Growth Fund (UGF),
which is managed by SigmaBleyzer international company.            -30-
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11. IFC HELPS IDENTIFY OPPORTUNITIES FOR GROWTH
                        IN UKRAINE’S LEASING INDUSTRY

International Finance Corporation (IFC), Kyiv, Ukraine, Fri, June 8, 2007

KYIV, Ukraine – IFC, the private sector arm of the World Bank Group,
today released the results of a survey on Ukraine’s leasing industry that
highlight growth in the sector and indicate expansion of the nation’s
financial markets.

The survey reveals that challenges remain, including the relatively high
cost of leasing, which prevents some businesses from accessing this option
to upgrade equipment or expand production.

This study is the third annual survey conducted by the IFC Ukraine Leasing
Development Project, with support from the Agency for International
Business and Cooperation, part of the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs.

The results, which assessed performance during the year 2005-2006, are
based on responses from 60 leasing companies.

Findings indicate that demand for leasing services as an alternative
financial instrument has grown significantly in Ukraine:  the total value of
the leasing portfolio expanded by more than 108 percent, while the number
of leasing companies in operation increased by 20 percent.

The leasing industry is stabilizing and supporting an increasing number of
jobs, long-term contracts are on the rise, and industry employment grew 50
percent during the period.

Several factors are contributing to this growth, such as increased interest
in leasing from foreign-owned banks entering the market, growing public
awareness, rapid development of Ukraine’s financial markets, and improved
access to credit.

While the potential for growth remains high, the survey finds that there are
still many obstacles. Issues to be addressed include changes in the tax code
to make leasing a more viable option for businesses, and the absence of
credit bureaus and a well-developed secondary asset market.

At a roundtable discussion to present the findings, Ernst Mehrengs, IFC
Project Manager, said, “Leasing is an effective mechanism for the
replacement of equipment, increasing sales volumes of equipment producers,
encouraging technological progress in the design of equipment, and creating
new employment opportunities.”

Mehrengs noted that the government’s recent effort to amend the national tax
code with incentives for leasing is an additional step in the right
direction. “If the draft of the amended tax code is approved, leasing will
become less expensive for the lessee, thus increasing overall demand for
leasing products and benefiting the overall economy,” he said.
                                            ABOUT IFC
IFC, the private sector arm of the World Bank Group, promotes open and
competitive markets in developing countries.  IFC supports sustainable
private sector companies and other partners in generating productive jobs
and delivering basic services, so that people have opportunities to escape
poverty and improve their lives.

Through FY06, IFC Financial Products has committed more than $56 billion
in funding for private sector investments and mobilized an additional $25
billion in syndications for 3,531 companies in 140 developing countries.

IFC Advisory Services and donor partners have provided more than $1 billion
in program support to build small enterprises, to accelerate private
participation in infrastructure, to improve the business enabling
environment, to increase access to finance, and to strengthen environmental
and social sustainability. For more information, please visit www.ifc.org.
    ABOUT THE DUTCH AGENCY FOR INTERNATIONAL
                         BUSINESS AND COOPERATION
The Agency for International Business and Cooperation is part of the Dutch
Ministry of Economic Affairs.  Its mission is to promote and encourage
international business and international cooperation.

As a government agency and a partner with businesses and public sector
organizations, its goal is to help public and private institutions achieve
success in their international operations.

A growing number of organizations, government institutions, and companies
have come to rely on the agency for information about foreign markets,
governments, and trade and industry. It develops products and services that
meet the needs of its customers and clients.

Information comes from its network of Dutch and international organizations,
which include international finance institutions, the European Commission,
embassies, chambers of commerce, local business support offices, trade
representative associations, and other trade and industry groups.  For more
information, please visit www.evd.nl.

In Moscow: Ilya Sverdlov; Tel +7495-411-7555; E-mail: isverdlov@ifc.org
In Kyiv: Andriy Gulay; Tel +380-44-490-6400; E-mail: agulay@ifc.org
————————————————————————————————–
LINK: http://www.ifc.org/ifcext/media.nsf/content/SelectedPressRelease?OpenDocument&UNID=CB312EE83C8A88A3852572F300696E00
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[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
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12.          HOW TO AVOID A NEW COLD WAR

ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: By Zbigniew Brzezinski
TIME magazine, New York, NY, Thursday, Jun. 07, 2007

America’s relationship with Russia is on a downward slide. President
Vladimir Putin’s recent threat to retarget Russian missiles at some of
America’s European allies is just the latest flash point.

The elaborate charade of feigned friendship between Putin and President
George W. Bush, begun several years ago when Bush testified to the
alleged spiritual depth of his Russian counterpart’s soul, hasn’t helped.

The fact that similarly staged “friendships”–between F.D.R. and “Uncle
Joe” Stalin, Nixon and Brezhnev, Clinton and Yeltsin–ended in mutual
disappointment did not prevent Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice from
boasting not long ago that U.S.-Russian relations were now the best in
history.

Surely it would be preferable to achieve a genuine, sustainable improvement
before staging public theatrics designed to create the illusion that one has
taken place. It’s a lesson Bush should keep in mind in July, when Putin is
scheduled to visit the President in Kennebunkport, Maine.

There are many reasons for the chill but none greater than the regrettable
wars both nations have launched: Russia’s in Chechnya and the U.S.’s in
Iraq.

The wars have damaged prospects for what seemed attainable a decade and a
half ago: Russia and the U.S. genuinely engaged in collaboration based on
shared common values, spanning the old cold war dividing lines and thereby
enhancing global security and expanding the transatlantic community.

The war in Chechnya reversed the ambiguous trend toward democracy in
Russia.Mercilessly waged by Putin with extraordinary brutality, it not only
crushed a small nation long victimized by Russian and then Soviet
imperialism but also led to political repression and greater authoritarianism inside
Russia and fueled chauvinism among Russia’s people.

Putin exploited his success in stabilizing the chaotic post-Soviet society
by restoring central control over political life. The war in Chechnya became
his personal crusade, a testimonial to the restoration of Kremlin clout.

Since the beginning of that war, a new élite–the siloviki from the FSB (the
renamed KGB) and the subservient new economic oligarchs–has come to
dominate policymaking under Putin’s control.

This new élite embraces a strident nationalism as a substitute for communist
ideology while engaging in thinly veiled acts of violence against political
dissenters.

Putin almost sneeringly dismissed the murder of a leading Russian
journalist, Anna Politkovskaya, who exposed crimes against the Chechens.

Similarly, troubling British evidence of Russian involvement in the London
murder of an outspoken FSB defector produced little more than official
Russian ridicule. All the while, Russia’s mass media are facing ever growing
political restrictions.

It doubtless has not escaped the Kremlin’s attention that the West,
including the U.S., has remained largely silent. The Bush Administration
was indifferent to the slaughter in Chechnya, and after 9/11 it even tacitly
accepted Putin’s claim that in crushing the Chechens, he was serving as a
volunteer in Bush’s global “war on terror.”

The killing of journalist Politkovskaya and Putin’s dismissal of its import
similarly failed to temper the affectations of personal camaraderie between
the leaders in the White House and the Kremlin. For that matter, neither has
the general antidemocratic regression in Russia’s political life.

The apparent American indifference should not be attributed just to a moral
failure on the part of U.S. policymakers. Russia has gained impunity in part
because of the effects of America’s disastrous war in Iraq on U.S. foreign
policy.

Consider the fallout: Guantánamo has discredited America’s long-standing
international legitimacy; false claims of Iraqi WMD have destroyed U.S.
credibility; continuing chaos and violence in Iraq have diminished respect
for U.S. power.

America, as a result, has come to need Russia’s support on matters such as
North Korea and Iran to a far greater extent than it would if not for Iraq.

As a consequence, two dominant moods now motivate the Kremlin élite:
schadenfreude at the U.S.’s discomfort and a dangerous presumption that
Russia can do what it wishes, especially in its geopolitical backyard. The
first has led Moscow to take malicious slaps at America’s tarnished
superpower status, propelled by feel-good expectations of the U.S.’s further
slide.

One should not underestimate Russia’s resentment over the fall of the Soviet
Union (Putin has called it the greatest disaster of the 20th century) and
its hope that the U.S. will suffer the same fate.

Indeed, Kremlin strategists surely relish the thought of a U.S. deeply
bogged down not only in Iraq but also in a war with Iran, which would
trigger a dramatic spike in the price of oil, a commodity in plentiful
supply in Russia.

The second mood–that Russia has free rein to act as it pleases on the
international scene–is also ominous.

It has already tempted Moscow to intimidate newly independent Georgia;
reverse the gains of the Orange Revolution in Ukraine; wage aggressive
cyberwar against E.U. member Estonia after the Estonians dared to remove
from the center of their capital a monument celebrating Soviet domination of
their country; impose an oil embargo on Lithuania; monopolize international
access to the energy resources of Central Asia.

In all these cases, the U.S., consumed as it is by the war in Iraq, has been
rather passive. U.S. policy toward Russia has been more grandiloquent than
strategic.

Despite the tensions, the uneasy state of the relationship need not augur a
renewed cold war. The longer-term trends simply do not favor the more
nostalgic dreams of the Kremlin rulers. For all of Russia’s economic
recovery, its prospects are uncertain.

Russia’s population is dramatically shrinking, even as its Asian neighbors
are growing and expanding their military and economic might. The glamour
of Moscow and the glitter of St. Petersburg cannot obscure the fact that
much of Russia still lacks a basic modern infrastructure.

Oil-rich Russia (its leaders refer to it as an “energy superstate”) in some
ways is reminiscent of Nigeria, as corruption and money laundering fritter
away a great deal of the country’s wealth.

To an extent, Russia can use its vast profits to get its way. But buying
influence, even in Washington (where money goes a long way), cannot match
the clout the Soviet Union once enjoyed as the beacon of an ideology with
broad international appeal.

In these circumstances, the U.S. should pursue a calm, strategic (and
nontheatrical) policy toward Moscow that will help ensure that a future,
more sober Kremlin leadership recognizes that a Russia linked more closely
to the U.S. and the E.U. will be more prosperous, more democratic and
territorially more secure.

The U.S. should avoid careless irritants, like its clumsily surfaced
initiative to deploy its missile defenses next door to Russia. And it should
not dismiss out of hand Moscow’s views on, for example, negotiations with
Iran, lest Russia see its interests better served by a U.S.-Iran war.

But the U.S. should react firmly when Russia tries to bully its neighbors.
America should insist that Russia ratify the European Energy Charter to
dispel fears of energy blackmail.

The U.S. should continue to patiently draw Ukraine into the West so that
Russia will have to follow suit or risk becoming isolated between the
Euro-Atlantic community and a powerful China.

And, above all, the U.S. should terminate its war in Iraq, which is so
damaging to America’s ability to conduct an intelligent and comprehensive
foreign policy.                                          -30-
————————————————————————————————-
NOTE: Zbigniew Brzezinski who served in the Carter Administration as

National Security Advisor, is author of “Second Chance: Three Presidents
and the Crisis of American Superpower”
————————————————————————————————-
LINK: http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1630544,00.html
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[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
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13.   UKRAINE’S UNFULFILLED PROMISE

EDITORIAL: Toledo Blade, Toledo, Ohio, Sunday, June 10, 2007

AMONG Eastern Europe’s large countries, the most consistent under-
performer since the demise of the Soviet Union has been Ukraine, which
is bogged down once again in a major intra-government scrap that stands
in the way of economic or any other progress.

With a population of 47 million, Ukraine is not only big but it also
benefits from having a lot of friends around the world, not the least of
which is the United States. America is home to many Ukrainian-Americans
who support aid to the country in consolidating its independence and
building up its economy.

Nonetheless, for a variety of reasons, some of them hard to justify, Ukraine
has lagged behind other Eastern European countries in moving forward to
take advantage of the opportunities open to it, in terms of political
development and in improving its prospects to join the European Union,
generally considered a positive step in that part of the world.

Instead, nasty political blood-letting continues unabated between rival
elements in Ukraine. The most recent round involves familiar names,
President Viktor A. Yushchenko and Prime Minister Viktor F. Yanukovich,
opponents in the 2004 presidential elections which featured, among other
examples of viciousness, an apparent attempt to kill Mr. Yushchenko by
poisoning. The incident left the president disfigured and close to death for
a while.

A fundamental problem appears to be divisions among Ukrainians based
on regions and languages. Rather than see these as splits in national unity
that need to be resolved for the country to move forward, Ukrainians
continue to dwell on their differences.

It is in part this problem that also contributes to the extensive corruption
that pervades the government, a considerable barrier to foreign aid and
investment, as well as to efforts on the part of domestic business people
and financiers to do something with the country’s considerable economic
resources. These include industry, agriculture, and mineral wealth.

Ukrainians also generally have the bad habit of blaming their problems on
the Russians. There is undoubtedly some truth to this, but rather than
seeing such outside influence as an obstacle to overcome by facing Russia
from a position of national unity, Ukrainians seem to play into the
Russians’ hands with their own political scrapping and wrangling.

What’s needed are early elections, free of the viciousness that has
characterized past voting. These could come in September.

Otherwise, Ukraine is doomed to the same sort of hapless non-development
that has characterized its first 16 years of renewed independence – a sad
loss to its people, as well as to the rest of Europe and the world that
awaits fulfillment of Ukraine’s considerable promise.         -30-
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http://toledoblade.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070610/OPINION02/706090308
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14.              UKRAINE HITS OUT AT RUSSIAN ‘DANGER’

By Stefan Wagstyl and Roman Olearchyk
Financial Times, London, UK, Sunday, June 10 2007

Russian political interference and the lack of transparency around energy
supplies coming mainly from Russia threaten Ukraine as it struggles with
serious political turmoil, the head of the security services in Kiev has
warned.

“We are a young country. For any country it is dangerous when domestic
politics is being interfered with by foreign sources,” said Valentyn
Nalyvaichenko, the acting chief of the SBU, the state security service, in
his first foreign media interview.

He also pointed to the dangers of corruption, weak institutions and a lack
of co-ordination in pursuing big criminal cases.

His remarks came as Ukraine is embroiled in a power struggle between
President Viktor Yushchenko and his rival, Viktor Yanukovich, the prime
minister, in which Moscow takes a keen interest.

A 41-year-old former diplomat and fluent English speaker, Mr Nalyvaichenko
said in the interview at the SBU’s imposing Kiev headquarters last week: “I
feel Ukraine’s independence and statehood should be protected from any
turmoil, domestic or external.”

The road to security lay in domestic reform and in improved co-operation
with foreign security services, including those of the US, EU states,
Israel, Russia and other neighbouring states, he argued.

While Mr Nalyvaichenko, who was picked for his post last year by the
president, was explicit about the danger of Russian interference in Ukraine,
he was careful to avoid pinning any blame on the Russian security services
or other state institution.

He singled out for comment recent anti-Nato demonstrations in Crimea, where
pro-Russian sentiments are strong and where the Russian Black Sea fleet is
based in the Ukrainian port of Sevastopol.

There was no “domestic reason for such negative and active anti-Nato”
protests, said Mr Nalyvaichenko, who, like Mr Yushchenko, is a firm believer
in closer co-operation with Nato.

“Dangerous” slogans were being used in Crimea and “false information” such
as claims that Nato troops would be stationed in Ukraine.

“This is absolutely against the national interest of Ukraine. Using some
so-called pro-Russian organisation in Crimea, politicians – mostly
domestic – are exploiting this issue to boost their popularity,” he said.

The SBU chief indicated he was aware of finance coming from outside Ukraine
and said misusing political financing laws was “a little bit dangerous”.

Those who broke the rules would be prosecuted, he said, citing the example
of Proryv, the Kremlin-backed Russian nationalist youth group which had had
its Sevastopol office closed by a court order.

Donetska Respublika, a separatist grouping in eastern Ukraine, where many
Russia-oriented Ukrainians live, had also been taken to court.

Mr Nalyvaichenko also gave the example of Konstantin Zatulin, the
nationalist Russian MP, who was banned from Ukraine after making
inflammatory speeches.

As for energy security, the SBU chief said the key was greater transparency.
He promised that Russia and Ukraine would this summer provide greater
clarity about the natural gas trade in which the controversial Rosukrenergo
company plays a vital role.

“Ukraine and Russia should make this situation more transparent. [We need to
show] what the real prices are and what the real financial sources are here,
the flowing of money, and risks of dirty money and money laundering. To

know the real situation, the real operators, the real deal, is key.”

The SBU chief complained about the lack of co-operation between state
agencies, saying this undermined the rule of law, and called for reform and
the creation of a new anti-corruption unit.                       -30-
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15.      UKRAINE: HUMMING, STEAMING HONEYCOMB
                    Economist’s Moscow correspondent tours Ukraine

Correspondent’s Dairy: From Economist.com
London, United Kingdom Friday, Jun 8th 2007

                                            MONDAY
ARRIVING in Kiev on a swelteringly hot day last week, I went walking in the
city centre. I found myself exchanging pleasantries with three burly
black-clad commandos, sporting guns and truncheons, sitting in a four-wheel
drive-and eating ice-cream.

Like everyone else on Independence Square they were enjoying the cool gusts
from the fountains. “It is too nice a day to talk about politics”, said one
of them, smiling broadly. “Let’s talk about women.”

I had hit upon a national holiday, when the favourite leisure activity among
a fair proportion of the residents of Kiev seems to consist of wandering
purposelessly along the city’s main shopping street, Khreshchatik.

Stalls on the pavement were doing brisk trade in the usual (for Ukraine)
tourist stuff: yellow and blue national flags, old Soviet red banners, and
T-shirts emblazoned with the portraits of two bitter political rivals-Yulia
Tymoshenko, a populist opposition maverick known for her fiery rhetoric
and plaited hair, and Viktor Yanukovich, the prime minister.

Here at least there was no difference between them: either shirt could be
had for 30 Hryvna (about $6).

One thing missing from the streets was any sign of the protracted political
crisis-a power-struggle between president and parliament-that brought me to
Kiev.

A few hundred meters from Independence Square the Ukrainian parliament was
into its second month of turmoil; President Viktor Yushchenko, having tried
to dissolve it in April, was reduced to issuing decrees that were being
ignored by his own government; even the ice-cream-eating commandos had
seemed on the brink of a violent clash with presidential guards just a few
days before, after the president sacked the prosecutor-general.

Towards the end of 2004 Independence Square was a theatre of the Orange
revolution that brought Mr Yushchenko to power, beating out Mr Yanukovich.

If the public mood has been a lot less troubled this time round, as the two
have clashed again, that argues for two related explanations: first,
Ukrainians have got at least temporarily bored with the whole circus of
politics; and, second, they can afford to get bored, because the economy is
steaming ahead.

There is plenty of food in the shops, new restaurants are springing up on
every corner-and if you don’t fancy shopping or eating, there are large
shady parks giving cover from heat and politics alike.

The conversations I have been having strongly suggest that few Ukrainians
are even trying to understand what is going on in their country any more.
And if they don’t understand, what hope have I?

One obvious thing I can do, coming in from Moscow, is to look for parallels
with Russia. I can think back, for example, to that sunny afternoon in
October 1993 when, after a long stand-off between President Boris Yeltsin
and his parliament, Yeltsin ordered tanks to fire empty shells at the
parliament building.

But the differences between this stand-off in Ukraine, and that stand-off in
Russia, have been far more striking than any similarities.

[1] First, nobody in Ukraine has seemed in the mood for violence. When
troops loyal to Mr Yushchenko drew close to Kiev recently they were stopped
by traffic police loyal to Mr Yanukovich. They got out of their buses and
proceeded on foot, unarmed.

[2] Second, the conflict in Russian reflected an ideological divide.
Die-hard nationalists and communists, ready to hang Boris Yeltsin’s team
from the first tree, confronted an elected pro-Western president hostile to
the Soviet legacy.

The conflict in Ukraine is a lot less straightforward-not least because it
lacks heroes. It is not a fight between communists and capitalists. It is
not even a fight between the Russian-speaking east and the
Polish-comprehending west of Ukraine.

To call Mr Yanukovich “pro-Russian” and Mr Yushchenko “pro-Western” is
no longer accurate: both are seeking closer ties with Europe, and neither
wants to be back in Russia.

The situation in Ukraine is something closer to a plain (if not simple)
power struggle over who will run the country, and how. When the Soviet Union
collapsed in 1991 Ukraine had next to no experience of managing its own
affairs.

Building a state was never going to be easy, and Ukraine made heavy weather
of it. It evolved a style of politics that was all inside baseball, with no
durable rules.

You might almost say that this crisis is to be welcomed, so long as it plays
itself out within the political class, and so long as it leads to agreement
on a few rules sufficient to stop something similar happening all over
again.
                                              TUESDAY
WHEN the call came from an assistant to President Viktor Yushchenko asking
me to be at his office for 3pm, I was genuinely and pleasantly surprised. A
head of state in the middle of a national crisis might reasonably claim to
have more important things to do than talk to journalists.

But if anything else at all was going on inside the building of the
presidential administration, the former headquarters of the Soviet-era
Communist Party in Ukraine, it was a well-kept secret. Everything was eerily
quiet.

The long corridors were empty. The high doors-designed by Soviet architects
to make visitors feel small-were shut. There was no buzz. Nobody was running
up and down with documents.

A colleague and I were ushered up to the president’s floor and into a small,
dimly-lit room with a round table in the middle. (Mr Yushchenko’s taste for
round tables, and for peace-making talks, is a subject of jokes in Kiev.)
With a delay of less than an hour, Mr Yushchenko turned up.

I had interviewed him once before, ten years ago in London when he was still
the head of Ukraine’s Central Bank. He was good-looking, professional,
gentle, smart-but you would not for a moment have called him power-hungry
or charismatic. He certainly did not strike me then as someone destined to
change the course of Ukrainian politics.

By now I imagined him changed into an adrenaline-driven politician thriving
on crisis, a younger Boris Yeltsin. And changed he was; but in another way.
The man who sat in front of me was worn-out and subdued.

His heavily made-up face was scarred still from the dioxin poisoning that
almost killed him a few weeks before the presidential election. He projected
a sense of isolation and loneliness. He seemed divorced from the bustle of
Kiev life and from the circus of parliamentary politics.

I wanted to get him to talk in very basic terms about the seemingly
perpetual political crisis in Ukraine, and how best to resolve it.

I asked him about the differences between his vision for the country and
that of Viktor Yanukovich, his arch-rival, the prime minister. But the
answers he offered were less about the deep political divisions in the
country, and more about legal and procedural issues in the parliament.

He said that Mr Yanukovich’s supporters had been using bribery and pressure
to make members of parliament switch sides: “Our current constitution
prohibits such switches, but they tried to make practice out of it.” The
result, he said, was a parliament with an illegitimate majority.

A fair argument-but precisely the kind of legal talk that has come to so
frustrate the more headstrong of Mr Yushchenko’s supporters, and it is easy
to see why.

As they tell it, they risked their lives taking to the streets in 2004 to
protest against a rigged election and a rotten regime. They expected their
man to take charge, cleanse the system, and punish the bad guys.

Instead the president meekly transferred much of his power to parliament,
honouring changes to the constitution negotiated by his predecessor, Leonid
Kuchma; he tolerated corruption and squabbling among his own allies; and he
watched Mr Yanukovich, the loser in the Orange revolution, engineer a
majority in the newly powerful parliament.

