Ukrainian President Yanukovych has agreed to hold a presidential election before the end of the year, as part of a deal to end the crisis. He also agreed to a national unity government, and to reinstall the constitution of 2004, thereby reducing the power of the president.
On 18 February clashes broke out near Ukraine’s parliament. At the time of writing of this article, already seven people were killed, according to some sources and more than hundred people are injured. Injuries are also reported among police officers. On 19 February twenty-five deaths are reported
In Ukraine, tensions between the people on the street and the current government are increasing every day. Demonstrations have turned deadly and hundreds have been injured as demonstrators clash with the `Berkut` the riot police. Currently, president Yanukovich is put under pressure by the outraged people, by the European Union, and even by the Russian president Putin. Even though the media have been reporting greatly on the unrest, many things remained unclear. Foundation Max van der Stoel figured it was time for a debate.
On 16 January Ukraine’s parliament passed a sweeping antiprotest law that criminalizes almost every aspect of the pro-EU protest movement. Pro-government Party of Regions (PoR) politicians defended the new measures, saying they protected the public against protests that endanger public safety or the smooth operation of public institutions. The opposition said this act was illegal, accusing the ruling party of a coup.
In Europe, the past two weeks have been a time of respite from politics as people celebrated Christmas and new year. At the same time in Kyiv, thousands of Ukrainians kept spending day and night on “Euromaidan”, protesting against the blocking of their road to Europe.
De afgelopen week zijn de protesten in Oekraïne steeds prominenter op het Nederlandse nieuws gaan figureren. De protesten die begonnen met tien duizenden zijn uiteindelijk geëscaleerd tot honderden duizenden mensen die nu non-stop protesteren in de straten van Kiev en andere Oekraïnse steden. Wat begon als een pro-Europa protest – en tegen de keus van de regering om een associatieverdrag met de EU op het laatste moment toch niet te tekenen - lijkt uitgegroeid tot iets veel groters. We vroegen onze partner in Oekraïne, de Institute for Democracy and Social Progress (IDSP) om commentaar. Directrice van IDSP, Olena Lukaniuk, geeft antwoord.
On 16 November the II Forum of the NEW SOCIAL DEMOCRATIC PLATFORM took place in Kiev. The platform brings together young, progressive social democrats from accross Ukraine, to form the new, modern and European social democractic core in Ukraine.