POLITICAL SITUATION IN UKRAINE

Linked with our presentations of Valentyna Dovzhenko – Ukraine, and of The Eurasia Foundation, also of Magic Reasons for Prosperity.

BY YULIYA TISHCHENKO, Analyst of the Ukrainian Independent Centre for Political Studies, Kyiv, July 31, 2006.

Ukraine’s acquisition of political stability is complicated. On the one hand, the negotiations on signing a “Universal of Ukrainian Unity” are going on, and the “big coalition” of the Party of Regions, Our Ukraine Bloc, the Socialist Party of Ukraine and the Communist Party of Ukraine has a good chance to be formed.

On the other hand, there are still many undecided issues that can lead to the breakdown of the talks. For example, the issue of Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic integration is not decided and the status of the Russian language wants additional discussion.

But the most important issue of the talks between the main Ukrainian political forces is a candidate for the premiership. This issue is of fundamental importance. Apparently, the Party of Regions insists on Viktor Yanukovych’s candidature. The problem for the negotiators is that he is not a consolidating politician. Besides, Yanukovych’s candidature is politicized by the past events connected with the “orange revolution”.

At the present time for Ukraine a less politicized and rather technocratic Prime-Minister, who would not be closely connected with one political camp, would be optimal. In this delicate situation Ukraine may witness any scenario, even the dissolution of the Verkhovna Rada. But this scenario is not the best for Ukraine, since all of the current events including the long-time process of formation of the parliamentary coalition may be repeated.

It is one of the reasons why Yuliya Tymoshenko Bloc has defected to the opposition. It is a strategic choice. Firstly, Yuliya Tymoshenko Bloc is efficient as the opposition force. Secondly, if the “big coalition” appears nobody will forecast for how long it will exist.

As regards the possibility of the CPU’s joining the “big coalition”, it looks illogical. In this case the coalition would be an ideological conglomeration encompassing the communists and the liberals, advocates of market economy.

However, tactically the Party of Regions is unlikely to approve the exclusion of the communists from the coalition. Firstly, the Party of Regions and the CPU have arranged for the mutual support. Secondly, the Communist Party is a political outsider, it has a small faction in the Verkhovna Rada.

Besides, the CPU’s voters have virtually defected to the Party of Regions. Thus, the Party of Regions may not take the CPU’s stand into consideration while addressing important issues. In prospect, the Party of Regions, if necessary, may sacrifice the CPU in the coalition to certain stability.

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