At best, all this was seen as weakness, at worst-as betrayal. “Democracy and
tolerance is all well and good, but how can you be so tolerant and
democratic when everyone else around you is cheating?”, as one frustrated
Yushchenko supporter asked me.

Stand back, and you can see Mr Yushchenko’s problem. The big winner in the
Orange revolution was meant to be the rule of law; Ukraine was to become a
normal, law-abiding country.

If the new president had begun his term by reversing constitutional changes
already under way, that would have sent all the wrong signals.

Instead Mr Yushchenko did the decent thing, and allowed the transfer of some
presidential powers to parliament. But in a political system stunted until
then by a domineering president, this was a recipe for confusion.

Lately Mr Yushchenko has been trying to claw some of his power back, and
that has been a recipe for confusion too.

Mr Yushchenko finds himself caught between his aspirations for Ukraine, and
the political resources with which he must work. And from the looks of him
lately, he is nowhere near reconciling the two.
                                           WEDNESDAY
THE politics in Kiev was all tactical manoeuvring, and I was getting lost in
its complications. To discover more about the two Viktors, Yushchenko and
Yanukovich, I decided to visit their respective constituencies-starting with
Donetsk, the industrial heart of Ukraine, where most people speak Russian
and support Mr Yanukovich.

“Don’t go out after dark,” a friend in Kiev warned me the night before. “It
is poor and rough,” confirmed a nice lady in the presidential
administration. Evidently, Donetsk inspired resentment and fear in
white-collar Kiev.

Walking past the prosecutor-general’s office in the capital, where
thuggish-looking men were gathered (probably for payment) in a show of
support for Mr Yanukovich, I could see why.

The first surprise of the journey was a happy one. The plane to Donetsk was
a smart, clean Boeing, not a Soviet museum-piece. My heart leapt for joy.
But this interlude of modernity soon came to a close.

As we approached Donetsk I could see from the window a painfully familiar
sight: long rows of faceless, grey apartment blocks, typical of any
Soviet-built city.

A walk around the centre of the city was a disorienting experience.
Everything screamed “Soviet Union”: the 1940s architecture, the Red Army
tank on a podium, the statue of  Lenin in front of the local government
building … I pinched myself and looked again. It was a statue to Taras
Shevchenko, a Ukrainian national hero. I needed a drink.

A few minutes later I was sipping cold beer in a shady café in a park, and
falling into conversation with a Donetsk businessman called Alexander. He
ran an insurance firm, he said.

Business was booming. Property prices had risen fivefold in five years.
“Don’t believe anything you hear about Donetsk”, he advised. “The standard
of living here is much higher than in Kiev.”

In his pinstriped summer suit and white shoes, Alexander certainly looked
nothing like the Yanukovich supporters I had glimpsed in Kiev. He was a
member of Donetsk’s thousand-strong Jewish community, he said.

“Yanukovich is not a nationalist”, he continued. “He is good for Jews. We
had never had any problems in Donetsk, not a single Jewish grave has been
desecrated.” It was an unexpected argument.

It turned out that Alexander knew Yanukovich personally and had even worked
with him. “He is a good manager, people like him,” he said. “But what about
his criminal record?”, I asked. “Does not that make him unfit to run the
country?”

Alexander leaned towards me. “Listen”, he said. “What kind of family did you
grow up in?” “A good one,” I readily admitted. “And Yanukovich did not. He
grew up in a really tough family and he had to fend for himself. Besides, he
has served his sentence.” I felt embarrassed.

I wandered back towards the building with the Shevchenko-Lenin statue in
front, where I had an appointment with the head of the local parliament. A
former factory manager, he looked every inch a Soviet red director.

But he did not sound like one. “People in Kiev and in the west of Ukraine
think we are all gangsters and communists”, he said. “So when they come to
visit, which is not often, they feel shocked.”

“Does Donetsk want closer ties with Russia, or with Europe?” I asked him.
His answer was disarmingly pragmatic. “If joining Europe will make us
richer-we are for it.

If being closer to Russia gives us benefits-we should not turn away from it.
The best would be closeness to both,” he said, mixing Russian and Ukranian
as he spoke.

I walked out of his office and down the main street, where I came upon a
firework display. It was the last day of school, and 17-year old graduates
wrapped in national yellow and blue colour ribbons were immersing themselves
in a fountain. “Do you feel closer to Russia or to Europe?” I asked one
dripping-wet student. “I feel close to Ukraine,” she replied.
                                             THURSDAY
FROM Donetsk my plan was to fly to Lviv, the spiritual heart of western
Ukraine, where speaking Russian is considered in bad taste. But to my
astonishment there was no direct air connection between the two far-flung
cities. Unless I fancied a train journey of more than 24 hours, I had to fly
via Kiev.

Back at the domestic terminal in Kiev, I asked for a ticket to Lviv. “We
don’t sell them here. You’ll have to buy it at the international terminal,”
I was told. “But is not Lviv part of Ukraine?” I asked. No answer. I dutifully
bought my ticket at the international terminal.

“Where do I check in?” I enquired. “You have to go to the domestic
 terminal,” came the answer. If nothing else, this mysterious arrangement
captured the ambivalent place of Lviv in Ukrainian history and
consciousness.

For most of its history Lviv (also commonly called Lvov in English) was not
a Ukrainian city, still less a Russian one. From the first partition of
Poland in 1772 until 1918 it was known as Lemberg, and was part of the
Austro-Hungarian empire.

A Baedeker of 1900 described it as “Lemberg, Polish Lwow, French Léopol,
the capital of Galicia with 135,000 inhabitants (one fourth Jews).” Today it
is a city of 750,000, and only few hundred Jews are left.

After the Red Army drove out the Nazis in 1944, Lviv was made part of Soviet
Ukraine. The local airport celebrates the Soviet period with its monumental
sculptures of workers, pilots and peasants pressed against symmetrical
columns. The centre of the city, however, bears almost no mark of Soviet
rule.

It is still a provincial, Mitteleuropean town, forgotten by time. You expect
to hear the distant strains of the Radetzky march reverberating through the
night. The local government building, previously the Communist Party
headquarters, has changed not at all since it accommodated the Habsburg
rulers of Galicia.

“Everything here is exactly as it was under Franz-Joseph,” says Petro
Oliynyk, the current occupant of the governor’s office and a staunch
supporter of President Yushchenko. “The same stoves, the same furniture-
the governor of Krakow has the same,” he says.

Like any conversation in western Ukraine, ours starts with history, both
personal and national. And rare is the personal history here not touched by
family recollections of famine and repression under Stalin.

Mr Oliynyk’s father was prosecuted for joining a liberation army, his mother
was sent to Siberia. “My father hid a local Rabbi in his house,” he says
with particular pride.

For people in Lviv, a mere 80km from the Polish border, the integration of
Ukraine into Europe is not an economic issue, as it might seem in Donetsk,
but an existential one.

The choice between Mr Yushchenko and Mr Yanukovich is seen as the choice
between a European way of life and a post-Soviet one. “We did not fight for
Yuschenko during the Orange revolution-we fought for our own dignity,” a
young businesswoman tells me.

Still carrying my luggage and with no roof for the night, I walk through the
cobbled streets of the old town past Baroque churches, small coffee-shops
and street cafés, to a hotel listed in the 1900 Baedeker: the Grand. It must
have been brand new when the guidebook was published. I ask for a room in
Russian, but the receptionist tells me the hotel is fully booked.

A half-hour later I come back speaking English and several rooms have
mysteriously become available. I get an airy one with parquet floor and high
ceilings, overlooking the old Galician town. It is hard to believe that Lviv
and Donetsk are parts of the same country.

Yet, both here and in Donetsk, people want Ukraine to be an independent
nation, and they don’t seem to have a problem with its diversity. To be
sure, they recognise the historical and cultural divergences, but they are
careful not to turn those differences into divisions.

As one Lviv businessman tells me: “Perhaps western and eastern Ukraine would
be two different countries. But we have Kiev in the middle, and for Kiev it
is one country.”
                                              FRIDAY
I TAKE my leave of Ukraine on this occasion with a long walk through
Kiev-which Mikhail Bulgakov, in “The White Guard”, called, simply, “the
 City”:

“Beautiful in the frost and mist-covered hills above the Dnieper, the life
of the City hummed and steamed like a many-layered honeycomb.

All night long the City shone, glittered and danced with light until
morning, when the lights went out and the City cloaked itself once more
in smoke and mist.”

I start from my hotel, in Podol, the lower part of the city, an old
neighbourhood of craftsmen, merchants and tradesmen that still hums and
steams like a honeycomb.

I walk past Contract Square towards Andreevsky Spusk, an old cobbled lane
that rises in twists and turns to the upper city.

On the left going up is a two-storey building, number 13, where a century
ago Bulgakov lived with his parents. Later he would make this the home of
the Turbin family in “”The White Guard””, changing the name of the street to
Aleskeevsky Spusk.

Amid civil war, in the “great and terrible year of 1918 from the birth of
Christ, the second from the Revolution”, the two brothers and their
red-haired sister would warm themselves by a hot stove, strum guitar strings
and slumber under an old lamp shade: “Never, never remove the lamp-shade!
The lamp-shade is sacred.”

Bulgakov was intoxicated with Kiev, its cabarets, opera, street cafés, trams
and “rows of electric globes suspended high from the elegant curlicues of
tall lamp-posts”. But he saw it least of all as a Ukrainian city and
resented fiercely any manifestation of Ukrainian nationalism, even national
identity. To be “the City” was enough.

Andreevsky Spusk leads up to an astonishing blue and white Baroque church
with golden domes that tower over the city.

Here, at the top of the hill, starts another Kiev-the thousand-year-old
capital of Kievan Rus, the greatest state of eastern Europe, which prospered
from the 10th to the 13th century, and gave birth to Russia, Ukraine, and
Belarus.

Its founders were the Varangians, or Vikings, the Scandinavians who also
conquered parts of England and France. They were invited into the lands of
Rus by feuding Slav tribes who wanted an external ruler to impose order and
law upon them.

The greatest monument to the civilisation of Kievan Rus is the splendid
Santa Sofia Cathedral, built in 1032 by Prince Yaroslav the Wise, the son of
Vladimir the Great, who had adopted Christianity from Byzantium.

It survived Mongol invasion in the mid-13th century, bombing in the second
world war, and even the Soviet habit of blowing up churches.

It has an 18th-century exterior: the original Byzantine brick walls have
been extended and covered in plaster. But inside, as Anna Reid writes in
“Borderland”, a book that any visitor should bring along,

“It breathes the splendid austerity of Byzantium. Etiolated saints, draped
in ochre and pink, march in shadowy fresco round the walls, above them a
massive Virgin hangs in vivid glass mosaic, alone on a deep gold ground.”

In Kiev, and especially in Santa Sofia, the currents of east and west
mingle. Yaroslav tried to tie his sophisticated kingdom to Europe by
marrying his daughters to the kings of Norway, Hungary and France-the last
of whom declared Kiev to be “more unified, happier, stronger and more
civilised than France herself.”

To the extent that there was such a thing as Europe in those days, Ukraine
was a big part of it-and it is unhappy to find itself on the margins of
Europe now.

Yaroslav wisely warned his children: “If ye dwell in envy and dissension,
quarrelling with one another, then ye will perish yourselves and bring to
ruin the land of your ancestors.” There is wisdom here for the politicians
of today, if only they would listen.                           -30-
————————————————————————————————-
LINK: http://www.economist.com/displaystory.cfm?story_id=9280683

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[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
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16. UKRAINE: FROM AUTHORITARIANISM TO REPUBLIC

ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: by Mykola Rubanets, for UP
Original article in Ukrainian, translated by Anna Platonenko
Ukrayinska Pravda (UP), Kyiv, Ukraine,  Saturday, June 9, 2007

When talking about modern history of Ukrainian formation, one may certainly
quote Taras Shevchenko: it is “the poem of the free people”. Indeed, and in
just the same satirical and sarcastic manner. But isn’t that so?

For example, what did the first Ukrainian president, with all due respect
for him and his outstanding service to the country, leave us with? With the
sacramental words: “We have what we have”.

The second president, who promised us to take “the way towards radical
reforms”, over a period of 10 years did not succeed in answering his own
question: “So what are we actually building?”

The third president’s government, with the only exception of the short-term
post-Maidan euphoria, is now turning into a permanent crisis, which
threatens to utterly ruin the country.

The only thing left to do is to pray to God that we never again face the
“epoch of Ruin”, which our ancestors had gone through after Bohdan
Khmelnytsky.

What to do?

The first thing Ukrainians really need to do today is to stop crying,
grieving and complaining with or without reason.

By the will of God and owing to the favorable circumstances we have an
independent state. And there are no empires (at least on three of four
sides) willing to tear us to pieces again.

So here lies the answer to the question “what to do?”: to work hard and
build the country. But what kind of country?

                THE GRAVEST SHORTCOMING OF THE 
                             UKRAINIAN CONSTITUTION 
In general, it is the Fundamental Law of the country which is to provide the
answer to such a question. Reading over the Ukrainian Constitution, we find
an attempt to answer the question in Article 5: “Ukraine is a republic”. But
what republic?

However, the text of the article provides no answer to this vitally
important matter of principle. And this is the gravest shortcoming of the
Ukrainian Fundamental Law: there is no concept of Ukraine’s formation as a
republic.

And it is a pity to ascertain that the Ukrainian Constitution looks very
much like a student essay composed of different, often contrary, European
patterns. And that is why this Constitution is so distant from the Ukrainian
reality, being eclectic in its form and declarative in its content.

Thus, in order to change the reality and influence the development of the
country and the society, we need a Constitution completely different both in
its spirit and essence.

Today it is quite obvious that this document is first of all to provide a
clear-cut answer to the question where and which way Ukraine is actually
going.

But Ukraine has not yet gone through the period of transition from Soviet
socialism to typical Western, or European, capitalism. We are somewhere in
the middle of its first stage, which is called the period of primary
accumulation of capital.

That is why the country and its government together with all the law
enforcement agencies, figuratively speaking, cannot even hold back the packs
of ‘privatizers’ from unlawful actions, seizure and plunder of property
accumulated by the previous generations of the Ukrainian people.

Because all the executive power is exercised by the officials, many of which
will sell their own mother for a bribe. And almost every week we face
murders of entrepreneurs, corporate raiders etc.

Markets and spheres of influence are being constantly redistributed. A major
part of the economy, power and social life finds itself under the influence
of behind-the-scenes activities and agreements or even under the control of
criminals.

From this point of view one can clearly see why Ukraine is worlds apart from
the democracy as a system of power and social order, where the law and
certain norms of public order and moral values prevail.

We should therefore clearly understand that what we really need during this
period is a very strong power which would restrain and control. And it can
only be a state with a firm power structure, appropriate regulatory and
punitive agencies.

Towards the democracy or back to authoritarianism?

Taking all these circumstances into account, the author at the same time
does not share the opinion that Ukraine needs dictatorship or
authoritarianism. If we long to be a part of Europe again, we need, despite
all our misfortunes and difficult tasks, to form the democratic republic.

But this is where the most essential question arises: what republic?

It is generally known that a republic can be presidential, parliamentary or
their combination: either presidential-parliamentary or vice versa. These
forms appear as a result of a long evolutionary process, social revolutions
or sweeping socio-political reforms.

Ukraine faced neither of the three. All the hopes and expectations that
after Maidan the new ‘orange’ government would rapidly take us away from
Kuchma’s authoritarianism towards a democratic republic of European design,
have vanished into thin air.

By the way, in recent years there has been a great deal of talk, especially
after several discussions as to the implementation of the political reform,
about the search of a new form of democratic republic.

However, the so-called step-by-step and partial implementation of this
reform has only unbalanced and weakened the government and the country

as a whole. The visual proof of this is the present political crisis.
                      UKRAINE IS NOT A REPUBLIC YET
So what is the democratic republic that we should actually strive for? It is
a republican form of government that, in contrast to authoritarianism,
provides for a certain minimum of democracy.

And the latter is grounded on at least two principles: the electivity of
representative and executive power at all levels by the people, which in its
turn means the accountability and submission of government bodies to
appropriate communities.

It also implies drawing up the state budget on a ‘top down’ principle,
provided that this budget should also be controlled by the people at every
possible level.

And this is what the concept “republic” means.

In other words, it implies that both the local and central authorities are
elected and controlled by the citizens themselves, by their communities and,
finally, by the people, i.e. the political nation.

So what do we actually have in Ukraine?

In accordance with the Article 118 of the Constitution of Ukraine, “the
executive power in oblasts, districts, and in the Cities of Kyiv and
Sevastopol is exercised by local state administrations”.

Are these administrations or at least their heads elected by the Ukrainian
people? For this is exactly where the democratic process starts.

The answer is no. This very article further reads: “The composition of local
state administrations is formed by heads of local state administrations.
Heads of local state administrations are appointed to office and dismissed
from office by the President of Ukraine upon the submission of the Cabinet
of Ministers of Ukraine”.

We may therefore conclude that Article 118 of the Fundamental Law of Ukraine
completely runs counter to and eliminates paragraph 1 of Article 5 which
states that Ukraine is a republic.

So what political system do we have in Ukraine after all? All the systems,
in which the executive power is appointed from above, are authoritarian.
That is to say, it is the first reason why Ukraine should be referred to as
a country with the authoritarian government.

The same thing with the state budget: it is not drawn up and implemented on
a ‘top down’ principle, and is not controlled by the people of Ukraine. Only
the local state administrations of Kyiv and Sevastopol are entitled to take
charge of the local budgets.

Of course, somebody may object to this and say that there is a large number
of articles in the Constitution which read that “Ukraine is a sovereign and
independent, democratic, social, law-based state” (Article 1), that “in
Ukraine, local self-government is recognised and guaranteed” (Article 7)
etc.

Moreover, there is a whole chapter dedicated to local self-government –
Chapter XI (Articles 140-146). Yes, it does exist, but, as they say, only on
paper.

And what do we have? The answer to this question, after 16 years of
Ukrainian independence, is now quite obvious to us all: there is neither
democracy nor local self-government, nor republic as such in our country.
                                          WHAT NEXT?
The first answer to this question should be as follows: all the reforms in
Ukraine are to reach their logical completion, i.e. the establishment of
democratic republic.

In order to achieve this, it will not be enough to introduce several
amendments to the Fundamental Law. The Constitution should base itself
on a new concept, the main task and essence of which lie in the need for
replacement of the authoritarian form of government with a democratic,
republican one.

Thus we should first of all determine what republic we will actually have:
presidential (like in the US), parliamentary (Germany) or semi-presidential
(France).

Taking into account that for 15 years Ukraine has been developing as a
presidential-parliamentary republic and that the period of transition is not
yet over, it is too early and even too harmful for the country to break the
presidential power structure.

Thus after the local self-governments have been established, the
Presidential Administration should not be abolished but rather be vested
with governmental, supervisory and control functions.

All these issues can be settled and regulated by the Constitution if it
contains a detailed model of presidential-parliamentary republic.

And in order to emphasize and secure the democratic order of this republic,
in which all the authority throughout the regions belongs to the citizens
and their communities, and in the country – to the people, it would be quite
reasonable to reflect all this in the name of our country.

The author believes that the most appropriate alternative to this name would
be the one given by our predecessors, but, however, not yet implemented –
Ukrainian People’s Republic.

The project of such a republic would be the best way out of the current
crisis and would show us the means for further development of our country.

In conclusion, let us note that owing to the project of the modern Ukrainian
People’s Republic, which is to be the contents and essence of the new
Constitution of Ukraine, we will not only be able to cut the Gordian knot of
problems connected with the government, but also be able to create a new
conceptual basis for dealing with the outdated reforms, such as
administrative, territorial, budgetary, tax, local self-government reform,
the reform of the housing and communal services.

Only when these reforms are carried out as a whole will it then be possible
for Ukraine to develop as a civilized European state with high levels of
democracy and high standards of people’s welfare, worthy of the XXI century.
—————————————————————————————————
LINK: http://www2.pravda.com.ua/en/news/2007/6/9/8024.htm
————————————————————————————————–

[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
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17. UKRAINE: YUSHCHENKO MADE MORE ROOM FOR MANEUVER.
                                  TWO POSSIBLE SCENARIOS

ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: by Viktor Chyvokunya, UP
Original article in Ukrainian, Translated by Eugene Ivantsov
Ukrayinska Pravda, Kyiv, Ukraine, Saturday, June 9, 2007

Ukrainian politics acquired new traditions. For instance, Mr. Piskun with a
ridiculous redundancy is appointed and then discharged, the Central Election
Commission is dissolved and then formed again and President Yushchenko
issues and cancels his decrees to call an early election.

On Tuesday the president made a step which his opponents awaited with
sarcasm and his allies with a hope. Mr. Yushchenko issued the third decree
to call an early election. This time he set a new election date – September
30.

Presidential decree is based on the night negotiations with Mr. Yanukovych
and Mr. Moroz and resignation of over 150 MPs which made the Verkhovna
Rada invalid.

According to Ukrayinska Pravda sources, President Yushchenko attracted four
ex-judges of the Constitutional Court to working out of the document. Even
Vasyl Nimchenko who is representative of the government in the
Constitutional Court supported the document.

However, the Party of Regions was most probably ignorant of this fact.
Having learnt about the third decree, Mr. Yanukovych’s brothers-in-arms
stated they would collect signatures for a new appeal to the Constitutional
Court.

But this time Mr. Yanukovych’s team is in a more difficult situation.

Already on October 17, 2002, the Constitutional Court created pre-conditions
for the third presidential decree.

Back then, the Constitutional Court interpreted Article 82 of the
Constitution in the following way: The Verkhovna Rada is valid if two third
of its constitutional staff is elected.

The Constitutional Court stated that this provision is the condition for
validity of the Verkhovna Rada during the entire convocation period and
cannot be viewed as the reason for opening its first session.

In fact, the Constitutional Court gave the answer to the question that
bothered MPs from the Party of Regions on Monday.

Meanwhile, Oleksandr Moroz stated that until the CEC accepts resignation
of 151 MPs parliament will keep working.

This Moroz’s idea to engage the CEC contradicts the Constitution which
clearly states “that “powers of a people’s deputy are terminated when a
people’s deputy leaves the parliamentary faction.”

The Law on Election was written in such a way that the final decision had to
be adopted by party congresses.

Besides, Mr. Moroz’s another demand was conformation by the CEC that
there was no substitution for the lawmakers who had resigned.

Additional guarantees from the CEC shows Oleksandr Moroz’s interest.
Socialist leader knows what he is doing: having charged the CEC with this
matter, the speaker delays an early election.

None of the sides has majority in the CEC, thus, it will be impossible to
make any decision.
                                         SCENARIO 1
Imagine that 151 MP left their parliamentary factions which resulted in
termination of their powers of people’s deputies.

In this case the coalition will have a hard time. The same decision of the
Constitutional Court dated October 17, 2002 contains another fatal norm: “In
case the Verkhovna Rada staff is decreased to less than 300 MPs, powers of
the Verkhovna Rada must be terminated until the sufficient number of MPs is
elected.”

