Original article in GERMAN could be found here: http://www.stuttgarter-nachrichten.de/inhalt.umsturz-in-der-ukraine-das-volk-will-anerkennung.e9f92e10-2509-4efe-a25d-a6bc5d5ff604.html
“A nation that seeks recognition”
On the photo: Maidan commemorates the victims of the conflicts
Photo of: Getty Images Europe
Kyiv/Munich – Maryna Mudra witnessed first-hand the fall of Yanukovych’s regime while staying on the Maidan this weekend. The Ukrainian has been living in Germany for already 12 years. She expects from EU first and foremost help in developing democratic institutions in the country.
Ms Mudra, tell us what is the mood on Maidan?
It could be described as being full of expectation. People aren’t sure what is to come now, but they are hoping for the best.
Julia Tymoshenko called out to people to continue staying on Maidan till the power transfer has been fully completed.
People intend to stay anyway independently of any such summons. There is little trust in politicians, that’s why people are determined to monitor the power transfer from Maidan square to oversee that everyone plays by the book.
Is Julia Tymoshenko about to become a new powerful female figure in Ukrainian politics?
Her support at the moment is not as high as it is believed to be here in Germany. Compared to the period before the elections in 2010 she is now supported by only a small group of faithful supporters.
My impression is that most Ukrainians wouldn’t want to see her as the new president. Some have no trust in her as a political figure and never had any before. Others believe that due to a long absence from politics Tymoshenko is no longer fully aware of the realities of the day, and that’s why she should stay out of it.
But what are the alternatives?
It’s hard to say; people have no great trust in the opposition in general, but there are certain members of the opposition and activists’ groups, who proved themselves during the three month of confrontations. One could mention deputies Arsen Avakov and Olesya Orobets; the first is now the acting minister of internal affairs and the second worked to free activists from special police forces. Andrej Parubij and Olexandr Turchynov could also be named. Parubij has worked as a commandant of the Maidan; Turchynov has been entrusted with presidential duties till the time the newly elected president can claim the seat [elections are scheduled for May 2014 – editorial, Voices of Ukraine (VoU)].
What could be the role for Vitalij Klychko in all this?
In the last few days I haven’t heard much from him. He might just be preoccupied with sorting his plans for the next few months. I expect him to run for presidential seat.
A new government of national unity is about to be formed; it is supposed to include members of the Yanukovych’s political party [Party of the Regions – VoU]. Do you think this is a good idea?
Members of the Party of the Regions will certainly have to be included in the process of decision-making at least for the time being. This will prevent people of South and East regions from feeling excluded from the state-building process. [Traditionally Party of the Regions enjoys the strongest support in south-eastern Ukraine and the least in western parts of the country – VoU]. Inclusion of the Party of the Regions into the present political process is a compromise to avoid any possible conflicts.
How could EU help Ukraine in the present situation?
First and foremost EU has to recognise and accept Ukraine as a truly independent state and its citizens as able to speak for themselves. People simply want to be recognised as a nation. No matter what ethnicities live in Ukraine – Russians, Polish, Tatars, Jews, Greeks – we all are part of one nation. We are Ukrainians and not merely some runaway satellite of Russia. And this should be the level of the discourse between EU and Ukraine. That being said, a quick and unimpeded return to the treaty signing with EU would be a first step and an important signal [meant is the treaty, which was supposed to be signed in November 2013 – VoU]. Support with knowledge and expertise would also be greatly appreciated. Legal and judiciary systems need improvement; economic life should be better organised. If EU wishes to help, it should send experts not bureaucrats to Ukraine. West is also expected to assist with the installation of control systems to prevent another such abuse of office from happening. Critical at this moment is the knowledge transfer, only then could financial help reach its goal and stabilise the situation. It is essential to give people of Ukraine instruments to initiate the democratic changes.