Thus, following the president’s logic, all sessions of parliament are
nothing but meeting of the hobby groups.

To become legitimate again, the Verkhovna Rada must count 300 MPs. That
means that those who stand below in the party list must take place of the
missing lawmakers.

But this is impossible because BYuT and Our Ukraine started cancellation of
their lists. Although the coalition states that these parties have not
finished this process yet because they were stopped by a legal action, it
does not matter anyway because bringing 151 new MPs to parliament is

decided exclusively by the CEC.

The CEC leadership has enough people loyal to the president to block such an
unfavorable course of events.

Also, Mr. Kinakh’s people will demand to bring their MPs to parliament with
will cause counter actions if Our Ukraine insists on cancellation of the
entire list.

In such a case, during legal procedures the CEC cannot adopt any decisions
on this matter.

Delays play into Mr. Yushchenko’s hands since without the CEC decision it
will be impossible to bring new MPs to parliament.

Without these MPs the coalition can keep gathering in the Verkhovna Rada
building but these meetings will be not considered plenary sessions, taking
into account decision of the Constitutional Court.

When 30 days pass Mr. Yushchenko will have the fourth reason to call an
early election – now the Verkhovna Rada cannot begin plenary sessions during
30 days of one session.

Thus, the circle closes up

It is interesting that Volodymyr Shapoval who is Mr. Yushchenko’s ally and
current head of the CEC is the chairman judge in the case that will declare
the Verkhovna Rada legitimate only if it counts 300 MPs.

If the coalition dares to dispute the third decree in the Constitutional
Court the blue-and-white will appear in uncertainty again.

The second attempt to pressure Mr. Yushchenko with the help of the
Constitutional Court failed. As the president cancelled his decree dated
April 26, one can dump the corresponding draft resolution worked out by the
Communist member of the Constitutional Court which declares this decree
illegitimate.

Hearings regarding Mr. Yushchenko’s new decree will start from the very
beginning. The Court will start with appointing the chairman judge. Even if
he will be loyal to the coalition the Constitutional Court still has a big
problem – one day it has quorum, the next day it has not.

For example, on Thursday there was no quorum because Acting Head of the
Court Valeriy Pshenychny was not at work due to personal reasons, and
Susanna Stanik was supposedly on vacation.

Election of the Constitutional Court chairman can become another apple of
discord. As known, this position became vacant after voluntary resignation
of Ivan Dombrovsky. According to some information, he may try to be renewed
in this office.

Due to Mr. Pshenychny’s absence Mr. Dombrovsky actually chairs the Court
again. As the oldest judge he become acting head of the court.
                                         SCENARIO 2
The opposition will be in a very difficult situation if they do not have 151
MPs who will be ready to resign and publicly announce their decision.

At first, the Orange stated they had 171 MPs. As of Friday, they received
confirmation from 97 BYuT MPs and 60 MPs from Our Ukraine which totals

157 lawmakers.

However, Party of Regions MP Vasyl Khara told Ukrayinska Pravda that Our
Ukraine member Yuriy Artemchenko and another four MPs recalled their
resignations.

During the day Ukrayinska Pravda tried to contact Yuriy Artemchenko but his
aid told he was on a sick leave and refused to talk over the phone.

Mr. Artemchenko’s refusal does not seem surprising, taking into account his
friendly relations with Russian businessman Konstantin Grigirishyn. The
latter wages a war against Ihor Kolomoisky who is Mr. Yushchenko’s favorite
now.

Mr. Artemchenko is also close to Petro Poroshenko who is in disgrace with
today’s top-management of Our Ukraine.

Besides, the coalition paid attention to the fact that MP Volodymyr
Stretovych refused to comply with Our Ukraine decision to recognize
parliament illegitimate.

On Monday he came to the coordinative council chaired by Oleksandr Moroz
which contradicted official position of the BYuT and Our Ukraine as they
believed the Verkhovna Rada had become illegitimate on Saturday.

Some sources claim that parts of statements are doubtful. Certain
resignations are signed not by MPs but by their aids.

Yulia Tymoshenko’s step proves that the statements are not OK. Ukrayinska
Pravda found out that it was not Yulia Tymoshenko personally who wrote her
resignation.

Many people consider this nuance inessential. However, these people must
have forgotten that in 2000 Mrs. Tymoshenko vacated her seat in parliament.
In 2001 BYuT leader was restored in a deputy status because her statement
was written by somebody else.

Mrs. Tymoshenko is too tactful to hastily submit such a document to the
Verkhovna Rada Secretariat.

All this suggest unfavorable forecast regarding an early election but.

Besides public actions there are hidden factors proving that an early
election is inevitable. Regional branches of the Socialist Party received
thousands leaflets with Yushchenko, Tymoshenko and Lutsenko and an
inscription: “Who poisoned Tsushko? Tsushko was poisoned because he
did not let tanks enter Kyiv.”

Even socialists have accepted the imminent beginning of an election
campaign.                                            -30-
————————————————————————————————
LINK: http://www2.pravda.com.ua/en/news/2007/6/9/8015.htm

————————————————————————————————
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18. UKRAINE’S EURO-ATLANTIC FUTURE: INTERNATIONAL FORUM I
                    Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday-Wednesday June 11-13, 2007

News Release: Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic Future
New York, New York, Kyiv, Ukraine, June 2007

NEW YORK – KYIV – Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic Future: International Forum I

will be held in Kyiv, at the Diplomatic Academy of Ukraine, on June 11-13 2007.

The three-day conference will bring together more than 80 government and
non-governmental representatives from among Ukraine’s neighbors and
partners, including the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany,
the Netherlands, Poland, Russia, the Slovak Republic, Turkey, United Kingdom
and United States.

The forum program consists of eight plenary sessions, eight focus sessions
and two roundtable discussions.

During the first roundtable, Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic future will be examined
from the “Olympian perspective” by renowned foreign policy experts from
Germany, Poland, Russia, Ukraine and the United States. The second
roundtable will ponder Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic future and “the Russian
question.”

During the eight focus sessions, featured speakers, all of diplomatic rank,
will talk about Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic future from the Baltic, Visegrad,
Black Sea, Nordic and Western European perspectives. A separate session

will focus on the energy dimension of Euro-Atlantic integration.

The first four plenary sessions will assess Ukraine’s progress toward
meeting Euro-Atlantic external political standards, internal political
standards, economic standards and security standards.

The remaining four plenary sessions will examine the possible effects of
Euro-Atlantic integration on Ukraine’s diplomacy, politics and society,
economy and security.

The forum’s sponsors include the Embassy of Ukraine to the United States,
American Foreign Policy Council, Center for US-Ukrainian Relations,
Democratic Initiatives Foundation, Diplomatic Academy of Ukraine, Konrad
Adenauer Stiftung, NATO Information Centre/Ukraine, Open World Program

at the Library of Congress, Polish-Ukrainian Cooperative Initiative, The
Atlantic Council of the United States and the US-Ukraine Foundation.

Press accreditation for the event is required due to limited seating. Please
pre-register by June 9, 2007, 1800 PM.

For further information and pre-registration, kindly contact one of the
following individuals:
[1] Stephen Bandera, Forum Media Coordinator, sbandera@gmail.com
[2] Walter Zaryckyj, Forum Program Coordinator, Tele: 1 212 473-0839,

Fax: 1 212 473-0839, e-mail: waz1@nyu.edu or cusur1014@gmail.com
[3] Ilko Kucheriv, Forum Executive Coordinator/UA, Tele: 380 44 234 8046,
Fax: 380 44 581 3317, e-mail: ilko@dif.org.ua
[4] Svyatoslav Pavlyuk, Forum Executive Coordinator/EU,
Tele: 380 44 235 84 10, Fax: 380 44 235 84 11, e-mail: pauci@pauci.kiev.ua
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19. CONTAMINATED ZONE NEAR CHERNOBYL NUCLEAR
                            PLANT INTRIGUING BIOLOGISTS 
 
The Associated Press, Parishev, Ukraine, Friday, June 8, 2007

PARISHEV, Ukraine – Two decades after an explosion and fire at the

Chernobyl nuclear power plant sent clouds of radioactive particles drifting
over the fields near her home, Maria Urupa says the wilderness is encroaching.

Packs of wolves have eaten two of her dogs, the 73-year-old says, and wild
boar trample through her cornfield. And she says fox, rabbits and snakes
infest the meadows near her tumbledown cottage.

“I’ve seen a lot of wild animals here,” says Urupa, one of about 300 mostly
elderly residents who insist on living in Chernobyl’s contaminated
evacuation zone.

The return of wildlife to the region near the world’s worst nuclear power
accident is an apparent paradox that biologists are trying to measure and
understand.

Many assumed the 1986 meltdown of one reactor, and the release of hundreds
of tons of radioactive material, would turn much of the 1,100-square-mile
evacuated area around Chernobyl into a nuclear dead zone.

It certainly doesn’t look like one today.

Dense forests have reclaimed farm fields and apartment house courtyards.
Residents, visitors and some biologists report seeing wildlife – including
moose and lynx – rarely sighted in the rest of Europe. Birds even nest
inside the cracked concrete sarcophagus shielding the shattered remains of
the reactor.

Wildlife has returned despite radiation levels in much of the evacuated zone
that remain 10 to 100 times higher than background levels, according to a
2005 U.N. report – though they have fallen significantly since the accident,
due to radioactive decay.

Some researchers insist that by halting the destruction of habitat, the
Chernobyl disaster helped wildlife flourish. Others say animals may be
filtering into the zone, but they appear to suffer malformations and other
ills.

Both sides say more research is needed into the long-term health of a
variety of Chernobyl’s wildlife species, as governments around the world
consider switching from fossil fuel plants, blamed for helping drive global
climate change, to nuclear power.

Biologist Robert J. Baker of Texas Tech University was one of the first
Western scientists to report that Chernobyl had become a wildlife haven. He
says the mice and other rodents he has studied at Chernobyl since the early
1990s have shown remarkable tolerance for elevated radiation levels.

But Timothy Mousseau of the University of South Carolina, a biologist who
studies barn swallows at Chernobyl, says that while wild animals have
settled in the area, they have struggled to build new populations.

Far from thriving, he says, a high proportion of the birds he and his
colleagues have examined suffer from radiation-induced sickness and genetic
damage. Survival rates are dramatically lower for those living in the most
contaminated areas.

In explaining their starkly differing views, Baker and Mousseau criticize
each other’s studies as poorly designed.

But their disagreement also reflects a deeper split among biologists who
study the effects of exposure to radiation. Some, like Baker, think
organisms can cope with the destructive effects of radiation up to a point –
beyond which they begin to suffer irreparable damage. Others believe that
even low doses of radiation can trigger cancers and other illnesses.

In the Journal of Mammology in 1996, Baker and his colleagues reported that
the disaster had not reduced either the diversity or abundance of a dozen
species of rodents – including mice, shrews, rats and weasels – near the
Chernobyl plant.

“Our studies show that a dynamic ecosystem is present in even the most
radioactive habitats,” they wrote.

Baker’s group reported sighting red fox, gray wolf, moose, river otter, roe
deer, Russian wild boar and brown hare within a six-mile radius of the
plant – the most heavily contaminated area.

Genetic tests showed Chernobyl’s animals suffered some damage to their DNA,
Baker and his colleagues reported. But they said overall it didn’t seem to
hurt wildlife populations.

“The resulting environment created by the Chernobyl disaster is better for
animals,” Baker told the Associated Press in a phone interview.

Critics point out that Baker’s work has been funded by the U.S. Department
of Energy, which some view as pro-nuclear. Baker defended the government
connection, saying, “We have never been asked to come up with any specific
conclusions, just do honest work.” He also said his work has been
peer-reviewed.

Mousseau and his colleagues have painted a far more pessimistic picture.

In the journal Biology Letters in March, a group led by Anders Moller, from
Pierre and Marie Curie University in Paris, said that in a study of 7,700
birds examined since 1991 they found 11 rare or unknown abnormalities in a
population of Chernobyl’s barn swallows.

Roughly one-third of 248 Chernobyl nestlings studied were found to have
ill-formed beaks, albino feathers, bent tail feathers and other
malformations. Mousseau was a co-author of the report.

In other studies, Mousseau – whose work is funded by the National Science
Foundation and National Geographic Society – and his colleagues have found
increased genetic damage, reduced reproductive rates and what he calls
“dramatically” higher mortality rates for birds living near Chernobyl.

The work suggests, he said, that Chernobyl is a “sink” where animals migrate
but rapidly die off. Mousseau suspects that relatively low-level radiation
reduces the level of antioxidants in the blood, which can lead to cell
damage.

“From every rock we turn over, we find consequences,” he told the Associated
Press in a phone interview. “These reports of wildlife flourishing in the
area are completely anecdotal and have no scientific basis.”

While the experts debate, Maria Urupa, harvests tomatoes from her garden,
buys fish from the nearby Pripyat River and brews moonshine vodka.

Eating locally produced food is risky, health experts agree, because plants
and animals can concentrate radioactive materials as they cycle through the
food chain. Does she fear the effects of her exposure to radiation?

 
“Radiation? No!” she said. “What humans do? Yes.”          -30-
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20. PHOTOGRAPHER CAPTURES CHERNOBYL SINCE 1993

Thomas Keating, East Valley Tribune, Phoenix, Arizona, Sat, June 9, 2007

On April 26, 1986, the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant sent a plume of
radioactive fallout drifting over parts of the Soviet Union and Europe in
the most devastating accident in the history of nuclear power.

Large areas of what are now Ukraine, Belarus and Russia were badly polluted,
resulting in the evacuation and resettlement of hundreds of thousands of
people, as well as a bleak future for those contaminated.

Since 1993, Scottsdale photographer Kristina Brendel has been documenting
the devastation of abandoned towns and contaminated areas in the hope that
people won’t overlook what happened 21 years ago.

“People forget,” Brendel said. “There is a new tragedy every day, but the
old hurts remain. Chernobyl came up again last year, during the 20-year
anniversary, making a day or so blip on the news radar. My goal is to make
sure this is not completely forgotten.”

Achieving that goal has been a passion project for Brendel, who never sold
a photo until she arrived near the disaster site in 1992.

Brendel got her first photography job on the visit: She was enlisted to
document the work of a humanitarian group helping with disaster relief in
the Chernobyl area. Fascinated by the sheer desolation, she has traveled
back four times.

Each time, she has gone “into the Zone,” referring to the Zone of
Alienation, the 30-kilometer exclusion area around the site of the Chernobyl
nuclear reactor disaster.

Each time she has taken pictures, capturing the changes to the site over the
years in the hope it will one day get better.

“This project has been my project,” Brendel said. “I take other pictures, I
do other work, but this is the only one that has carried on. And it
continues because the problem is not solved. I don’t have any solutions,
but I am trying to raise awareness.”

Brendel said she has seen some heartbreaking things. Children’s shoes,
scattered and abandoned, representing all of the kids who may have to battle
cancer from the radiation they were exposed to.

Also, the farmers whose lives were torn apart as they were forced to move to
cities and start over. “It’s overwhelming,” Brendel said, “a total vacuum.”

She described the rows of houses that used to be the place where “everything
was supposed to be OK” for these people. “Now everything has fallen down,
a safe haven – gone,” she said.

One of the worries of outsiders entering the Zone is exposure to radiation.
Brendel said a person receives about as much radiation from one day there as
they would encountering an airport X-ray scanner.

“It’s only those who spend long periods of time near the heavy radiation
point who are the ones in danger of long-term effects,” she said.

In April, during the 21st anniversary of the Chernobyl accident, Brendel’s
exhibition of black-and-white photos from inside the Zone joined the
permanent collection of the Chernobyl Museum in Kiev, Ukraine.

Her work has already toured Belarus – the former Soviet state hit hardest by
the disaster – because it lay in the path of the wind in the week after the
reactor exploded.

Brendel was invited by the Belarusian Museum of Modern Art to exhibit her
collection as its featured artist during the 20th anniversary commemoration
of Chernobyl last April.

On top of this, a trilingual book featuring Brendel’s photo exhibition has
been published in Minsk, the capital of Belarus, where she has an apartment
on Karl Marx Street.

But Brendel is not satisfied with her recent success. In July, she will
return to the site, and yet again, go into the Zone. Knowing that children
are being exposed every day to radiation, Brendel has been inspired to keep
working.

When she opened her exhibit at the Chernobyl Museum in Kiev, a choir made up
entirely of people who had been evacuated from the contaminated areas sang
at the opening. “I heard that they were coming, but when I saw them, I was
surprised at how young they were,” she said.

Brendel said she hopes her work will have a lasting effect in helping to
solve the dilemma that the surrounding contaminated areas still face to this
day.

“It ruined the lives of hundreds of thousands of people, and they’re still
around,” she said. “Everyone has a chance to rebuild.”          -30-
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http://www.eastvalleytribune.com/story/91268?source=rss&dest=STY-91268
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21. “ORANGE” DRAINS COLOR FROM REAL-LIFE UKRAINE DRAMA

 
Frank Scheck, Reuters/Hollywood Reporter, New York, NY, Fri, Jun 8, 2007 
 
NEW YORK – Potentially fascinating subject matter receives awkward
treatment in Andrei Zagdansky’s documentary about the 2004 presidential
election in Ukraine and the so-called “Orange Revolution” that followed the
disputed results.

Despite such dramatic elements as the near-fatal poisoning of the one of the
candidates and a censored television broadcaster surreptitiously revealing
the truth via sign language for the deaf, “Orange Winter” is strangely
tedious. The film recently received its U.S. theatrical premiere at New
York’s Pioneer Theater.

Even American audiences nonversed in Ukrainian politics will no doubt recall
the poisoning of candidate Viktor Yushchenko with dioxin, resulting in his
severe facial scarring.

The pro-Western opponent of the government-supported Viktor Yanukovich

(the outgoing president, fearful of being brought up on corruption charges,
wanted a hand-picked successor), he was defeated in an election that was
universally seen as corrupt.

For the next two weeks, citizens took to the streets in mass demonstrations,
adopting the color orange as a show of support for the defeated candidate.
Their efforts resulted in a recount that got Yushchenko installed in office.

Unfortunately, the innate drama of the events is diluted here by the
filmmaker’s unimaginative approach and the droning narration.

Even running a scant 72 minutes, the film is unnecessarily padded, to less
than relevant effect, with extensive clips from the classic silent film
“Earth” and scenes from operas that were performed in the city during the
events in question.                                    -30-

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LINK: http://www.reuters.com/article/filmNews/idUSN0826582720070608
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22.                       SCHOOL OF HATRED
                                  Galaciaphobia: Myths and Facts

By Oleh BAHAM, an expert at the Mohyla School of Journalism
The Day Weekly Digest, Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, June 5, 2007

In the past few years, approximately since the time of the Ukraine without
Kuchma action of 2001, some Ukrainian and Russian mass media have
started waging another vigorous anti-Galician campaign.

The first campaign of this kind took place in 1989-94, when Galicia
(Halychyna) was the hub of the national renaissance and state-building
movement.

In both cases, this is an aggressive reaction of the Muscophile and “Little
Russian” segments of Ukrainian society. In both cases, it is a revival of
old Russian stereotypes and myths that portray Galicians and Galicia as
something totally alien to Ukraine, hostile, destructive,
“bourgeois-nationalistic,” etc.

In reality, both then and now Galicia is a status symbol of the entire
Ukrainian national movement that Moscow has always feared as something that
can thwart its imperial ambitions and claims. Demonizing Galicia has always
sought to present the Ukrainian movement as marginal, pathological, and
menacing.

There are two main factors behind today’s mounting anti-Galician campaign.

First, the Party of Regions is trying to reinforce its external propaganda
by reanimating old Soviet anti-Ukrainian myths and slogans, like “Down with
fascist henchmen” and “No to bourgeois nationalism,” although these two
slogans are complete nonsense from the standpoint of historical truth and
national logic.

Second, the past few years (since Vladimir Putin came to power in Russia)
have seen fierce geopolitical and strategic competition for Ukraine, in
which the national weakening of our state occupies by far the most crucial
place.

While the Party of Regions uses anti-Galician (read: anti-Ukrainian)
propaganda mostly for tactical purposes, trying to whip up emotions and
enlist the support of the Russian and Russified residents of Easternern and
southern Ukraine, whose mentality is still full of anti-Ukrainian
stereotypes, Moscow has embarked on an anti-Galician crusade with the
strategic goal to split Ukraine regionally and weaken it through internal
conflict.

Anti-Galician stereotypes in Ukraine have other, deeper, roots. First of
all, the nation spent a long time under the leveling pressure of the Russian
Empire, a well-run “melting pot” that generated a specific phenomenon
known as the “Ukrainian Little Russian mentality” (or “Creole mentality,”
according to Mykola Riabchuk).

Today, outright rejection of Galicia’s social traditions has formed within a
considerable part of Ukrainian society – the dominant part, which has a
powerful impact on the shaping of current government policies, cultural and
social values, and which remains under the protracted mental, ideological,
and cultural influence of Russia.

This is the reason why there are secret instructions against Galicians and
all things Galician, such as the hounding of Galician politicians, freezing
of economic and business contacts with the region, and tendentious
misinformation, while the central media, not to mention those in Eastern
and southern Ukraine, mostly report negative or, at best, neutral but never
positive, information about Galicia. This creates the overall impression of
an area described as being “almost totally depressed,” “backward,” and
“hopelessly provincial.”

On the one hand, this is an objective phenomenon because the difference
between Creole-type consciousness (post-imperial,
inferiority-complex-ridden) and Galician (nation-centered, civic) is too
great for such a hidden conflict not to exist. On the other hand, it carries
within it the clear threat of a split in the nation.

The press, academic publications, and television have featured so many
anti-Galician materials in the past few years that it would take a separate
monograph to review them. So I will try to analyze only the main, most
deeply rooted, and rabble-rousing stereotypes that distort Galicia’s image
and essence in Ukraine’s informational, political, and cultural space.

Since they are mostly rooted in the traditions of Russian great-power
imperialist ideology, they require historical and scholarly analysis. Let us
look at Galicia as a distinct phenomenon of culture and mentality.

 
The chief stereotypes in the negative assessment and perception of Galicia
are as follows:

1) In terms of civilization and mentality, Galicia is alien to and dangerous
to the Eastern Slavic (read: Russian) civilization and culture and,
therefore, Ukraine itself.

2) Galicia has always been part of the Church Union; it is too open to the
West and thus has a corrosive effect on the Eastern Slavic Orthodox
civilization.

3) Galicia and Galicians were excessively spoiled by Polish culture and thus
are utterly alien to the rest of Ukraine.

4) In the 19th century Galicia became an oasis, a “laboratory” of sorts, of
the modern Ukrainian nation, and it “infected” the rest of Ukraine with
nationalism, thus breaking the “sacred” unity of the Russian and Ukrainian
peoples.

5) In the last quarter of the 19th and the early 20th century Galicia
stemmed the Muscophile movement, the ideology and policy of the “true
champions of fraternal Slavic unity,” which dealt an irreparable blow to the
monolithic Eastern Slavic union.

6) Galician writers and cultural figures exerted a negative influence on the
new Ukrainian culture, “befouled” the Ukrainian language with foreign
Galician dialects and “incongruous” esthetic components.

7) During the interwar period and World War Two, Galicians formed the
OUN-UPA, a very “aggressive bourgeois nationalist movement” that
collaborated with the German occupiers, relentlessly fought against the
USSR, and thus won the dubious distinction of being “traitors” and
“fratricides.”

8) Having been affected with the above-mentioned “poisons” – Middle European
(Austro-Hungarian) and Polish spirit, the Church Union, nationalism, and a
categorical anti-Moscow stance – Galicia preserved its traditions and
identity even in the Soviet era; it did not bow to Moscow and was not
mentally Russified; instead, it strengthened, becoming a kind “Carpathian
Croatia,” an eternal bulwark and enemy of the Orthodox Eastern Slavic world
(even though the latter took the form of an atheistic and communist USSR).

Let us now elucidate the causes and ideological foundations of the
anti-Galician stereotypes in the same sequence:

1. True, in terms of mentality and civilization, Galicia posed a threat to
the “Eastern Slavic civilization,” but only in the sense that this kind of
civilization does not exist.

The fake vision of this civilization emerged in the imperial ideology of the
19th-century Russian Slavophiles (Ivan Kireevsky, Aleksei Khomiakov,
Konstantin Aksakov, Nikolai Danilevsky, et al) who tried to substantiate the
right of Russia to own Middle Europe (from Poland to the Balkans) and
developed the idea of “Moscow as the Third Rome” with its claims to being
“the only center of Orthodoxy” and the right to fight for Constantinople
(Istanbul), i.e., the right to pursue an aggressive foreign policy.

That this required the complete assimilation of the empire’s two other great
Slavic peoples – the Ukrainians and Belarusians – was a foregone conclusion.

This is why the imperial doctrine did not show any greater contempt and
disgust for anybody but these two – allegedly “fraternal” – peoples, for
they “disturbed” the empire’s internal unity. In reality, the “Eastern
Slavic civilization,” i.e., Kyivan Rus’, a superpower that was united for a
short time by the Varangians (the Normans, who established several states in
Europe through conquest), disintegrated in the 12th century, when three
large geopolitical centers – the Polotsk Principality, the Novhorod Land,
and the Volodymyr-Suzdal Principality – seceded, one by one, from the
central Kyivan Principality.

This was a natural fact in all the three main dimensions – geopolitical,
national, and mental/civilizational. The Baltic geopolitical circle “drew
away” Polotsk and Novhorod. The Great Eastern European Plain became
the cradle of the future Muscovite Principality, while the Black Sea coastal
area shaped the future space of Ukraine.

In ethnological terms, the Belarusians (Polochans and Dregoviches) were a
symbiosis of Baltic and Slavic ethnoses, the Novhorod people were a mixture
of Balts, Veneds, Slovens, and proto-Finns, the Muscovites were a union of
Slavs and various Finno- Ugric peoples, and the Ukrainians were a symbiosis
of Slavs and Sarmatian Scythians.

In the dimension of mentality and civilization, Polotsk and Novhorod
experienced a strong cultural influence of the Baltic macroregion and
Scandinavia; Muscovy – Turkic nomads; and Ukraine – the Mediterranean
(Byzantine Empire) and Central Europe (the Balkans, Hungary, and Poland).

The differences between Muscovy, Ukraine, and Belarus became especially
evident in the 14th-17th centuries, when the latter two were part of the
Grand Duchy of Lithuania and the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth.

It was the time when Ukraine and Belarus experienced the powerful influence
of Catholicism, the ideas of the Renaissance, and Baroque culture. The
nobility formed its own ethics, a specific moral code based on the Western
aristocratic and knightly spirit.

Urban culture was on the rise: cities were granted the Magdeburg Law.
Muscovy could not endure this. Although the closeness of the three Eastern
Slavic languages was preserved, this was due to the great role of the Old
Church Slavonic spiritual, cultural, and written-language tradition rather
than to some mystic affinity among these peoples.

Closeness of languages that have a great cultural tradition is a typical
phenomenon in world history. For example, the Romance languages (Italian,
Spanish, Portuguese, French, and Romanian) are very closely related, and
Arabic is a common language for very different peoples from Morocco to
the Persian Gulf, and so on.

The problem of both Belarus and Ukraine was that, after they were annexed
by Russia in the 18th century, Moscow relentlessly destroyed all these
socio-cultural and spiritual traditions and forcibly imposed the Russian
language and culture on them.

In this space, Galicia (along with Transcarpathia and Bukovyna) remained the
only island free of coercive Russian “influences,” above all, because it
became part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire in 1772. This is why its
civilizational and psychological difference from the rest of the gigantic
Russified space is so pronounced.

But this natural distinction fully corresponds with the social structure,
culture, and spirituality of Central Europe – the world between the Baltics
and the Balkans, between the Alps and the Black Sea. The roots of this world
are hidden in the depths of people’s hearts, so all kinds of differences in
Belarusians and Ukrainians continued to emerge whenever Russian pressure
eased.

2. The second myth concerns the “accursed” Church Union of Galicia. Indeed,
the assessment of and attitude to the Union have a mystical, superstitious,
and fanatical nature in Russia. The reason is that Moscow embraced too
sincerely and blindly the teachings of Greek fugitives about its exclusive
“mission” in saving the Orthodox world from the “Latinizers” and “infidels.”

This geopolitical role dovetailed perfectly with the idea of the “Third
Rome,” i.e., the strategy of establishing a pivotal imperial political
Eurasian center in Moscow. This why Russia has always considered the Union
as the most perfidious and effective blow to the unity and strength of the
Orthodox world.

Thus, all things related to the Union were literally demonized and
interpreted as a “sacrilege” and mystical “crime” against the spiritual
foundations of Orthodoxy. Meanwhile, what was ignored was the fact that the
Church Union was a natural phenomenon for all Central European peoples
because it proceeded from their psychological and philosophical background
and the principle of openness to West and East.

As long ago as the 12th century, the princely and boiar elite of Kyivan Rus’
adhered to the concept of a dialogue with the Roman Church. The ideology of
the Union ran through the Ukrainian church milieu throughout the 13th-17th
centuries.

The Union of Brest in 1596 was a qualitatively new and strategic step of the
Ukrainian Church to respond to the challenges of history: the church
embraced Western theological schooling, which at the time was of a much
higher quality than the Orthodox one; it opened up to the progressive world
of ideas, synthesized the influences of Renaissance culture (which gave rise
to the phenomenon of Ukrainian Baroque), and at the same time preserved its
own Byzantine rite, customs, liturgy, and language, thereby becoming a
decisive factor of Ukrainian nation building.

Contrary to the Polish political elite’s expectations, the Uniate Church did
not become a “bridge” for converting the Ukrainians and Belarusians to
Catholicism. Instead, it only cemented Ukrainian- Belarusian society and
made it more mobile. The Uniate Church became a truly national church.

Even the fact that this church structurally revived and gradually won a
prevailing position throughout Right-Bank Ukraine after the reign of Bohdan
Khmelnytsky, when the Cossacks essentially destroyed it, shows its special
organizational dynamics and wholesome directions of development.

As early as the 18th century, both Poland and Russia regarded the Uniate
Church as the main threat to their domination in Ukraine and therefore were
bent on destroying it. In the 19th century, and especially between the 20th
century’s two world wars, the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church was not only
a reliable bastion of Ukrainian spirituality and the national idea but also
an active and influential religious structure, which, in terms of clergymen’s
education, level of theological thought, and the influence of high-quality
rites on the proliferation of the true faith in society, was the equal of
the most powerful national churches of Central Europe.

This occurred at a time when the Russian Orthodox Church was the principal
tool and ideologue of the mass-scale denationalization of Ukrainians in the
rest of Ukraine. So the Union could only exert a “bad” and “corruptive”
influence on Ukraine in the sense that it showed the illustrative example of
a dynamic national church as a source of the nation’s increasing
spirituality.

3. The third myth is that Poland “spoiled” Galician. Galicia was as much
“spoiled” by Poland as Slovakia was by Hungary, which dominated this

Slovak nation for over 1,000 years, Bohemia by Germany, Slovenia and
Croatia by Austria, Bulgaria by Turkey, and Ireland by Britain.

In all these cases, centuries- long colonization of these nations indicates
only that they managed not only to resist the pressure of the dominant
nations for such a long time and finally gain their independence, but also
create a distinct culture, strengthen their national character, and preserve
a high level of spirituality and social mobility.

That the conquered nations borrowed some psychological, social, behavioral,
cultural, and linguistic features from the conquerors while preserving their
deeply rooted national particularities and traditions attests to the complex
and multifaceted nature of their ethnic structure rather than their
“inferiority” or “backwardness.” The once enslaved nations are in no way
worse than the former dominant nations in terms of sociopolitical mobility
and creative potential.

In other words, the Polish social and cultural influences that Galicia
experienced could not prevent it from preserving its inner Ukrainian
essence: it managed to resist the extremely powerful assimilationist
pressure of the Poles and harden its national character.

By all accounts, all nations develop in a never-ending, broad dialogue with
each other. Thus, more often than not foreign cultural influences can play a
positive, encouraging, and enriching role. Suffice it to recall the cultural
wealth England that once took from its conquerors, the Franco-Normans,
France from Italy, Spain from the Arabs, etc.

 It is only the blinkered and xenophobic strata of the population that can
regard the spiritual and social interrelations of peoples as “illness,”
“loss,” etc., without seeing in this the great stimulating function of
international existence.

The myth of the Polish “bane” (recall the works of the great imperial
Russian writer Fedor Dostoevsky, in which all the Polish characters are
portrayed as highly demonic enemies of the “Orthodox world” or simply
wretched milksops) gained such high currency in Russia’s imperialistic and
chauvinistic propaganda because Poland, with its extremely developed
culture, dauntless spirit of Catholicism, and brilliant and militant
aristocracy and nobility, was the main obstacle to Russia’s domination over
Central Europe. In other words, the point is not in the “bad” Poles but in
Russia’s imperial pretensions.

4. It is illogical to accuse Galicia of spreading nationalism all over
Ukraine because it was precisely Dnipro Ukraine that offered Galicia the
first and main impetus to national development. Ivan Kotliarevsky, the
Romantic poets, Mykhailo Maksymovych, Taras Shevchenko, Panteleimon
Kulish, Oleksandr Konysky, Ivan Nechui-Levytsky, Mykhailo Drahomanov,
and Mykhailo Hrushevsky were the chief leaders and inspirers of the 19th-
century Galician national renaissance.

In the 20th century, they were joined by Dmytro Dontsov, Viacheslav
Lypynsky, Yevhen Malaniuk, Yurii Lypa, Oleh Olzhych, and others. Galicia
became the center of the national movement only because it was freer within
the framework of the Austrian constitutional monarchy, and there was no
relentless imperial pressure on the part of Russia, allegedly the
Ukrainians’ “greatest Slavic brother.”

By all accounts, the Galicians carried out the nation-forming program, as
did every former conquered and oppressed European nation. The Czechs,
Slovaks, Lithuanians, Estonians, Latvians, Bulgarians, Romanians, and others
have also resorted to the same forms and methods of national mobilization
and cultural renaissance in order to become full-fledged nations.

There was no “wolfish” nationalism in Galicia: its nationalism was as
militant as the repression of the conquerors was aggressive.
         (TO BE CONTINUED IN THE NEXT ISSUE OF THE DAY)
————————————————————————————————-
LINK: http://www.day.kiev.ua/182433/
————————————————————————————————-

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AUR#851 Jun 1 Ukraine’s Democracy Gasps For Air; Lawmakers Miss Deadline; Ukraine On The Edge; WTO Legislation Passes; Tatar Deportation; Gazprom

=========================================================
ACTION UKRAINE REPORT – AUR           
                 An International Newsletter, The Latest, Up-To-Date
                     In-Depth Ukrainian News, Analysis and Commentary

                      Ukrainian History, Culture, Arts, Business, Religion,
         Sports, Government, and Politics, in Ukraine and Around the World       

                        
ACTION UKRAINE REPORT – AUR – Number 851
Mr. E. Morgan Williams, Publisher and Editor, SigmaBleyzer
WASHINGTON, D.C., FRIDAY, JUNE 1, 2007 

               –——-  INDEX OF ARTICLES  ——–
            Clicking on the title of any article takes you directly to the article.               
   Return to the Index by clicking on Return to Index at the end of each article
1.                  UKRAINE LAWMAKERS MISS CRISIS DEADLINE                    
By Dario Thuburn, Agence France Presse, (AFP), Thu, May 31, 2007
 
Memo from Kiev: By Steven Lee Myers, The New York Times

New York, New York, Friday, June 1, 2007
International Herald Tribune, Paris, France, Thu, May 31, 2007

4.                                 UKRAINE: ON THE EDGE
LEAD EDITORIAL: Financial Times
London, United Kingdom, Wed, May 30 2007

5.         UKRAINE’S PARLIAMENT PASSES ALL LAWS NEEDED
                             TO MEET WTO REQUIREMENTS 

AP Worldstream, Kiev, Ukraine, Thursday, May 31, 2007

6.        UKRAINIAN MPs GIVE PRELIMINARY APPROVAL FOR
                      PARLIAMENTARY ELECTION FINANCING

ICTV television, Kiev, in Ukrainian 0945 gmt 31 May 07
BBC Monitoring Service, United Kingdom, Thursday, May 31, 2007

7.                       UKRAINE: NOTHING IRREVOCABLE
COMMENTARY: By Dmitry Shusharin
RIA Novosti political commentator, RIA Novisti
Moscow, Russia, Thursday, May 31, 2007

8.   UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT ADDRESSES CROATIAN PARLIAMENT
HINA news agency, Zagreb, Croatia, in English 1529 gmt 31 May 07
BBC Monitoring Service, United Kingdom, Thursday, May 31, 2007

9.                          THREE UKRAINIANS = FIVE DRIVERS

UkrAgro Outlooks and Comments, Kyiv, Ukraine, Thu, May 31, 2007

10.                        REGIME RESTORATION AND UKRAINE
LETTER-TO-THE-EDITOR: By Dan Fenech
Kyiv, Ukraine, Thursday, May 31, 2007
Action Ukraine Report (AUR) #851, Article 10
Washington, D.C., Friday, June 1, 2007

11.     WHY PEOPLE CHOOSE TO WRITE ABOUT BAD MEMORIES?
                    Or thoughts after reading Vladimir Matveyevs article
                  “WWII Anniversary Conjures Up Some Bad Memories”
COMMENTARY: By Olha Onyshko, Co-producer
Documentary: “Galicia: Land of Dilemmas,” American University
Published by the Action Ukraine Report (AUR) #851, Article 11
Washington, D.C., Friday, June 1, 2007

12UKRAINE: AN OVERVIEW OF THE CRIMEAN QUESTION AT THE
       63RD ANNIVERSARY OF THE CRIMEAN TATAR DEPORTATION
ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: By Idil P. Izmirli
Adjunct Faculty/Ph.D. Candidate, George Mason University
The Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution
Published by the Action Ukraine Report (AUR) #851, Article 12
Washington, D.C., June 1, 2007

13. MARINA LEWYCKA’S FIRST BOOK, BETTER LATE THAN NEVER
        
Lewycka’s first book was rejected 36 times before she finally found a
                publisher at age of 58. Now “A Short History of Tractors in
              Ukrainian” is a worldwide hit. She talks to Stephen Moss about
                   family ties, that tricky second novel – and never giving up.
INTERVIEW: With Author Marina Lewycka
BY: Stephen Moss, The Guardian
London, United Kingdom, Thursday, May 31, 2007

14.                     AN APPEAL TO THE LEADERS OF THE G7

STATEMENT BY HUMAN RIGHTS LEADERS: Moscow, Russia
Andrew Grigorenko, General Petro Grigorenko Foundation
New York, New York, Friday, June 1, 2007
15RIVNE REGIONAL COUNCIL ASKS YUSHCHENKO TO ASSIGN
  POSTHUMOUSLY HERO OF UKRAINE TITLE TO UPA COMMANDER
            SHUKHEVYCH AND UNR DIRECTORY HEAD PETLIURA 
Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Thu, May 31, 2007

16.        RUSSIA: GAZPROM HONES ITS STRATEGY ON UKRAINE
By Roman Kupchinsky, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL)
Prague, Czech Republic, Wednesday, May 30, 2007

17.       RUSSIAN LANGUAGE IMPORTANT FOR ENRICHMENT OF
                   PEOPLE WORLD OVER SAYS FOREIGN MINISTRY
ITAR-TASS, Moscow, Russia, Monday, May 28, 2007
========================================================
1
       UKRAINE LAWMAKERS MISS CRISIS DEADLINE
                    
By Dario Thuburn, Agence France Presse, (AFP), Thu, May 31, 2007

KIEV – Ukrainian lawmakers failed to pass a series of laws in time for a
deadline set by President Viktor Yushchenko on Thursday, prolonging a
political crisis in the ex-Soviet republic.

The votes were a precondition for Yushchenko to set early elections expected
on September 30 after a deal struck with his rival, Prime Minister Viktor
Yanukovych. Yushchenko had given lawmakers until midnight on Thursday to
vote.

But the deputy speaker of parliament, Adam Martynyuk, declared the session
over and said the legislature would meet again on Friday in defiance of the
president’s orders.

Observers have warned that failure to pass the legislation on time could
plunge Ukraine into turmoil again by scuppering the deal between the feuding
leaders.

The crisis in Ukraine began on April 2, when Yanukovych defied orders from
Yushchenko to dissolve parliament and hold early elections. The president
meant to stop what he called a power grab by the prime minister’s allies.

Yushchenko earlier expressed confidence that lawmakers would meet the
deadline on Thursday but also said that elections could still be held even
if they failed to do so.

He said opposition deputies in parliament from his Our Ukraine party and the
Yulia Tymoshenko Bloc could simply resign their posts, triggering polls
within 60 days.
               SERIES OF WTO AMENDMENTS APPROVED
Lawmakers on Thursday did approve a series of amendments liberalising trade
rules to smooth Ukraine’s entry into the World Trade Organisation (WTO) that
were also part of the crisis deal. But they failed to agree on other
legislation governing the elections.

Yanukovych’s Regions Party holds a majority in parliament in a coalition
with the Socialist and Communist parties, while Yushchenko’s allies are in
opposition.

Ukrainian newspapers on Thursday warned of a return to political chaos.
“Parliament fell apart in full session,” ran a headline in the Kommersant
daily, referring to the heated disputes between Yushchenko and Yanukovych
allies in parliament the evening before.

“The political deal has fallen through,” daily Izvestia said.

Tensions escalated sharply last week, when the president and prime minister
sparred for control over security forces and scuffles broke out at the
prosecutor general’s office.

The two sides put on a show of unity after the political deal on Sunday to
hold early elections. But tensions still simmered this week and numerous
disagreements remain.

The rivalry between Ukraine’s leaders dates back to the Orange Revolution of
2004, when mass protests helped bring pro-Western Yushchenko to the
presidency, overturning a flawed vote initially granted to Moscow-backed
Yanukovych.                                            -30-
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[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
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2.     DEAL ON NEW VOTE IN UKRAINE NOW IN DOUBT

By Natasha Lisova, Associated Press Writer
Kiev, Ukraine, Thursday, May 31, 2007

KIEV, Ukraine – A hard-won agreement between Ukraine’s rival leaders to hold
new elections this fall was cast into doubt Thursday as parliament ended its
session hours ahead of a presidential deadline to pass legislation
supporting the deal.

Meanwhile, Interior Minister Vasyl Tsushko, a central figure in the
political standoff between the president and prime minister, was flown to
Germany for treatment after his condition worsened following a heart attack,
the ministry said.

President Viktor Yushchenko and Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych agreed
Sunday to elect a new parliament Sept. 30, easing tension amid a persistent
power struggle in the ex-Soviet republic, but efforts to pass laws governing
the vote have foundered this week amid mutual recriminations.

Yushchenko, who had been calling for a much earlier vote before the
compromise deal, said Thursday his allies would withdraw from parliament if
the laws were not approved by midnight – a move he said would trigger a new
election in two months.

“If a solution is not reached, my party and (Yulia) Tymoshenko’s party will
meet and formalize our withdrawal from parliament,” Yushchenko said during a
visit to Croatia. “Then elections will take place automatically in 60 days,”
he added.

But parliament, dominated by Yanukovych’s majority coalition, ended its
session without approving the legislation. Coalition members vowed to return
Friday.

The head of Yushchenko’s faction in parliament, Vyacheslav Kyrylenko,
accused the coalition of violating the agreement and said it “must take all
responsibility for future development of events on itself”.

He also said that 172 opposition lawmakers had registered their resignations
at the parliamentary secretariat, an initial step toward quitting
parliament.

The resignation of 151 lawmakers is required to dissolve parliament and
force elections in 60 days, but a leading Yanukovych ally suggested his camp
would resist any attempts to hold a vote in that time frame.

“It is impossible to hold any early elections if the package of bills is not
adopted by parliament,” said lawmaker Taras Chornovil.

Ukraine has been embroiled in a political crisis since Yushchenko issued on
April 2 a decree to dissolve the parliament and to call early elections.
Yanukovych and his governing coalition called the order illegal and appealed
against it to the Constitutional Court.

Sunday’s pre-dawn agreement eased concerns the standoff could escalate into
violence after Yushchenko fired the prosecutor-general and the Interior
Ministry – headed by Tsushko – sent police to prevent him from being evicted
from his office.

Yushchenko then claimed control of ministry’s forces and sent some to the
capital, although Tsushko refused to recognize the order.

The Interior Ministry said Wednesday that Tsushko had suffered a heart
attack, and ministry spokesman Kostyantyn Stogniy said late Thursday that he
had been transported to Germany because his condition had worsened.

Stogniy gave no further details.

Yushchenko on Wednesday called the move to send police forces to the
prosecutor’s office a “serious crime” and said Tsushko was responsible.

Yushchenko and Yanukovych were bitter rivals in Ukraine’s 2004 presidential
election. Yanukovych was declared the winner of a fraud-riddled vote that
sparked mass protests known as the Orange Revolution.

Yushchenko won a court-ordered rerun of the balloting, but Yanukovych
returned to prominence last year when his party won the largest share of
seats in parliament.                                  -30-
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[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
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3.                              STALLED BY CONFLICT,
                UKRAINE’S DEMOCRACY GASPS FOR AIR

Memo from Kiev: By Steven Lee Myers, The New York Times
New York, New York, Friday, June 1, 2007
International Herald Tribune, Paris, France, Thu, May 31, 2007

KIEV, Ukraine, May 31 – Two and a half years ago, the “Orange Revolution”
promised Ukrainians a freer, more democratic system of government. Instead,
the country now finds itself mired in perpetual political crisis, punctuated
by confusion, chaos and, at times, comedy.

In April, President Viktor A. Yushchenko issued a disputed decree dissolving
Parliament. That led to charges, countercharges and dueling protests between
the country’s warring camps, led by Mr. Yushchenko on one side and the prime
minister, Viktor F. Yanukovich, on the other.

On Wednesday, for example, protesters gathered outside the headquarters of
the prosecutor general, a member of Mr. Yanukovich’s party whom the
president had already fired two times.

Drawn by rumors of an imminent assault by government commandos, they
blockaded the leafy streets while their leaders issued instructions on how
to resist and warned of nefarious NATO plans to subjugate the nation. “We
don’t want to be imprisoned by America, like Yugoslavia was,” one protester
said.

Inside, a dozen members of Parliament occupied a landing by the elevator,
vowing to protect the prosecutor general, Svyatoslav M. Piskun. “Give me the
Constitution,” one deputy demanded, and then thumbed through the one
produced in search of some legal justification for all of this.

Mr. Piskun, who has accused Mr. Yushchenko of criminal conduct for
exceeding his constitutional powers, has refused to step down.

The president, in an interview, accused him in turn of politicizing the
justice system. He had already appointed somebody else to the post, only to
have his decree, like most of late, ignored.

The country’s leaders agreed early last Sunday morning to end a prolonged
political impasse by holding new parliamentary elections, the second in less
than two years. But that agreement, which appeared to be unraveling on
Thursday, has done little to resolve the underlying disputes.

They include an unclear division of power between a weakened presidency and
an empowered Parliament; allegations of corruption in Parliament and the
courts; and a lack of mature democratic institutions able to emerge from the
shadows of the oversize political personalities who dominate Ukrainian
politics.

The result has been not only endless conflict, but also public apathy,
tinged with disappointment, which even the country’s leaders acknowledge
having caused.

“We started a kind of judicial game, using the flaws of our laws,” Mr.
Piskun said in his barricaded building, referring to legal challenges that
have been swirling around him. “We make people lose trust in the judicial
system.”

Ukraine is immeasurably freer than it was in 2004, when President Leonid D.
Kuchma tried to orchestrate the fraudulent election of a successor, Mr.
Yanukovich, setting off protests that led to a new election, won by Mr.
Yushchenko.

One measure of that is that Mr. Yanukovich’s Party of Regions won enough
seats last year in parliamentary elections to make him prime minister.
Ukraine, though, has failed to consolidate its democracy, even as it has
embraced the theatrics of democratic politics.

Protests abound, though often with paid protesters, as do the tents that in
2004 filled Independence Square, known as the Maidan. So, ominously, do
political threats and brinkmanship.

Those activities nearly resulted in violence when Interior Ministry troops,
following orders from the interior minister, a Yanukovich loyalist, occupied
Mr. Piskun’s office after the president tried to dismiss him. Mr. Yushchenko
then declared the ministry’s military forces under his command, and the top
uniformed commander declared his loyalty to the president.

The interior minister, Vasyl P. Tsushko, was hospitalized Wednesday,
reportedly with a heart ailment. On Thursday, a member of his Socialist
Party declared that the minister had been poisoned by his opponents,
implicitly Mr. Yushchenko’s supporters.

Poison is a motif of Ukrainian politics, the most notable case being Mr.
Yushchenko’s poisoning before the 2004 vote. That crime remains unsolved,
an emblem of Ukraine’s uncertain embrace of the rule of law. The twist is
that Mr. Yushchenko is now accused of abusing the law.

That stems from his decision – with the parliamentary majority led by Mr.
Yanukovich growing and members of his own party defecting – to issue a
decree dissolving Parliament in April on narrow grounds that members were
switching parties, which he called “an issue of political corruption.”

His opponents assailed the move as unconstitutional, but when they took the
matter to the Constitutional Court, Mr. Yushchenko dismissed 3 of the
court’s 18 judges, accusing them of corruption.

The Constitutional Court, Mr. Piskun retorted indignantly, is “the backbone
of democracy.” He acknowledged that there might have been justification for
Mr. Yushchenko’s charges, but he said there was a judicial and parliamentary
process for resolving them.

Mr. Yushchenko defended his actions, though he appeared subdued, even
resigned. “I would like to emphasize this is not a political crisis,” he
said of the turmoil surrounding the prosecutor’s office. “It is just a
reality of political life in Ukraine.”

Ukraine remains a deeply divided country, with a large Russian-speaking
population that has bristled at Mr. Yushchenko’s embrace of the European
Union and NATO at the expense, as widely seen, of fraternal ties with
Russia.

Increasingly, though, the divisions appear less substantive and more
political and personal.

Kostyantyn Gryshchenko, a former foreign minister and an adviser to Mr.
Yanukovich, said that the Yanukovich camp was equally committed to
integrating Ukraine into the global economy and, eventually, into the
European Union, though NATO remains unpopular. Instead, he said, elections
increasingly turn on personalities.

“People here vote most likely for the leader whom they like,” he said in an
interview. “I would hesitate to say trust, but like is the right word.”

Others said that Ukrainian politics had simply become a struggle over access
to business. “Having power gives you the instruments to do business,” said
Oleksandr O. Moroz, who became speaker of Parliament after breaking with Mr.
Yushchenko’s camp last summer. “They are fighting for power to obtain these
instruments.”

The biggest concern in Ukraine is that elections are unlikely to
significantly change the makeup of Parliament. They could simply prolong the
failures to bolster the institutions necessary to allow democracy to
flourish, including prosecutors and courts independent of presidential
decrees and street protests.

Without institutional changes, said Anatoly K. Kinakh, who became minister
of the economy after defecting from Mr. Yushchenko’s camp this year, “this
election will not produce any better quality of democracy.”          -30-
—————————————————————————————————–

—————————————————————————————————–
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/06/01/world/europe/01ukraine.html?pagewanted=1&_r=1,
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[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
========================================================
4.                            UKRAINE: ON THE EDGE

LEAD EDITORIAL: Financial Times
London, United Kingdom, Wed, May 30 2007

The political peace deal struck in Ukraine in last-minute talks between
Viktor Yushchenko, the president, and his bitter rival Viktor Yanukovich,
the prime minister, comes as a welcome relief.

Their long-running conflict last week reached the point of violence, with
officials loyal to Mr Yushchenko occupying the public prosecutor’s office
and Mr Yanukovich’s men breaking windows and doors to retake the
building. It seemed only a matter of time before somebody was killed.

However, the agreement to settle the dispute by holding parliamentary
elections in late September will not, on its own, resolve Ukraine’s
deep-rooted divisions. The country is doomed to further instability, unless
its leaders work much harder at developing a genuine national consensus.

It will be difficult. When Mr Yushchenko triumphed in the Orange Revolution
in 2004 he appeared to have won broad support for a pro-European Union
democracy, with an open economy and pragmatic ties with Russia.

But the settlement that ended the Orange Revolution involved transferring
power from the presidency to parliament. When Mr Yanukovich bounced
back in the 2006 election, thanks to his Russian-speaking support in the
east, Mr Yushchenko was wrong-footed.

Until this year, the conciliatory president was on the defensive, to the
despair of his supporters. But in April he finally put his foot down, and
ordered new elections. Mr Yanukovich resisted, precipitating last week’s
confrontation.

The trouble is that elections will do little to change the power balance
between the two sides. Mr Yanukovich will almost certainly return as head of
the largest party, followed by the fiery Yulia Tymoshenko, Mr Yushchenko’s
erstwhile Orange Revolution ally. The president may well end up holding the
balance of power, and they will be forced to sit down and negotiate.

The outlines of a compromise exist. Most Ukrainians back closer ties with
the EU, but they also have doubts about joining Nato.

Almost all agree Russia will continue to play a big role in Ukraine, above
all in energy, although they are divided about the merits of Moscow’s
influence. As a buffer zone, the country cannot afford to tip too far
towards Russia or the west.

One thing must be clear, however: all parties must respect the legacy of the
Orange Revolution, which has created a more democratic political world.
Any attempt to resolve political conflicts through non-democratic, let alone
violent, means would split the country irrevocably.                -30-
———————————————————————————————–
http://www.ft.com/cms/s/294b0b90-0e4a-11dc-8219-000b5df10621.html
————————————————————————————————

[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
========================================================
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5. UKRAINE’S PARLIAMENT PASSES ALL LAWS NEEDED 
                           TO MEET WTO REQUIREMENTS 
AP Worldstream, Kiev, Ukraine, Thursday, May 31, 2007

KIEV – Ukraine’s parliament on Thursday passed all the laws needed to meet
the World Trade Organization’s admission requirements.

The 450-seat Verkhovna Rada approved 11 bills, including legislation
governing customs tariffs on metals and scrap; a law on food security and
quality; and changes to a law protecting intellectual property.

Ukraine said in December that it had brought its legislation into line with
WTO requirements, but the 150-nation global trade rules body has since made
new demands.

President Viktor Yushchenko has made joining the WTO a priority for Ukraine,
which needs foreign investment to boost its economy. Prime Minister Viktor
Yanukovych has said he hopes the ex-Soviet republic could join the WTO this
year.

Socialists and Communists, who now are in the ruling parliamentary
coalition, have opposed some of the measures, fearing the impoverished work
force could suffer by aggressively opening the country up to foreign trade
and WTO standards.                               -30-
————————————————————————————————

[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
========================================================      
6.  UKRAINIAN MPs GIVE PRELIMINARY APPROVAL FOR
                   PARLIAMENTARY ELECTION FINANCING 
ICTV television, Kiev, in Ukrainian 0945 gmt 31 May 07
BBC Monitoring Service, United Kingdom, Thursday, May 31, 2007

KIEV – Parliament has voted in the first reading for changes to the budget
to allow financing for a snap parliament election. Presenting the bill,
First Deputy Prime Minister Azarov said that the government found 75m
dollars for the election.

The text of the budget amendments indicates that the election should not be
held earlier than 29 September 2007. Parliament speaker Oleksandr Moroz
suggested that the amendments should be approved in the second reading on 1
June.

On 31 May, President Viktor Yushchenko extended by one day his suspension

of his parliament dissolution decree to allow MPs to vote on the necessary
legislation.

The following is the text of a report by Ukrainian ICTV television on 31
May:

[Presenter] Before leaving Ukraine [for visit to Croatia on 31 May], the
president [Viktor Yushchenko] extended the work of parliament for one more
day. MPs should consider 17 issues today – laws on the WTO, on the binding
mandate [banning MPs from moving from one faction to another], changes to
the election law, and changes to the budget on election financing.

MPs have already adopted the election financing law in first reading. Then a
break was announced. We will find out from Viktor Soroka whether the sitting
has restarted.

[Correspondent] MPs from the [pro-government] coalition and opposition have
already returned to the hall after their forced break. But they have
quarrelled again and walked out again. They have left the hall and dispersed
among the corridors and buffets, in order to discuss how to proceed.

One thing is clear. The coalition is ready to work not just today, but until
2009. The Communists and Socialists announced again that they do not want

an early election, so they do not want to provide budget money for financing
the election campaign.

Meanwhile, the Party of Regions thinks a little differently. In particular,
representatives of the Cabinet of Ministers have found the 365m hryvnyas
[75m dollars] needed for the election.

[First Deputy Prime Minister Mykola Azarov] The bill foresees a separate
budget programme for the Central Electoral Commission to the value of 365m
hryvnyas for preparing and holding an early parliament election.

[Volodymyr Makeyenko, captioned as parliament budget committee head] I
recall once again the formulation that is being put to the vote: to
establish that spending on the budget programme for holding an early
parliament election should be carried out if an early parliament election is
called not earlier than 29 September 2007.

[Correspondent] However, the Communists and Socialists are standing their
ground. They do not want to make money available for the election.

They are ready to amend the budget and allocate additional funds for the
countryside and raising pensions, student grants and public sector wages, in
particular for law enforcers and the armed forces.

But they are not ready to give money for holding an election campaign or
organizing the election campaign. Parliament speaker Oleksandr Moroz thinks
the same or almost the same.

He proposed voting on changes to the budget only in the first reading, which
is what happened. And the second reading vote will be not today, but
tomorrow.

[Presidential representative in parliament Roman Zvarych] This surprises me
because his signature is on the joint statement of the president, prime
minister and parliament speaker. It is clear from the speeches of the
Communist and Socialist factions and from the fact that they asked for a
break that they will not vote for this law.

[Opposition Yuliya Tymoshenko Bloc MP Volodymyr Yavorivskyy] You are
consciously dragging out and undermining all agreements. It’s all clear.
It’s all on the surface. Oleksandr Oleksandrovych, put this document to the
vote as a whole.

[Correspondent] The opposition insists that the president has once again
made concessions to the coalition in order to have the maximum level of
understanding and suspended his dissolution decree for one more day in

order that it could vote on all the necessary bills. But the coalition did not
hear the president and are consciously inflaming the situation.

Only one out of 17 bills has been adopted in the first reading. In addition
to laws on social and economic development and changing the budget, there
are 10 bills that should speed up Ukraine’s WTO accession.         -30-
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7.                        UKRAINE: NOTHING IRREVOCABLE

COMMENTARY: By Dmitry Shusharin
RIA Novosti political commentator, RIA Novisti
Moscow, Russia, Thursday, May 31, 2007

MOSCOW – Triumvirates worked well for ancient Rome, albeit never survived
for long. The triple alliance of President Viktor Yushchenko, Prime Minister
Viktor Yanukovych and Parliament Speaker Alexander Moroz was formed
under the pressure of an imminent armed conflict, and consequently implied
no parity.

It was clear from the very beginning that the president and prime minister
would keep their offices, while the speaker would probably have to go. His
opponents have been quite open about it.

However, the problem is deeper than the three politicians’ prospects. It
looks like Ukraine’s political culture in general does not require strict
observance of agreements, especially of bizarre ones like the “triple
union.”

None of its parties could guarantee commitment, because none of them
possessed any levers to pressure the Rada members into acting within the
outlined framework.

The three officials have eventually failed to find common ground.

Yanukovych confessed to having disagreements with Yushchenko and
demanded the extension of parliament’s session by more than two days so
that it would have time to pass a series of socio-economic development
bills.

Moroz, the main trouble-maker, predictably threw out the agenda, thus
violating the triple agreement.

The above is evidence that democracy actually reigns in Ukraine. The triple
deal was made for a reason, and was a good thing for the time being. The
three politicians seemed to realize that their brawl could grow into an
armed conflict, and armed people would be almost impossible to control.

When the president and the interior minister issue mutually exclusive
orders, regular army commanders turn into field commanders. But the
politicians who allowed this to happen will be held responsible for the
consequences.

That is why the Ukrainian president, prime minister and speaker chose to
strike a union deal, feeble as it was. But their agreement was not confirmed
by any procedures. The parliament-dissolving decree was never considered
by the Constitutional Court.

Moreover, the triple agreement excluded the Constitutional Court’s
contribution to the settlement of the crisis. And of course, no laws
stipulate that a parliament session should last for a specified period of
time and strictly adhere to a specific agenda.

Despite the odd situation, the three politicians have attained their most
important goal – they have avoided the armed conflict scenario. As for the
prospects, it has become clearer than ever that Ukraine is a lucky country
which abhors final decisions.                                 -30-
————————————————————————————————
The opinions expressed in this article are the author’s and do not
necessarily represent those of RIA Novosti.
————————————————————————————————
LINK: http://en.rian.ru/analysis/20070531/66415343.html

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[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
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    NOTE: Send in a letter-to-the-editor today. Let us hear from you.
========================================================
8. UKRAINIAN PRES ADDRESSES CROATIAN PARLIAMENT

HINA news agency, Zagreb, Croatia, in English 1529 gmt 31 May 07
BBC Monitoring Service, United Kingdom, Thursday, May 31, 2007

ZAGREB – Ukraine fully supports Croatia’s aspirations to join the European
Union and NATO, and Croatia is an example of a successful, reborn nation in
the whole region, President Viktor Yushchenko said in the Croatian
parliament on Thursday.

Like Croatia, Ukraine too sees its future in united Europe, he said, adding
that the EU and NATO were strategic goals for his country, confirmed in
legislation.

He described his visit to Croatia as the opening of new possibilities and
prospects of cooperation. Apart from cooperation in Euro-Atlantic
integration, he said Ukraine was particularly interested in a closer
political and social dialogue.
                               ECONOMIC COOPERATION
Yushchenko also mentioned economic cooperation, saying it was increasingly
stronger and more dynamic. Last year’s trade exceeded 120m dollars, whereas
in 2003 it amounted to 43m dollars, he said.

Ukraine’s President added there were many areas for cooperation, including
investment, industry, agriculture, construction, and the transport and
tourist infrastructure. He said Ukraine was also interested in the joint oil
pipeline Druzba Adria project.

Yushchenko also spoke of the thousand-year-old history of the Croat and
Ukrainian peoples, recalling they had become brothers at the time of the
White Croat tribe.

He said relations between the two countries experienced a renaissance in
1991, after “the demolishing of the empire”, and recalled that Ukraine had
been among the first to recognise Croatia’s independence.
CALL TO RECOGNIZE HOLODOMOR AS ACT OF GENOCIDE
He said the two peoples had supported one another during social upheavals,
and called on the Croatian parliament to recognize the Holodomor, the
1932-33 famine, as an act of genocide against the Ukrainian people.

Our people will be grateful to receive such a decision, as an example of
support and moral assistance, Yushchenko said.
Speaking of the crisis in his country, he said Ukraine’s politics resolved
the hardest problems in a democratic fashion and that this tradition would
remain constant.

For me, every success and every test oriented towards democracy is an
important part of Ukraine’s renaissance, he said.
            CRITICIZED UKRAINE’S TOTALITARIAN PAST
Underlining the importance of democracy, reconstruction and the healing of
society, Yushchenko criticized his country’s totalitarian past, recalling
that dozens of millions of Ukrainians had been victims of communist terror.

He was also received by Parliament Speaker Vladimir Seks for talks on
bilateral relations and common strategic interests.

Seks thanked Yushchenko for saying in his address to the Croatian
parliamentarians that the opinions of ecologists and the public should be
taken into consideration with regard to the Druzba Adria project. The
Ukrainian president agreed that broad political support was necessary for
its implementation.                                  -30-

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NOTE:  Subheadings inserted editorially by the AUR.
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[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
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9.                   THREE UKRAINIANS = FIVE DRIVERS
 
UkrAgro Outlooks and Comments, Kyiv, Ukraine, Thu, May 31, 2007

One cannot be clever, kind, and beautiful in Ukrainian policy any more. It
is possible only drive now. It’s up to you. Inspired by the President’s
example, everybody is driving now.

The President himself is driving, he appoints whom he wants and dismisses
whom he wants. The main thing for him is suddenness of his next steps, an
unexpected turn of the helm and a feeling that the helm is still in hand.

The Prime Minister is driving too. Rumors that he also contributed to the
new turn of the Ukrainian political crisis look like being true.

As it is well known, Mr. Yanukovich, after an arrangement with Mr.
Yushchenko on the day of the ill-fated elections had been already achieved,
took the liberty to twice publicly doubt that this elections would be held.

Why? Because he is dragging out time, – according to the same rumors,
Yanukovich has no chance of getting either the Prime Minister’s office or
the faction leader’s chair after the coming elections of the new Verkhovna
Rada.

The Regions Party’s financiers will most likely gamble on other figures
(nomination of Boris Kolesnikov is discussed, ambitions of Raisa Bogatyriova
are taken into account), thus in the situation where every miller draws
water to one’s own mill, Mr. Yanukovich decided to draw this water a little
to his mill, too. Well, let a person who is without a sin cast an egg at
him.

The speaker of the Parliament is also driving. Despite all statements of Mr.
Moroz that the Verkhovna Rada’s activity is quite legitimate, since lately
he does not sign any of the laws passed by the legitimate Rada.

These include the law on the Budget amendments, which is a trump-card of the
«regionals» (as this law prescribes an increase in wages and social payments
they need as the ruling party before the election).

It is said that this step of the speaker is caused by his desire to make the
«regionals» include Moroz himself and a couple dozen certainly no-go
socialist men in the Regions Party’s list at the future election.

The honest Tsushko is driving, – a man about whom no dirt could be dug up
even after six months of searching (obviously, for it is absent indeed).

Most likely, this man is ruling just due to his natural conscientiousness
and yet because he, a poor guy, has no way to go out from the submarine –

no desire to become the chief of a Moldavian collective farm again.

Of course, the overall driving started not today but yet at the time of that
“orange” Maidan, when both people and the authorities realized that they
could get through with bawling and push.   It’s unclear where all this may
end up: many predict a force way.

However, it is unlikely: yet at the time of “that” Maidan it was wittily
noticed that the average statistical Ukrainian participates in a revolution
only if he is absolutely sure that a plate of fatty rich borsch will wait
for him home tonight after the barricades. In short, there will be no
shooting while borsch is served.                          -30-
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[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
========================================================
10.               REGIME RESTORATION AND UKRAINE

LETTER-TO-THE-EDITOR: By Dan Fenech
Kyiv, Ukraine, Thursday, May 31, 2007
Action Ukraine Report (AUR) #851, Article 10
Washington, D.C., Friday, June 1, 2007

Morgan,

FYI, I thought I’d share with you my message to the Kyiv Post editor
(forwarded below), since you published a longer version of Mr.
Velychenko’s article in AUR today.

Rgds/Dan

PS:  Keep the AURs coming!  I spend way too much time reading them,
but don’t how I’d ever keep up with what’s going on without them.
———————————————————————————————-
From: Dan Fenech
Sent: May 31, 2007 11:28 AM
To: kpletters@kyivpost.com
Subject: Article “Regime Restoration and Ukraine”

LINK: http://www.kyivpost.com/opinion/oped/26691/

Dear Editor,

I read with interest Mr. Velychenko’s comments about potential regime
restoration in Ukraine (“Regime restoration and Ukraine”, May 30
2007).

However, while he accurately describes the Party of Region’s use of
American consultants such as Paul Manafort (a former consultant for,
amongst others, some Republican Party candidates), I don’t understand
why Velychenko inserts his apparent anti-American and anti-Republican
Party hatred into his otherwise observant article.

By making blatantly false statements such as “US Republicans also used
dubious and outright illegal methods to bring George W. Bush into power,”
he damages the credibility of  his other arguments.

He can legitimately criticize Manafort (as do I), but there’s no reason to
drag the rest of the Republican Party or all Americans  into his arguments.
After all, we are talking about Ukraine, aren’t we?

Dan Fenech
Kyiv, Ukraine
———————————————————————————————-
[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
========================================================

11. WHY PEOPLE CHOOSE TO WRITE ABOUT BAD MEMORIES?
                      Or thoughts after reading Vladimir Matveyevs article
                    “WWII Anniversary Conjures Up Some Bad Memories”

COMMENTARY: By Olha Onyshko, Co-producer
Documentary: “Galicia: Land of Dilemmas,” American University
Published by the Action Ukraine Report (AUR) #851, Article 11
Washington, D.C., Friday, June 1, 2007

RE: “WWII Anniversary Conjures Up Some Bad Memories”
Article By Vladimir Matveyev, JTA, New York, NY, May 3, 2007
Action Ukraine Report #845, Article 13, Monday, May 21, 2007

I grew up in Lviv, Ukraine, in a family where it was the custom to close the
curtains before you turn on the light. My grand parents did it because
“ruski” used to shoot through the windows. My parents did it because “ruski”
spy through the windows.

During the short winter days I would come back from school wearing my red
pioneer “halstuk”, crawl to the window and do the house routine, so
mysterious “ruski” wouldn’t harm me. Only then would I turn on the light and
read my favorite “ruski” authors. This was in the beginning of eighties.
    “RED” VETERANS CAME TO MY SCHOOL TWICE A YEAR
Everything I learned at home was from overhearing the family talk about what
“ruski” have done again. Each conversation would end with the adults
realizing I was listening and immediately they would follow with, “don’t
even think to repeat it to anybody” or “forget it, or we end up in the
devil’s land”. I hated the “red” veterans.

They used to come to my school twice a year and talk about their heroic
attacks on Germans. Then they would ask whose grandparents were fighting
the fascists.

So that one time I decided to tell what I heard at home many times: my
grandpa was in the Polish army, he was sent to Germany as a spy just before
the war started, but was captured and send to the concentration camp.

He tried to escape, but dogs found him. The second time he made it as far
as the train station, but was reported. He survived though weighting only 42
kilos. He still had horrible stomach pains sometimes and our family menu
was based on what grandpa could eat, and I loved my grandpa. It was my
story.
“RED” VETERAN ANNOUNCED MY GRANDPA WAS A TRAITOR
The “red” veteran listen without stopping me, but then he announced to the
entire class that my grandpa was a traitor and if he did not kill himself
and gave himself up he deserves to be shot.

At home I was announced a traitor and got a slap from my father for wanting
to send the entire family “to the devil’s land”. Then my parents had to make
visits to school, bringing with them some documents about my grandpa and
saying grandpa was always making jokes and what I said was “false”.  Then
I had to apologize to the class for being a liar.

I was not trusted any more at home and I was not trusted at school. I was
different. I was not “ruski” and I was not “red”. This was becoming a core
of my identity.

I felt very lonely and misunderstood, there was nobody in the world whom I
could explain to about what was wrong, I couldn’t betray my family again.

My lessons learned from that experience: I associated that one “red”
veteran with the rest and disliked them all, I also did not feel any
compassion to any of the tragedies done to “ruski” during the WWII.  I
became oblivious.

It took me years to understand that I should not blame all the Russians for
whatever one person said.  It took me years to heal from the hate for
generalized Russians, who I blamed for all the misfortunes of my family:
loosing land, loosing relatives, whose graves you can only visit at night,
loosing opportunity to study journalism.

Things were building up and so was my imagination. I have to admit I went
so far as to justify in my head why the Russians did not deserve to live on
planet earth.
 “YOU UKRAINIANS, KILLED MY FAMILY, YOU KILLED JEWS”
Till one day, as they say what goes around comes around. In 1992 I was an
exchange student in U.S.  It was in North Carolina, just after the brake up
of the Soviet Union. My host family took me to the supermarket.

They met their good friend and immediately introduced me as a student from
the new country called Ukraine. Their friend’s reaction was rather strong.

“You, Ukrainians, killed my family, you killed Jews” – he screamed.  It
seemed to me at that moment the entire store went quiet and started
starring.  I was shocked.

Till that day I believed we – the Ukrainians were the biggest victims of the
war.  We were the only one who suffered while nobody did anything to help.
Now I met somebody who seemed to hate me or my people more than I
ever hated Russians, but for what?

It took me years to make sense for myself of what had happening in this
region.  I am still learning and the more I know the less accusations and
generalizations I have.

As British historian Norman Davis told me in the interview “In this part of
the region nobody suffered more and nobody suffered less – everybody
suffered the same”.

During the Second World War two huge mega powers Nazi Germany and
Soviet Russia were using the national differences in order to manipulate
people and send them to fight each other instead resisting the occupation.

The ethnic conflicts that took place during that time were an atrocious and
horrifying part of what is considered today as one of the biggest wars in
the history of mankind.
THOSE WHO HELPED THOSE OF DIFFERENT ETHNIC ORIGIN
There were also people who did not allow themselves to be affected by these
brainwashing  techniques, people who helped others, who fought, who did
not degrade morally. The ordinary people who showed extraordinary
courage.

Unfortunately, there are still too many stories are awaiting to be told,
especially the stories of people who risked or gave their lives in order to
save others of a different ethnic origin.

Another big picture we tend to forget: all the veterans – Soviet and UPA –
were fighting first of all against Germany.  Even the few thousand
Ukrainians who fought for the Germans during the first two months
eventually became their victims. Each Ukrainian family, regardless of its
nationality had lost somebody to that war.

During the WWII Jews lost 7 millions, Ukrainians and Russians and others
of the Soviet Republics – 20 million lives.  Most of the war was on the
territory of Ukraine. The devastation is still hard to recover.

Unfortunately, there is no objective history written about that war that
would include the point of view of each ethnic group involved.

Because of that the bits of this painful history still can be used to
manipulate and produce new wave of generalizations that trig into
stereotypes, blame and hate.
             QUESTION RAISED IN MY HEAD WAS ‘WHY’?
So the question raised in my head after reading Vladimir Matveyevs article
“WWII ANNIVERSARY CONJURES UP SOME BAD MEMORIES”
was :WHY?

Why would a person  write  in a casually accusational way without thinking
of the feelings and memories may be evoken, without much care to the
sensitivity of the issue?

But then, after rereading this “WWII ANNIVERSARY CONJURES UP
SOME BAD MEMORIES” one starts to have some sad memories of the
techniques used by the old Soviet propaganda machine.

That “Razdelyaj i vlastvuy” “know how” was and is responsible for people
still being hostile against each other 60 years after the war.

It is responsible for both the Ukrainian-phobia and the anti-Semite
sentiment. That “good old” propaganda machine was so effective it even
made people incapable of being compassionate towards each other.

The really sad fact is that there are not that many publications that try to
explain what really happened in that part of the world.
PASS THE LEGACY OF HOSTILITY TO THE NEXT GENERATION
Instead yet another article that aims to make the old survivors of these
horrific events to be more hostile against each other. And on a top of this
it looks like Mr. Matveyev attempts to pass the legacy of hostility on to
the next generation.

Again, it is important to remember that the war was not provoked by the
local people who had differences and could not co-exist with each others.

It was rather a huge confrontation between two mega-powers who
understood that as long as the population would be busy with people
fighting each others, there would be no threat towards them.

For the memory of all that died in that horrible war and out of the respect
to the ones still alive we have to look more closely at what happened not
through propaganda glasses, but with eyes of humanity, tolerance and
honesty.

Hate is not the answer. Or is it?
—————————————————————————————————-
RE: “WWII Anniversary Conjures Up Some Bad Memories”
Article By Vladimir Matveyev, JTA, New York, NY, May 3, 2007
Action Ukraine Report #845, Article 13, Monday, May 21, 2007
http://www.jta.org/cgi-bin/iowa/news/article/20050503InUkraineWWIIann.html 

—————————————————————————————————–
FOOTNOTE: Subheadings inserted editorially by the AUR.
—————————————————————————————————–
  “GALICIA: LAND OF DILEMMAS” VIDEO WINS A TOP PRIZE AT
                 AMERICAN UNIVERSITY”S VISIONS FESTIVAL
     Explores inter-ethnic conflicts during WWII in Galicia-Western Ukraine

By Morgan Williams, Publisher and Editor
Action Ukraine Report (AUR) #841, Article 4
Washington, D.C., Thursday, May 10, 2007

WASHINGTON – On Friday, May 4th 2007, as part of American University’s
Visions Festival, the video installation ‘Galicia: Land of Dilemmas’ won
first place in the category of best installation.

The project, created by Olha Onyshko and Sarah Farhat, explores inter-ethnic
conflicts during the Second World War in the region of Galicia-Western
Ukraine.

The video was shown, to around eight viewers at a time, in one of the
University’s small photography labs. The installation in the lab recreated a
Ukrainian basement of 1942 filled with all sorts of old Ukrainian artifacts
and household items, as well as food like potatoes, onions and dried herbs.

The smell, the confined setting and the cramped space bought one back in
time in order to experience the fear and uncertainty of the people who were
hiding in similar places during WWII.

The innovative visual style of the video was used to re-create the way a
person remembers images and recalls events while telling a story.

The tension built up while watching the video increases even more through
sounds of children whispering, parents hushing, doors slamming and dogs
barking outside.

“The purpose of the project is to raise awareness about the issues of ethnic
identity and relations during periods of crisis and war,” said Olha Onyshko,
one of the two filmmakers.

“The moving story of Ukrainian and Jewish neighboring families, told in
public for the first time 60 years after it happened, shows that tragic
moments of conflicts can bring out the worst and the best in people and
leaves us to wonder: why would people put their own lives in danger to
save their enemies?” Onyshko stated.

The two filmmakers are currently working on producing a feature-length
documentary with the same name that will explore the human side of ethnic
conflicts based on stories from the Ukrainian, Jewish, Polish and Russian
communities in Galicia.

“Events that happened 60 years ago are still relevant in today’s society;
that is why it is necessary to find a common language between people of
different ethnicities so that the horrors that happened will not be
repeated,” according to Olha Onyshko.              -30-
———————————————————————————————–
CONTACT: Olha Onyshko olia@verizon.net
———————————————————————————————–
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========================================================
12.  UKRAINE: AN OVERVIEW OF THE CRIMEAN QUESTION AT THE
       63RD ANNIVERSARY OF THE CRIMEAN TATAR DEPORTATION

ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: By Idil P. Izmirli
Adjunct Faculty/Ph.D. Candidate, George Mason University
The Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution
Published by the Action Ukraine Report (AUR) #851, Article 12
Washington, D.C., June 1, 2007

May 18, 2007 marked the 63rd anniversary of a grave tragedy. On that day
that left a dark spot on the history of humanity in the [former] Soviet
Union, Crimean Tatars in their entirety were deported from their peninsular
homeland under Stalin’s orders.

 Deportation was carried out by 20,000 interior ministry troops and
thousands of regular army soldiers,[i] who went door to door to wake up
sleeping Crimean Tatars and give them only 15 minutes to get ready before
being exiled to unknown destinations. During that time, Crimean Tatars
constituted approximately one fifth of the [Soviet] partisans who were
involved in guerilla warfare in Crimea.[ii]

Moreover, most of the able-bodied Crimean Tatar men were at the front
fighting the Nazis. As a result, the majority (86.1 percent) of the
deportees consisted of the elderly, invalids, women and children.[iii] This
mass deportation on guarded cattle-trains without food, water, and inferior
sanitary conditions, resulted in a substantial death toll. During and after
the exile, 46.2 percent of the total Crimean Tatar population perished.

Three months after the deportation, on August 14, 1944 the State Defense
Committee (GKO) authorized the settlement of 51,000 new migrants in 17,000
vacant collective farms (kolkhozes) to replace the deported Crimean
Tatars.[iv] Although some of these settlers were Ukrainians, the vast
majority of them were ethnic Russians[v] who had arrived in Crimea from
Russian lands.

While the systematic Russification of the peninsula was taking place
rapidly, with a decree published on June 30, 1945,[vi] the Crimean ASSR was
officially abolished and it became an oblast (district) within the RSFSR.

In the mean time, according to the orders of the Communist Party of the
Soviet Union (KPSS), Crimean Tatars were “to live in exile forever with no
right to return to the former residence.”[vii]

The surviving deportees were placed in highly regimented strict special
settlement camps (spetsposolonets) in their respective exile countries.
Crimean Tatars were forced to live in these camps where they had no freedom
of movement without the permission from the camp commanders.

This special settlement regime lasted for 12 years until the 20th Communist
Party Congress in February 24-25, 1956, when Nikita Khrushchev[viii]
condemned Stalin’s crimes in his famous [secret] speech that led to the
abolishment of special settlement camps throughout the Soviet Union.

A special [unpublished] decree issued on April 28, 1956 the Presidium of
Supreme Soviet (Ukaz 136/142) officially released the Crimean Tatars from
special settlement camps.

As soon as they were released, through their Initiative Groups, the Crimean
Tatars launched a nonviolent national movement that was solely focused on
return to Crimea. This return movement first began with individual letter
writing campaigns and continued with group protests in Tashkent, Uzbekistan
as well as in front of Kremlin in Moscow.

Despite the top-down pressures, Crimean Tatars continuously demonstrated,
went on hunger strikes, and protested against the Soviet regime demanding
permission for return to Crimea. The struggle for return took many years.

During that time, many Crimean Tatar national movement members, including
the head of the OKND (Organization of Crimean Tatar National Movement)
Mustafa Cemilev, were beaten up, jailed, and even killed. The movement for
return proceeded regardless.

Against the background of political dynamics of Perestroika, a new
commission formed under Genadii Yanaev recognized the forced deportations
as being illegal and criminal. In addition, the commission agreed on the
restoration of the Crimean autonomy. This decision was a major turning point
for the Crimean Tatars as they organized the beginnings of an [unofficial]
mass return to Crimea.

The 1989 Soviet census showed the number of Crimean Tatars in Crimea as
38,000. At the present time, it is estimated that at the present time
approximately 300,000 Crimean Tatars are living in Crimea.[ix]

Life in Crimea was not easy for the returnees. In their historical homeland,
they faced discrimination in socio-political spheres vis-à-vis land/housing
allocations, employment and power-sharing. Their desire for restoration of
historical justice continuously fell on deaf ears. Regardless, they remained
peaceful. As they often stated “they came to Crimea to build, not to
destroy.” Yet, the Crimean dynamics are a changing.

Since the 2004 Ukrainian presidential elections, as the political combat is
taking place between the two Viktors at the center, the Crimean crisis at
the periphery is getting out of hand. While Kiev is dealing with its own
political issues, Simferopol is being run by certain Russian-backed Crimean
politicians who are playing an important role in the magnification of
ethnic, cultural, religious, and linguistic cleavages in the peninsula.

Who are these instigators of conflict in the Crimean peninsula? Which
Crimean political actors are the frequent faces in most of the conflictual
events? In an effort to answer these questions, let us review several
Crimean conflicts that took place in 2006 which appeared to be unrelated but
in reality undoubtedly interrelated.

In the early mornings of May 28, 2006 the American warship ‘Advantage”
arrived in the Feodosian Trade Port as a part of an International military
exercise “Sea-Breeze 2006.” Upon their arrival, American soldiers were
countered with strong anti-NATO protests. In reality, these types of
joint-exercises have been taking place in Ukraine since 1997,[x] but in 2006
this exercise suddenly became a tool for showdown of the Russian-backed
groups.

These groups included the “Russian Block/Russkii Blok (RB)” under the
leadership of Oleg Rodiviliov; The Russian Community/Russkaya Obshina Krima
(ROK); the Communists; the Party of Regions; The Block for Yanukovych (Za
Yanukovicha),[xi] Progressive Socialist Party, “State”, Descendents of
Bogdan Khmelnitskiy” and Crimean Cossack[xii] Union, Skinheads, and the
National opposition: the Natalia Vitrenko Group.

During these so called anti-NATO protests, under the watchful eyes of the
Ukrainian law enforcement agencies (including BERKUT), the Russian flag
bearing protestors carried signs with writings such as “NATO – Worse than
Gestapo,” and “We are not Yankees, we have to turn to our brothers – the
Russians,” and burned American flags.

Although these protests in Feodosia were illegal under the Ukrainian
Criminal law (page 293) “Violation of Community Order,”[xiii] the Crimean
law enforcement agencies chose not to interfere.

After a month of protests, when the American ship had to leave Feodosia,
the administrator of the MVD (Ministry of internal Affairs) of Ukraine in
Crimea, Vladimir Homenko, declared that the military officers that were
assigned to Feodosia events were passive.[xiv]

One of the organizers of these protests was the well-known deputy of the
Crimean Upper Parliament, Oleg Rodivilov, who is also the president of the
permanent commission of Crimean AR that deals with culture, youth issues,
and sports. Rodivilov is not a stranger to conflicts in Crimea.

He is one of the organizers of the November 2005 anti-Yushchenko
demonstrations that took place in the Lenin Square of Simferopol during the
first year anniversary of the Orange Revolution.

During those protests, Rodivilov’s Russian Blok Party called for president
Yushchenko and his wife “the American” to leave the Ukraine and go to the
United States by continuously chanting: “Suitcase, Train station,
America/Chemadan, Vokzal, Amerika.”

Although the two events seemed unrelated, Rodivilov’s Russian Blok was also
the instigator of the July 8, 2006 attack on Crimean Tatar who organized a
nonviolent sit-in in front of the Azizler (Saints) holy site in the Crimean
city of Bahcesaray.

The Azizler area in Bahcesaray includes the mosque of Aziz Malik Ashter, and
three historical grave sites (turbes) of the former Crimean khans of Giray
Mehmet II (1584); Giray Saadet II (1590); and Giray Mehmet III (1629).

This significant Crimean Tatar holy place in Bahcesaray was being used as a
city bazaar for several years. In this location, in the midst of this holy
site, the market referred by Crimean Tatars referred as the market “built on
bones,” the noisy market stalls with cursing and bargaining merchants who
were using the turbes as garbage collection sites were offensive for the
Tatars as it would be for any religious site of any religion. The returnees
were trying to resolve this issue using appropriate state channels for the
last 10 years.

At the end of June 2006, when the court decided not to relocate the market
to another site in Bahcesaray, frustrated Crimean Tatars started to organize
a sit-in protest in front of the market. Since the younger returnees have to
work at some capacity to feed their families, these protestors were composed
of mostly older women and men.

As a result, when the Russian Blok, the Cossack union and the skinheads
attacked on these protestors and beat them up with iron sticks and clubs,
most of these elderly were among the 15 critically wounded Crimean Tatars
who were remained hospitalized for extended periods of time.

Also among the wounded were a Crimean Tatar news reporter and a television
cameraman whose camera was broken while trying to film the events. Although
these attacks were videotaped and the assailants’ faces were clearly
visible, no charges were brought against them.

In fact, no charges were brought upon anybody, including the market’s
director Medvedev,[xv] who was videotaped (and later was shown on Channel
10, KRIM television channel) while beating of an old Crimean Tatar with an
iron stick.

On the other hand, a well-known member of the Crimean Tatar National
movement Kurtseid Abdullayev presently is fulfilling his 8-year jail
sentence in a Ukrainian prison for his “alleged” breaking up a camera of a
television journalist during the Crimean Tatar field protest in Simeiz in
2004.

While the Azizler attacks were taking place under the watchful eyes of
Ukrainian BARS and BERKUT police forces, the aggressors were also

shouting the slogans from the signs/flyers they were carrying: “Suitcase, Train
station, Baku and Uzbekistan/Chemadan, Vokzal, Baku, Uzbekistan.” As
indicated from their slogans, these were the same groups who organized the
anti-Orange demonstrations in November 2005 in Simferopol’s Lenin square.

On July 10, 2006, Crimean Tatars brought up the issue yet one more time with
the Crimean authorities. At the end of the talks, when the relocation of the
Market issue remained unresolved and the attackers were not penalized
regardless of the photos and videos showing their faces clearly, Crimean
Tatars have decided to continue with their nonviolent sit-in starting on
July 11, 2006.

A month later, on August 12, 2006 Crimea witnessed one of the bloodiest
conflicts since the mass return of the Crimean Tatars in 1990s. On that day,
Rodivilov’s Russian Blok, the Russian Community (ROK) and the
Cossack/Skinhead connection had their general meeting that was organized at
the center square of Bahcesaray.

In this gathering, all the meeting-attending citizens were called for an
attack on protesting Crimean Tatars by Rodivilov himself (this was shown on
news footage on Channel 10). When the RB and ROK meeting ended, groups
came down from the city square to the Azizler (market) site and surrounded
the
Crimean Tatars from all sides and started to attack them with large rocks,
hand grenades, and Molotov cocktails.

This call for attack on that particular day was not a coincidence. First, it
was the day that Mejlis members from Simferopol decided to visit the Azizler
protestors to show their support for their efforts. Second it was the day
that 40 of the BERKUT military troops were called off the Azizler site and
were sent to Yalta for the Yalta City Day celebrations.

80 BERKUT troops were placed at the market by the Ministry of Internal
Affairs (MVD) after the first attack on the protestors on July 8, 2006. In
other words, on the morning of August 12, 2006, there were only 40
BERKUT members were present in the area.

Obviously, 40 members of BERKUT were not enough to stop the rock and
Molotov cocktail throwing 600 attackers that circled the Crimean Tatars. As
a
result, more than 50 Crimean Tatar men and women were gravely injured during
the attacks. Among the attacked were the two deputies from the Ukrainian
Upper Parliament Mustafa Cemilev and Refat Chubarov, Mr. Leonid Pilunsky,
the head of the Crimean branch of the National Rukh party.

Moreover, all the parked cars in the area were turned upside down and
damaged (including Mustafa Cemilev’s, National Rukh’s Leonid Pilunsky’s,
and the director of the Crimean Tatar television Seidislam Kishveyev’s).

According to the Ukraine’s Interfax agency’s August 17, 2006 report (ICTV),
Nikolai Fedoryan, the head of the MVD of Crimea stated that there were
approximately 600 attackers and after their the pro-Russian groups arrived
in the area and started to throw large rocks and explosives on Crimean
Tatars without any provocation.

These events that lasted for two days finally ended when the Crimean
Parliament officials and the Mejlis administrators co-signed an agreement
about the relocation of market from the Azizler area to Firunze Street in
Bahcesaray where market stalls were already existed for the new market.
After these bloody events, Gennadi Moskal’, the permanent representative
of Yushchenko in Crimea, condemned the attacks.

On the other hand, although Rodivilov was videotaped and photographed by
various news agencies and television stations while giving orders for the
attacks and cheering the attackers by yelling “Mejlis-tyurma
(Mejlis-prison),” no action was taken against him. Today he is still a major
political actor in Crimea and remains to be the deputy of the Crimean Upper
Parliament.

Presently, the artificially created ethnic cleavages between the Crimean
Tatars and the “Slavs” are still being fueled by these same groups in
Crimea. Since none of the guilty parties are penalized the returnees are
losing hope in the state structures.

The land issue remains unresolved as the Russian Community of Crimea (ROK)
and the Russian Blok claim that Crimean Tatars have all they need in Crimea,
including land and housing, and want to ban all activities of the de-facto
Crimean Tatar Assembly, Mejlis.[xvi] As time goes by, pockets of returnees
do not see any hope but continue with field protests (polyana protesta).

However, squatting on these fields is not danger-free. At the end of 2003,
the Militia troops were given permission to use dogs, chemical elements, and
special arms for the purpose of “preventing” or “liquidating” mass
squatting. Moreover, because of the new implementations of the Ukrainian
Criminal Code that now entails two years of forced work, imprisonment, and
fines for squatting on land.

The six Crimean Tatars that were put to jail for 3-8 years for their alleged
participation in Simeiz and Cotton Club events (2004) still remain in jail.
Since the original sentencing, this case went back and forth between the
Crimean court; the Ukrainian court; the Crimean appeal court with no change
regardless of the fact that the court had insufficient evidence to sentence
them to begin with.

In the mean time, the “Russian Block,” the “Russian Community,” and certain
“Cossack” organizations (pro-Russian paramilitary organization) that train
volunteer [paid] mercenaries in Crimea continue with their power showdown
against the Crimean Tatars and keep the “order and security” parallel to the
existing “legal” law-enforcement agencies although they have no judicial
right to do so.

As Crimean Tatars commemorate the 63rd anniversary of the deportation on
May 18, 2007, they remember the past. They pray for their dead and they
pray for their future in the Crimean peninsula. The future cannot be
isolated from the past. Meanwhile, the present shapes the future.

Accordingly, to prevent the future conflicts in Crimea, the Crimean crisis
at the periphery needs an immediate attention by the center. If Kiev views
the Crimean crisis objectively and deals with all the parties accordingly,
the future conflicts can be prevented.

To err is human. Hence if the state actors learn from the past mistakes and
regulate their present based on those lessons, the future can be brighter
for all parties not only in Crimea but in all Ukraine.           -30-
—————————————————————————————————
                                           FOOTNOTES
[i] Burke, Justin, et.al. (1996). Crimean Tatars: Repatriation and Conflict
Prevention, New York: The Open Society Institute, The Forced Migration
Projects, p 12.
[ii] Williams, Brian Glyn (2001). The Crimean Tatars-The Diaspora Experience
and the Forging of a Nation Leiden, Boston, Koln: Brill; p.376.
[iii] Noyan, Ismail (1967). Kirimli Filolog-Sair Bekir Cobanzade: Hayati ve
Eserleri/Crimean Philologist-Poet Bekir Cobanzade: His Life and His Work.
(Istanbul Universitesi Basilmamis Yuksek Lisans Tezi/University of Istanbul,
Unpublished Masters thesis), p.7
[iv] Pohl, Otto J. (2004). Timeline: deportation of Crimean Tatars and Their
national Struggle under Soviet Rule.
http://www.iccrimea.org/surgun/timeline.html
[v] Wilson Andrew (2002). Ukrainians: Unexpected Nation. Second Edition.
New Haven and London: Yale Nota Bene – Yale University Press, pp. 151
[vi] Fisher, Alan W. (1987). The Crimean Tatars. Stanford, CA: Hoover
Institution Press, p. 167
[vii] Iliasov, Remzi (1999). Krimskie Tatari: Kratkii Obzor Proshlogo i
Analiz Sotsialno-Ekonomicheskogo Polojenia Nastoiashego,  Simferopol, p. 7
[viii] Nikita Khrushchev transferred Crimea to the Ukrainian SSR on February
19, 1954.
[ix] It is also estimated that about 250,000 Crimean Tatars are still
residing in exile (mainly in Uzbekistan, but also in Kazakhstan, Tajikistan,
and throughout the different regions of the Russian Federation), not by
choice but by impossible socio-economic obstacles placed upon them by
multiple circumstances.
[x] Dialogue Newspaper (in Russian). No=22 (36), 9-16 June 2006, p.2.
[xi] The head of the local PoR Party Za Yanukovycha is the Vice-Speaker of
the Crimean Parliament Vasyliy Kiselyev. During the 2004 presidential
elections, he was the one who declared “if Yuschenko is elected a President
of Ukraine, the Crimea will become a Crimean Tatar autonomy.”
[xii] One thing needs to be emphasized at this juncture. These so-called
Cossacks that appear in every conflict in Crimea are not the ones that we
know from Russian and Ukrainian folk songs, i.e., Don or Zaporijniye
Cossacks. Most of them are former Soviet officers who have retired in
Crimea. Most of them have their blood types tattooed on their hearts and
have Afghanistan tattoos on their arms.
[xiii] Krimskaya Vremya No: 63 (2301) 10 June 2006, “About the Feodosian
Events, Flight, Arson and “Annushkii Syndrome,”p.3
[xiv] Ibid.
[xv] On July 12, 2006 in his interview with the journalists, the head of the
de-facto Crimean Tatar Mejlis Mustafa Cemilev stated that if Medvedev’s name
was Ametov (i.e. a Crimean Tatar name),  he would have been sentenced to
jail for 10 years.
[xvi] “The Russian Community of Crimea wants to ban the activities of
Mejlis/[—-] http://censor.net.ua/go/offer–ResourceID–44097 (February
12, 2007)
—————————————————————————————————–
NOTE: Idil P. Izmirli is a doctoral candidate at the Institute for Conflict
Analysis and Resolution (ICAR), George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia.
She has been conducting extended field research in Crimea Ukraine since
2000. In 2006 she spent six months in Crimea, Ukraine as an IREX Individual
Advanced Research Opportunities (IARO) scholar. She is the current president
of the International Committee for Crimea (ICC). In 2004, and 2006, she was
an invited participant of the “Ukraine’s Quest for Mature Nation Statehood”
Conference sponsored by the “Ukrainian Congress Committee of America –
 UCCA.” Contact: Misket@aol.com
———————————————————————————————–
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========================================================
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13.                      MARINA LEWYCKA’S FIRST BOOK,

                                 BETTER LATE THAN NEVER
         Lewycka’s first book was rejected 36 times before she finally found a
                publisher at age of 58. Now “A Short History of Tractors in
              Ukrainian” is a worldwide hit. She talks to Stephen Moss about
                   family ties, that tricky second novel – and never giving up.

INTERVIEW: With Author Marina Lewycka
BY: Stephen Moss, The Guardian
London, United Kingdom, Thursday, May 31, 2007

There’s a note for the postman pinned to the front door of Marina Lewycka’s
functional, foursquare house in the rowdy university quarter of Sheffield.
“If no answer,” it says, “please put packages behind the wheelie bin. Don’t
worry – they’re only foreign books.”

A blase attitude to the new foreign editions of her bestselling first novel,
“A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian,” that arrive with every post – it
had been translated into 29 languages at the last count – but she has a
simple explanation. “What thief would be interested in foreign books?”

The Latvian edition has just arrived, and looks suspiciously thin. “Are you
sure they haven’t left bits out?” I ask her. “They might have done,” she
says. “The Russian edition is very short as well. I can read Russian a bit,
and it struck me as a bit of a slapdash translation. If you read Tolstoy in
Russian, it’s three times as long.”

I start reading aloud the first paragraph of Tractors in Latvian. It is
strangely like Latin. At least it is the way I pronounce it. “Do you know
Latvian?” asks Lewycka, evidently impressed.

Lewycka, who was 58 when her life-transforming novel appeared two years
ago, used to teach journalism and PR at Sheffield Hallam University, to
which she is still attached in some vague, part-time, institution-boosting
capacity.

It quickly becomes apparent that she is a far better interviewer than I am,
and is soon asking me questions. She is the sort of person who, on first
meeting, you feel you have known all your life. Funny, open, energised; a
bit like her fiction.

Readers must feel it, too – hence the 800,000 sales of Tractors in the UK
and the remarkably ugly book awards (“What on earth can you do with a
Nibbie?”) that litter her resolutely unmodernised kitchen.

So has this vast success after almost 40 years in pursuit of publication
changed her life – if not her kitchen? She laughs. “It has in some ways. It
had always been my dream to be a writer, and obviously having your dream
come true is fantastic.

But there is something a bit terrible about it as well, because once your
dream has come true, what else is there? It was your dream and it becomes
your job, and then it’s not a dream any more.”
I WAS JUST ANOTHER MAD WOMAN GOING DOWN THE ROAD
She also has to negotiate people’s idea of what a writer should be. “If I go
out now wearing my old jogging trousers and trainers, with my hair looking
wild, people know me, whereas they didn’t before.

I was just another mad woman going down the road. They expect you to be
witty or clever or profound, and to have all sorts of opinions about things
you have no idea about.

It’s nice and very flattering, but a bit unreal. People have a perception of
you as an author so you think, ‘I’d better try really hard to be an author.’
But what is an author? You try to become the person that people want you to
be or expect you to be.

What I enjoy more than anything is being with friends who knew me before
all this happened, and I can relax and go back to being that person.”

Before Tractors, the only creative work she had had published was a poem in
an Arts Council magazine about 30 years ago. Had she ever doubted that her
dream would come true?

“I doubted it all the time,” she says, “but writing was a compulsion. Lots
of very good writers never get published, and that could easily have
happened to me.

People think that good writers will always come out in the end, but I don’t
believe that.” She says she had reached the point where she barely discussed
her writing with her husband, a mining consultant, or grown-up daughter.
“When you’ve been doing it for as long as that, it gets a bit embarrassing,
so you don’t talk about it very much.”
 DAUGHTER OF TWO UKRAINIANS TAKEN TO GERMANY
Lewycka, the daughter of two Ukrainians who had been taken to Germany as
forced labourers by the Nazis, was born in a British-run refugee camp in
Germany in 1946.

Her family settled in the UK soon afterwards, and Tractors draws heavily on
her life – conflicts with her sister, the loss of her beloved mother, an
eccentric engineer father who married again to a much younger woman, and
his daughters’ schemes to oust the interloper.

How did her family feel about becoming material for a novel? “They have
been very generous about it, really,” she says. “I feel bad about my sister.
It must be awful for her, and I’d hate it if it happened to me. But you write
about what you know.

At least you start off by writing about what you know, and then the worst
thing is that you invent stuff, and no one really knows what’s real and
what’s invented, and in the end you don’t even know yourself.”

Her original plan for Tractors was to write a memoir of her mother’s life,
and before she died she had made a tape of her recollections. “I started
writing it,” she says, “but then I realised that there wasn’t enough on the
tape.

I just didn’t know enough, so I was going to have to make stuff up, and in a
way it was very liberating. If it had been my mother’s book it would have
been pretty heavy and gloomy and sad, and not having to do that was very
liberating.”
         TO TREAT SERIOUS THEMES IN A COMIC WAY
The defining feature of Lewycka’s writing is to treat serious themes – age,
family conflict, the back story of war and grief and separation – in a comic
way. Life’s a nightmare, but a hellishly funny one. She says it was the
realisation that she could use humour in her books that was the key to
unlocking what she had to say.

“You get funnier as you get older, but I hadn’t connected with my sense of
humour. I did for everyday purposes, but [before Tractors] I didn’t have the
confidence to do it with what I wrote. Tractors felt like a last fling
really. I thought, ‘What the hell? It doesn’t matter what I write. I’ll have
a laugh and stick it on the internet.'”

She embarked on a creative writing course at Sheffield Hallam, polished what
she had spent the best part of a decade writing, and at the end of the
course was approached by the external examiner, who also happened to be
an agent, to see whether she wanted him to represent her.

After 36 rejections (she has kept all the letters) for her previous work –
two completed novels, poetry, short stories, romantic fiction – she bit his
hand off.
                        SECOND NOVEL “TWO CARAVANS”
She published her second novel, “Two Caravans,” this spring, and says she
was keen to get the always tricky follow-up to a smash out of the way. “I
just wanted to do it to prove to myself that I could. Number one was so
overwhelming, and I thought, ‘Gosh, I might never write anything ever
again.’ I knew the second novel was traditionally the hardest one, and that
I’d probably get a lot of stick for it.”

In fact, apart from a general dislike of the sections that are narrated by a
dog – the book is ambitiously multi-layered – it was well received, and now
she can relax.

The third book is well under way, a fourth is germinating, and she gives the
impression that she has plenty of time to fashion an oeuvre. When your
father is still alive at 94, being 60 can still seem like a good time to
begin.

“Two Caravans” has the same characteristic blend of comedy and desperation
as her first book. It concerns a group of strawberry pickers drawn from
several countries who fetch up in Kent, and traces their lives, loves and
battle to survive.

It is far less closely aligned to her own life than Tractors, but its
starting point draws on an episode from her childhood, when she and her
mother worked as pea-pickers in Lincolnshire. “It was blissful,” she
recalls.

“You were out in the fields in the fresh air and I was with my mum, and
there was banter and camaraderie among the other pea-pickers. If someone

had been looking in from the outside, they’d have said it was grossly
exploitative, and no doubt it was, but it was still lovely, and I tried to
get that across in Caravans.”

For her third book, she promises that there will be “no Ukrainians and no
vehicles”. She is coy about what will be in it. “It’s about anger and hate,
and I’m looking at Israel and Palestine quite a lot. But I don’t want to say
too much.”
               REDISCOVERED HER FAMILY IN UKRAINE
One by-product of Tractors is that she rediscovered her family in Ukraine.
She travelled to the country for the first time in 2005, met her mother’s
sister and played her the tape she had made with her mother before her
death.

“Her sister was quite a bit younger than my mother and they had lost
contact,” she says. “She hadn’t heard anything of her or from her for 62
years, and then, suddenly, there was this tape of my mother speaking
Ukrainian and telling her everything that had happened.”

It is a pleasing irony that one language in which “A Short History of
Tractors in Ukrainian” has yet to appear is Ukrainian, though this is about
to be rectified and a visit from the Ukrainian translator is imminent.

Some Ukrainians were sniffy about the book, including the one who reviewed
it in the Guardian back in March 2005 and found it a “banal tale” that
crossed a “school textbook on Ukrainian history with . . . an episode of
Coronation Street.”

“It has taken me a while to understand why he hated it so much,” says
Lewycka, “but I think I do understand now. I’ve met a lot of Ukrainians
since then. Before I wrote it, I didn’t know many Ukrainian Ukrainians. I
knew a lot of Ukrainians who lived over here, and they all thought it was a
hoot.

The Ukrainian Ukrainians are quite self-conscious about Ukraine as a country
because it’s newly emerged on to the world stage. They always ask you what
people in the west think about Ukraine, and I think, ‘Gosh, what can I say?’
I can’t tell them that actually people in the west don’t think about Ukraine
at all.

So I make something up, and then, when Ukraine gets to be in the news, it’s
about an incontinent old man and a woman with enormous breasts, and
though they like the fact there’s a famous Ukrainian, they hate the fact
it’s for something like that”                             -30-
————————————————————————————————-
LINK: http://books.guardian.co.uk/hay2007/story/0,,2091741,00.html
————————————————————————————————-

NOTE: Subheadings inserted editorially by the AUR.
————————————————————————————————-
[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
========================================================
14. AN APPEAL TO THE LEADERS OF THE G7

 
STATEMENT BY HUMAN RIGHTS LEADERS: Moscow, Russia
Andrew Grigorenko, General Petro Grigorenko Foundation
New York, New York, Friday, June 1, 2007
TO: Distinguished heads of states and governments of
the Italian Republic,
Canada,
the United Kingdom of Great Britain,
the Federal Republic of Germany,
the French Republic,
the United States of America,
and Japan!

On 6-8 June, within the framework of the annual Summit of the 8
largest industrially developed democracies of the world, you will be
meeting with Vladimir Putin, the President of the Russian Federation,
and – in accordance with the current Constitution of our country – the
guarantor of human and civil rights and liberties.

We call upon you to explicitly and unambiguously bring to the
attention of Mr Putin – your partner in diplomatic negotiations – your
concern about the gross, mass, and defiant violations of the most
fundamental human rights and democratic freedoms by the authorities
of the country they govern.

We call upon you to renounce the practice of “Realpolitik”, turning a
blind eye to an anti-democratic course in exchange for shifts of
position with respect to political and economic issues.

The experience of the Second World War and the confrontation with
totalitarianism has shown the vital importance of observing
fundamental human rights in order to ensure international security.
It is for this reason that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights
was adopted in December of 1948.  The Helsinki Act, signed in August
of 1976, enshrined a most important principle – that governments do
not have the right to violate rights and liberties by pleading state
sovereignty.

It is precisely for this reason that we insist that the leaders of the
world’s largest democracies stress that the suppressions of democracy
and the repressions taking place in the Russian Federation today are
unacceptable to them.

The general directionality of the political evolution of the system of
power in Russia is ever more irreversibly approaching a point beyond
which is found an already openly authoritarian regime, run by persons
who have come from the special services and security structures.

We regard as critically dangerous for democracy in the whole world the
de facto liquidation of democracy in Russia, and specifically:

–  the creation of a managed court and law-enforcement system, which
creates unlimited opportunities for persecuting political and civic
activists, human rights advocates and their relatives (who in such a
manner are transformed into true hostages), for broad-scale
persecutions on political, ideological and ethnic grounds.  There
already exist dozens of persons in Russia who have been recognized as
victims of political repressions by human rights advocates;

 – the suppression of freedom of the press, and of the freedom of self-
expression more generally, the transformation of the principal mass
information media – first and foremost the nationwide television
channels – into an instrument of state propaganda, based on a cult of
the head of state and of military power;

 – torture, and inhuman and degrading treatment, are widely practiced
within the Russian penitentiary agency, and there exist special places
of confinement for torture – a “new GULAG Archipelago”.

We bring attention to the scandalous situation in connection with the
violation of the right of citizens of Russia to the freedom to conduct
rallies and meetings and to form associations.

This is:
 –  the unlawful prohibitions and barbarous dispersals of peaceful
demonstrations in Moscow (16 December 2006, 31 March, 14 April, 5
and 27 May 2007), in St. Petersburg (3 March and 15 April 2007) and in
Nizhny Novgorod (24 March and 27 April 2007), the persecutions of
participants in a rally in Samara on 18 May – that had been permitted
by the authorities – and the demonstratively mocking detainings of
those who were preparing to fly out to Samara;

 –  the mass persecution of hundreds of civic and political activists,
who were suspected of a desire to participate in “Marches of the
Discontented” and Social Forums.

We call upon you to:
–  seek the release of Russian prisoners persecuted on political
grounds – those convicted in the YUKOS case, the Chechen woman
Zara Murtazaliyeva, the political essayist Boris Stomakhin and – as
indicated in a PACE resolution of 19 April – the scientists Igor
Sutyagin and Valentin Danilov and the lawyer Mikhail Trepashkin.

 – pay the most diligent attention to the use of charges of extremism
for the persecution of human rights advocates and opponents of the
regime;

 –  call upon the President of Russia not to violate the rights –
guaranteed by Russian legislation – of the participants in the
peaceful Marches of the Discontented planned for 9 (St. Petersburg)
and 11 June (Moscow), and to prevent new beatings and cruel
detainings of the demonstrators.
                                              
[1] Lyudmila Alekseyeva, Chair of the Moscow Helsinki Group,
Foundation In Defence of Rights of Inmates
[2] Elena Bonner, human rights advocate
[3] Sergei Kovalev, President, Human Rights Institute
[4] Lev Ponomarev, All-Russia Public Movement “For Human Rights”
[5] Yuli Rybakov, human rights advocate,

member of the Bureau of Yabloko party
[6] Yuri Samodurov, Director of the Andrey Sakharov Museum
and Public Centre
[7] Clergyman Gleb Yakunin, Public Committee In Defence of
Freedom of Conscience
[8] Alla Gerber, Holocaust Foundation
[9] Ernst Cherny, Coalition “Environmental Biology and Human Rights”
[10] Yelena Grishina, Director of Public Information Centre
[11] Boris Vishnevsky, Novaya Gazeta columnist,
member of the Bureau of Yabloko party
[12] Mikhail Gorny, The St. Petersburg Strategy Centre
[13] Andrei Buzin, Chair of Inter-Regional Association of Voters
[14] Vladimir Oyvin, “Glasnost” Foundation
[15] Antuan Arakelyan, Chair of the Saint-Petersburg Intersectoral
Coalition “Dialogue and Cause”
[16] Alexander Vinnikov, Movement “For Russia without Racism”
[17] Sergey Sorokin, Movement against Violence
[18] Eduard Murzin, member of the State Assembly of Bashkiria
[19] Vadim Belotserkovsky, author, human rights advocate
———————————————————————————————–
[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
========================================================
15.  RIVNE REGIONAL COUNCIL ASKS YUSHCHENKO TO ASSIGN
 POSTHUMOUSLY HERO OF UKRAINE TITLE TO UPA COMMANDER
            SHUKHEVYCH AND UNR DIRECTORY HEAD PETLIURA 

Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Thu, May 31, 2007

KYIV- The May 25 meeting of the Rivne region council session has asked
President Viktor Yuschenko to assign posthumously the Hero of Ukraine
title to commander in chief of the Ukrainian Rebel Army (UPA) Roman
Shukhevych and head of the directory of Ukrainian People’s Republic
(UNR) Symon Petliura.

This follows from the resolution of the session, the text of which Ukrainian
News obtained.

‘… assigning of the Hero of Ukraine title commemorates the heroic deed in
fight for freedom of Ukrainian nation on the occasion of the 65th
anniversary of UPA foundation…,’ reads the address.

Deputies also ask the President to assign the Hero of Ukraine title to
commander of UPA Poliska Sich Taras Borovets (Bulba) and commander
in chief of UPA Sever Dmytro Kliachkovskyi (known as Klym Savura).
As Ukrainian News reported, in May Lviv regional council initiated assigning
posthumously of the Hero of Ukraine title to Roman Shukhevych. In March
the Volyn regional council addressed the President with the similar request.
———————————————————————————————–
[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
========================================================
16. RUSSIA: GAZPROM HONES ITS STRATEGY ON UKRAINE

By Roman Kupchinsky, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL)
Prague, Czech Republic, Wednesday, May 30, 2007

PRAGUE – Valery Golubev, the deputy chairman of Russia’s state-controlled
gas monopoly Gazprom’s Management Committee, said in April that the price of
gas charged by Gazprom to Ukraine will depend on how closely the economies
of both countries are prepared to cooperate, the Ukrainian website proUA.com
reported.

“If politicians make a decision to establish closer economic ties between
our countries, this will guarantee lower gas prices.

However, if the politicians decide to separate these ties, then the price of
gas for Ukraine will be same as for Germany. Does Ukraine really want this?
I want to stress that Russia does not need this,” Golubev said.

This explanation of pricing for gas sold to Ukraine is different from
previous explanations provided by Gazprom managers and by Russian President
Vladimir Putin. Such explanations have emphasized that Russia is striving to
stop subsidizing gas sales to Ukraine.

“We have subsidized the Ukrainian economy with low gas prices for a decade
and we intend to end this practice,” Putin said in January 2007. Putin
didn’t mention, however, that Ukraine buys mostly Turkmen, rather than
Russian gas.
                                             GAS BASKET
The present price Ukraine pays for gas was negotiated in early 2007 and was
based upon the January 2006 agreement whereby Gazprom agreed to a price

for a “basket” of Turkmen, Kazakh, and Russian gas.

Ukraine wound up paying $95 per 1,000 cubic meters of gas in 2006 and $130
in 2007, when Turkmenistan raised the gas price for Gazprom to $100 per
1,000 cubic meters.

Does Golubev’s statement reflect the future of energy relations between
Ukraine and Russia?

As of 2007, Ukraine does not buy any Russian gas — it only imports 50
billion cubic meters of Turkmen gas.

Turkmenistan sells this gas to a Gazprom subsidiary company Gazexport for
$100 per 1,000 cubic meters. Gazexport then resells it to RosUkrEnergo, a
middleman with headquarters in Switzerland, which resells it to a joint
venture company, UkrGazEnergo, at the Russian-Ukrainian border. It is then
sold on to Ukrainian domestic and industrial consumers.

If Gazprom should suddenly determine that the economies of the two countries
are not “close enough,” it could raise prices. But buying Turkmen gas for
$100 and reselling it to Ukraine at the market price of $250-270 could be
risky.

Such price speculation could upset the Turkmen leadership, which
traditionally has insisted that Gazprom not engage in such deals.
Turkmenistan would then most likely be forced to raise the price it charges
Gazprom to world market levels.
                                      TRUNK PIPELINES
Golubev’s comments raise another question: who is empowered to decide

when “closer economic ties” between Ukraine and Russia reach the point of
closeness that qualifies Ukraine for a substantial gas-price reduction?

Any price reduction that Russia might give to Ukraine would be, in effect, a
very expensive subsidy. Russian politicians and the Finance Ministry might
be hard-pressed to accept such an arrangement.

Golubev could well be disguising Gazprom’s long-standing efforts to obtain a
controlling share in the Ukrainian trunk gas pipeline by talking about
“economic closeness” in return for cheap gas.

This was the tactic used in Belarus and in Armenia where Moscow was intent
on initially gaining part and ultimately, a controlling stake in the
pipelines.

The question remains: is Gazprom willing to sacrifice billions of dollars in
subsidies in return for control over the pipeline?

During his visit to Moscow in April, according to the RIA Novosti news
agency, the newly elected Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedov’s
said he would honor the 25-year contract signed with Gazprom in 2003 to
supply Russia with the lion’s share of Turkmen gas — at the same time,
however, Berdymukhammedov was very vague about the price he would charge
Gazprom for this gas.

Why, many ask, should Turkmenistan sell its gas to Gazprom at prices far
below world prices?

At this time Kazakhstan, according to RIA Novosti, began threatening to
raise its price for gas from $100 to $160 per 1,000 cubic meters and the
Turkmen leadership was reportedly contemplating a similar price increase.
Central Asian gas producers have said that in two years they plan to charge
world prices for their gas.

If this were to take place, it would definitely increase the price Ukraine
pays for gas — unless Golubev’s formula for cheap gas is implemented.

In mid-May when Putin signed the agreement with Central Asian leaders to
build a new Caspian gas pipeline to export Central Asian gas to the West,
the price Turkmenistan would charge for its gas was not mentioned.

Interfax reported on May 14 that: “The price [for Turkmen gas] is to remain
unchanged until the end of 2009, but talks are to be carried through before
July 1, 2009, on changing it under long-term deals by bringing it into line
with European prices.”
                                         UKRAINE CRISIS
Golubev’s remarks were by and large ignored by the Ukrainian media, which
was consumed with the current confrontation between President Viktor
Yushchenko and Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych.

Yanukovych, who favors close political and economic ties with Russia, is
seen as the beneficiary of Golubev’s remarks. But does his business
constituency agree with this?

The Industrial Union of Donbas, one of the most powerful business groupings
in Ukraine, has had a separate gas-purchasing agreement with Kazakhstan for
many years.

Golubev has not been a visible participant in the Ukrainian-Russian gas
discussions till now, but given his background he seems to enjoy powerful
support from the Kremlin.

A former KGB officer, Golubev worked in the St. Petersburg mayor’s office
when Vladimir Putin and Aleksei Miller, the present head of Gazprom, worked
there.

In February 2003, he became a member of Gazprom’s management committee

and in November 2006 became its deputy chairman replacing Aleksandr
Riazanov who had been fired.

Golubev’s responsibility at Gazprom is the CIS market for Russian gas sales,
one of the most sensitive jobs in Gazprom.

His pronouncements about a vague gas-pricing scheme for Ukraine could be

an indication that the Kremlin is intent on trying to use a scare tactic in
order to bring Ukraine closer into the Russian fold at the same time helping
to further Putin’s long-standing support for Yanukovych.

Golubev’s attempt to promote this new “carrot-stick” scheme, despite his
unrealistic arguments, could mean that Gazprom is trying to both influence
Ukrainians to support Yanukovych in return for cheap gas and maneuver
Ukraine into abandoning or sharing its control over the largest single gas
pipeline for Russian gas to the EU.                          -30-
—————————————————————————————————–
http://www.rferl.org/featuresarticle/2007/05/a6452202-a170-421b-8c96-ee204475810b.html

—————————————————————————————————————-
[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
========================================================
17. RUSSIAN LANGUAGE IMPORTANT FOR ENRICHMENT OF
             PEOPLE WORLD OVER SAYS FOREIGN MINISTRY

ITAR-TASS, Moscow, Russia, Monday, May 28, 2007

MOSCOW – Russia that defends the position of the Russian language is

looking upon it as a factor of unification and enrichment of people and
cultures of different countries, spokesman for the Foreign Ministry Mikhail
Kamynin declared on the eve of a conference on the status of the Russian
language abroad.

Intellectual losses caused by cutting off foreign countries from one of the
universal languages and such a world center as Russia seem unnecessary, the
diplomat said.

The Moscow conference occupies a special place in a series of events
organized in connection with the Year of the Russian language, Kamynin said.
It will be the biggest and most representative in a series of similar
conferences organized in the CIS and the Baltic states.

The conference will offer an opportunity to compatriots to exchange opinions
on the status of the Russian language in countries where they live and
formulate recommendations to Russian state structures, the diplomat said.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, who chairs the governmental
commission for the affairs of compatriots abroad will open the forum and
First Vice-Premier Dmitry Medvedev, Chairman of the organizing committee

of the Year of the Russian language festival, will deliver the main report at
the conference. A total of 53 delegates will arrive from all former Soviet
republics to attend the forum, Kamynin said.

In recent years, the number of the Russian-speaking population has slowly
declined in a number of “near aboard” countries, but at the same time it
went up in certain foreign countries.

The number of the Russian-speaking population in Kazakhstan and Ukraine

is more than 30 percent. In Latvia and Estonia – around 30 percent.

Ethnic Russians account for more than ten percent of the population in
Belarus, Kyrgyzstan and Moldova, and the Russian-speaking population
makes up 5-10 percent in Uzbekistan and Lithuania, Kamynin said.

There are 1.5 million Russian-speaking people living in Israel, around 3.5
million – in Germany and around three million in the United States. Most of
the Russian-speaking population of these countries are people who emigrated
from Russia on the wave of the 1990s, Kamynin said.            -30-

———————————————————————————————–
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AUR#851 Jun 1 Ukraine’s Democracy Gasps For Air; Lawmakers Miss Deadline; Ukraine On The Edge; WTO Legislation Passes; Tatar Deportation; Gazprom

=========================================================
ACTION UKRAINE REPORT – AUR           
                 An International Newsletter, The Latest, Up-To-Date
                     In-Depth Ukrainian News, Analysis and Commentary

                      Ukrainian History, Culture, Arts, Business, Religion,
         Sports, Government, and Politics, in Ukraine and Around the World       

                        
ACTION UKRAINE REPORT – AUR – Number 851
Mr. E. Morgan Williams, Publisher and Editor, SigmaBleyzer
WASHINGTON, D.C., FRIDAY, JUNE 1, 2007 

               –——-  INDEX OF ARTICLES  ——–
            Clicking on the title of any article takes you directly to the article.               
   Return to the Index by clicking on Return to Index at the end of each article
1.                  UKRAINE LAWMAKERS MISS CRISIS DEADLINE                    
By Dario Thuburn, Agence France Presse, (AFP), Thu, May 31, 2007
 
Memo from Kiev: By Steven Lee Myers, The New York Times

New York, New York, Friday, June 1, 2007
International Herald Tribune, Paris, France, Thu, May 31, 2007

4.                                 UKRAINE: ON THE EDGE
LEAD EDITORIAL: Financial Times
London, United Kingdom, Wed, May 30 2007

5.         UKRAINE’S PARLIAMENT PASSES ALL LAWS NEEDED
                             TO MEET WTO REQUIREMENTS 

AP Worldstream, Kiev, Ukraine, Thursday, May 31, 2007

6.        UKRAINIAN MPs GIVE PRELIMINARY APPROVAL FOR
                      PARLIAMENTARY ELECTION FINANCING

ICTV television, Kiev, in Ukrainian 0945 gmt 31 May 07
BBC Monitoring Service, United Kingdom, Thursday, May 31, 2007

7.                       UKRAINE: NOTHING IRREVOCABLE
COMMENTARY: By Dmitry Shusharin
RIA Novosti political commentator, RIA Novisti
Moscow, Russia, Thursday, May 31, 2007

8.   UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT ADDRESSES CROATIAN PARLIAMENT
HINA news agency, Zagreb, Croatia, in English 1529 gmt 31 May 07
BBC Monitoring Service, United Kingdom, Thursday, May 31, 2007

9.                          THREE UKRAINIANS = FIVE DRIVERS

UkrAgro Outlooks and Comments, Kyiv, Ukraine, Thu, May 31, 2007

10.                        REGIME RESTORATION AND UKRAINE
LETTER-TO-THE-EDITOR: By Dan Fenech
Kyiv, Ukraine, Thursday, May 31, 2007
Action Ukraine Report (AUR) #851, Article 10
Washington, D.C., Friday, June 1, 2007

11.     WHY PEOPLE CHOOSE TO WRITE ABOUT BAD MEMORIES?
                    Or thoughts after reading Vladimir Matveyevs article
                  “WWII Anniversary Conjures Up Some Bad Memories”
COMMENTARY: By Olha Onyshko, Co-producer
Documentary: “Galicia: Land of Dilemmas,” American University
Published by the Action Ukraine Report (AUR) #851, Article 11
Washington, D.C., Friday, June 1, 2007

12UKRAINE: AN OVERVIEW OF THE CRIMEAN QUESTION AT THE
       63RD ANNIVERSARY OF THE CRIMEAN TATAR DEPORTATION
ANALYSIS & COMMENTARY: By Idil P. Izmirli
Adjunct Faculty/Ph.D. Candidate, George Mason University
The Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution
Published by the Action Ukraine Report (AUR) #851, Article 12
Washington, D.C., June 1, 2007

13. MARINA LEWYCKA’S FIRST BOOK, BETTER LATE THAN NEVER
        
Lewycka’s first book was rejected 36 times before she finally found a
                publisher at age of 58. Now “A Short History of Tractors in
              Ukrainian” is a worldwide hit. She talks to Stephen Moss about
                   family ties, that tricky second novel – and never giving up.
INTERVIEW: With Author Marina Lewycka
BY: Stephen Moss, The Guardian
London, United Kingdom, Thursday, May 31, 2007

14.                     AN APPEAL TO THE LEADERS OF THE G7

STATEMENT BY HUMAN RIGHTS LEADERS: Moscow, Russia
Andrew Grigorenko, General Petro Grigorenko Foundation
New York, New York, Friday, June 1, 2007
15RIVNE REGIONAL COUNCIL ASKS YUSHCHENKO TO ASSIGN
  POSTHUMOUSLY HERO OF UKRAINE TITLE TO UPA COMMANDER
            SHUKHEVYCH AND UNR DIRECTORY HEAD PETLIURA 
Ukrainian News Agency, Kyiv, Ukraine, Thu, May 31, 2007

16.        RUSSIA: GAZPROM HONES ITS STRATEGY ON UKRAINE
By Roman Kupchinsky, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL)
Prague, Czech Republic, Wednesday, May 30, 2007

17.       RUSSIAN LANGUAGE IMPORTANT FOR ENRICHMENT OF
                   PEOPLE WORLD OVER SAYS FOREIGN MINISTRY
ITAR-TASS, Moscow, Russia, Monday, May 28, 2007
========================================================
1
       UKRAINE LAWMAKERS MISS CRISIS DEADLINE
                    
By Dario Thuburn, Agence France Presse, (AFP), Thu, May 31, 2007

KIEV – Ukrainian lawmakers failed to pass a series of laws in time for a
deadline set by President Viktor Yushchenko on Thursday, prolonging a
political crisis in the ex-Soviet republic.

The votes were a precondition for Yushchenko to set early elections expected
on September 30 after a deal struck with his rival, Prime Minister Viktor
Yanukovych. Yushchenko had given lawmakers until midnight on Thursday to
vote.

But the deputy speaker of parliament, Adam Martynyuk, declared the session
over and said the legislature would meet again on Friday in defiance of the
president’s orders.

Observers have warned that failure to pass the legislation on time could
plunge Ukraine into turmoil again by scuppering the deal between the feuding
leaders.

The crisis in Ukraine began on April 2, when Yanukovych defied orders from
Yushchenko to dissolve parliament and hold early elections. The president
meant to stop what he called a power grab by the prime minister’s allies.

Yushchenko earlier expressed confidence that lawmakers would meet the
deadline on Thursday but also said that elections could still be held even
if they failed to do so.

He said opposition deputies in parliament from his Our Ukraine party and the
Yulia Tymoshenko Bloc could simply resign their posts, triggering polls
within 60 days.
               SERIES OF WTO AMENDMENTS APPROVED
Lawmakers on Thursday did approve a series of amendments liberalising trade
rules to smooth Ukraine’s entry into the World Trade Organisation (WTO) that
were also part of the crisis deal. But they failed to agree on other
legislation governing the elections.

Yanukovych’s Regions Party holds a majority in parliament in a coalition
with the Socialist and Communist parties, while Yushchenko’s allies are in
opposition.

Ukrainian newspapers on Thursday warned of a return to political chaos.
“Parliament fell apart in full session,” ran a headline in the Kommersant
daily, referring to the heated disputes between Yushchenko and Yanukovych
allies in parliament the evening before.

“The political deal has fallen through,” daily Izvestia said.

Tensions escalated sharply last week, when the president and prime minister
sparred for control over security forces and scuffles broke out at the
prosecutor general’s office.

The two sides put on a show of unity after the political deal on Sunday to
hold early elections. But tensions still simmered this week and numerous
disagreements remain.

The rivalry between Ukraine’s leaders dates back to the Orange Revolution of
2004, when mass protests helped bring pro-Western Yushchenko to the
presidency, overturning a flawed vote initially granted to Moscow-backed
Yanukovych.                                            -30-
————————————————————————————————-

[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
========================================================
2.     DEAL ON NEW VOTE IN UKRAINE NOW IN DOUBT

By Natasha Lisova, Associated Press Writer
Kiev, Ukraine, Thursday, May 31, 2007

KIEV, Ukraine – A hard-won agreement between Ukraine’s rival leaders to hold
new elections this fall was cast into doubt Thursday as parliament ended its
session hours ahead of a presidential deadline to pass legislation
supporting the deal.

Meanwhile, Interior Minister Vasyl Tsushko, a central figure in the
political standoff between the president and prime minister, was flown to
Germany for treatment after his condition worsened following a heart attack,
the ministry said.

President Viktor Yushchenko and Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych agreed
Sunday to elect a new parliament Sept. 30, easing tension amid a persistent
power struggle in the ex-Soviet republic, but efforts to pass laws governing
the vote have foundered this week amid mutual recriminations.

Yushchenko, who had been calling for a much earlier vote before the
compromise deal, said Thursday his allies would withdraw from parliament if
the laws were not approved by midnight – a move he said would trigger a new
election in two months.

“If a solution is not reached, my party and (Yulia) Tymoshenko’s party will
meet and formalize our withdrawal from parliament,” Yushchenko said during a
visit to Croatia. “Then elections will take place automatically in 60 days,”
he added.

But parliament, dominated by Yanukovych’s majority coalition, ended its
session without approving the legislation. Coalition members vowed to return
Friday.

The head of Yushchenko’s faction in parliament, Vyacheslav Kyrylenko,
accused the coalition of violating the agreement and said it “must take all
responsibility for future development of events on itself”.

He also said that 172 opposition lawmakers had registered their resignations
at the parliamentary secretariat, an initial step toward quitting
parliament.

The resignation of 151 lawmakers is required to dissolve parliament and
force elections in 60 days, but a leading Yanukovych ally suggested his camp
would resist any attempts to hold a vote in that time frame.

“It is impossible to hold any early elections if the package of bills is not
adopted by parliament,” said lawmaker Taras Chornovil.

Ukraine has been embroiled in a political crisis since Yushchenko issued on
April 2 a decree to dissolve the parliament and to call early elections.
Yanukovych and his governing coalition called the order illegal and appealed
against it to the Constitutional Court.

Sunday’s pre-dawn agreement eased concerns the standoff could escalate into
violence after Yushchenko fired the prosecutor-general and the Interior
Ministry – headed by Tsushko – sent police to prevent him from being evicted
from his office.

Yushchenko then claimed control of ministry’s forces and sent some to the
capital, although Tsushko refused to recognize the order.

The Interior Ministry said Wednesday that Tsushko had suffered a heart
attack, and ministry spokesman Kostyantyn Stogniy said late Thursday that he
had been transported to Germany because his condition had worsened.

Stogniy gave no further details.

Yushchenko on Wednesday called the move to send police forces to the
prosecutor’s office a “serious crime” and said Tsushko was responsible.

Yushchenko and Yanukovych were bitter rivals in Ukraine’s 2004 presidential
election. Yanukovych was declared the winner of a fraud-riddled vote that
sparked mass protests known as the Orange Revolution.

Yushchenko won a court-ordered rerun of the balloting, but Yanukovych
returned to prominence last year when his party won the largest share of
seats in parliament.                                  -30-
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[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
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3.                              STALLED BY CONFLICT,
                UKRAINE’S DEMOCRACY GASPS FOR AIR

Memo from Kiev: By Steven Lee Myers, The New York Times
New York, New York, Friday, June 1, 2007
International Herald Tribune, Paris, France, Thu, May 31, 2007

KIEV, Ukraine, May 31 – Two and a half years ago, the “Orange Revolution”
promised Ukrainians a freer, more democratic system of government. Instead,
the country now finds itself mired in perpetual political crisis, punctuated
by confusion, chaos and, at times, comedy.

In April, President Viktor A. Yushchenko issued a disputed decree dissolving
Parliament. That led to charges, countercharges and dueling protests between
the country’s warring camps, led by Mr. Yushchenko on one side and the prime
minister, Viktor F. Yanukovich, on the other.

On Wednesday, for example, protesters gathered outside the headquarters of
the prosecutor general, a member of Mr. Yanukovich’s party whom the
president had already fired two times.

Drawn by rumors of an imminent assault by government commandos, they
blockaded the leafy streets while their leaders issued instructions on how
to resist and warned of nefarious NATO plans to subjugate the nation. “We
don’t want to be imprisoned by America, like Yugoslavia was,” one protester
said.

Inside, a dozen members of Parliament occupied a landing by the elevator,
vowing to protect the prosecutor general, Svyatoslav M. Piskun. “Give me the
Constitution,” one deputy demanded, and then thumbed through the one
produced in search of some legal justification for all of this.

Mr. Piskun, who has accused Mr. Yushchenko of criminal conduct for
exceeding his constitutional powers, has refused to step down.

The president, in an interview, accused him in turn of politicizing the
justice system. He had already appointed somebody else to the post, only to
have his decree, like most of late, ignored.

The country’s leaders agreed early last Sunday morning to end a prolonged
political impasse by holding new parliamentary elections, the second in less
than two years. But that agreement, which appeared to be unraveling on
Thursday, has done little to resolve the underlying disputes.

They include an unclear division of power between a weakened presidency and
an empowered Parliament; allegations of corruption in Parliament and the
courts; and a lack of mature democratic institutions able to emerge from the
shadows of the oversize political personalities who dominate Ukrainian
politics.

The result has been not only endless conflict, but also public apathy,
tinged with disappointment, which even the country’s leaders acknowledge
having caused.

“We started a kind of judicial game, using the flaws of our laws,” Mr.
Piskun said in his barricaded building, referring to legal challenges that
have been swirling around him. “We make people lose trust in the judicial
system.”

Ukraine is immeasurably freer than it was in 2004, when President Leonid D.
Kuchma tried to orchestrate the fraudulent election of a successor, Mr.
Yanukovich, setting off protests that led to a new election, won by Mr.
Yushchenko.

One measure of that is that Mr. Yanukovich’s Party of Regions won enough
seats last year in parliamentary elections to make him prime minister.
Ukraine, though, has failed to consolidate its democracy, even as it has
embraced the theatrics of democratic politics.

Protests abound, though often with paid protesters, as do the tents that in
2004 filled Independence Square, known as the Maidan. So, ominously, do
political threats and brinkmanship.

Those activities nearly resulted in violence when Interior Ministry troops,
following orders from the interior minister, a Yanukovich loyalist, occupied
Mr. Piskun’s office after the president tried to dismiss him. Mr. Yushchenko
then declared the ministry’s military forces under his command, and the top
uniformed commander declared his loyalty to the president.

The interior minister, Vasyl P. Tsushko, was hospitalized Wednesday,
reportedly with a heart ailment. On Thursday, a member of his Socialist
Party declared that the minister had been poisoned by his opponents,
implicitly Mr. Yushchenko’s supporters.

Poison is a motif of Ukrainian politics, the most notable case being Mr.
Yushchenko’s poisoning before the 2004 vote. That crime remains unsolved,
an emblem of Ukraine’s uncertain embrace of the rule of law. The twist is
that Mr. Yushchenko is now accused of abusing the law.

That stems from his decision – with the parliamentary majority led by Mr.
Yanukovich growing and members of his own party defecting – to issue a
decree dissolving Parliament in April on narrow grounds that members were
switching parties, which he called “an issue of political corruption.”

His opponents assailed the move as unconstitutional, but when they took the
matter to the Constitutional Court, Mr. Yushchenko dismissed 3 of the
court’s 18 judges, accusing them of corruption.

The Constitutional Court, Mr. Piskun retorted indignantly, is “the backbone
of democracy.” He acknowledged that there might have been justification for
Mr. Yushchenko’s charges, but he said there was a judicial and parliamentary
process for resolving them.

Mr. Yushchenko defended his actions, though he appeared subdued, even
resigned. “I would like to emphasize this is not a political crisis,” he
said of the turmoil surrounding the prosecutor’s office. “It is just a
reality of political life in Ukraine.”

Ukraine remains a deeply divided country, with a large Russian-speaking
population that has bristled at Mr. Yushchenko’s embrace of the European
Union and NATO at the expense, as widely seen, of fraternal ties with
Russia.

Increasingly, though, the divisions appear less substantive and more
political and personal.

Kostyantyn Gryshchenko, a former foreign minister and an adviser to Mr.
Yanukovich, said that the Yanukovich camp was equally committed to
integrating Ukraine into the global economy and, eventually, into the
European Union, though NATO remains unpopular. Instead, he said, elections
increasingly turn on personalities.

“People here vote most likely for the leader whom they like,” he said in an
interview. “I would hesitate to say trust, but like is the right word.”

Others said that Ukrainian politics had simply become a struggle over access
to business. “Having power gives you the instruments to do business,” said
Oleksandr O. Moroz, who became speaker of Parliament after breaking with Mr.
Yushchenko’s camp last summer. “They are fighting for power to obtain these
instruments.”

The biggest concern in Ukraine is that elections are unlikely to
significantly change the makeup of Parliament. They could simply prolong the
failures to bolster the institutions necessary to allow democracy to
flourish, including prosecutors and courts independent of presidential
decrees and street protests.

Without institutional changes, said Anatoly K. Kinakh, who became minister
of the economy after defecting from Mr. Yushchenko’s camp this year, “this
election will not produce any better quality of democracy.”          -30-
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http://www.nytimes.com/2007/06/01/world/europe/01ukraine.html?pagewanted=1&_r=1,
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[return to index] [Action Ukraine Report (AUR) Monitoring Service]
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4.                            UKRAINE: ON THE EDGE

LEAD EDITORIAL: Financial Times
London, United Kingdom, Wed, May 30 2007