The passing week was full of crimson colors. It concerns not only the autumn dressing outside the window but also the bloody and negative events in Ukraine. The attack on Mykhailyk, Kateryna Handziuk’s appeal to the president and a new economic crisis on the horizon. But is there any light at the end of the tunnel? This will be better described by Oleg Sentsov and new details about his life in captivity. Learn more in the traditional digest of Opinion.
This time, the works of Anna Zvyagintseva, a Ukrainian artist, were selected for the visual accompaniment of the text. Perfectly feeling the picture and materials, Anna Zvyagintseva captures signs of everyday life, meetings, coincidences or autobiographical facts in her sculptures, drawings, and videos. The achievements of the young artist acquire the form of an intimate diary, that keeps the moments, ideas and actions, that would otherwise have been lost.
Tires on Khreshchatyk
Activists in Ukraine are not beaten now – they are being killed. Last Saturday, an unknown shot the Odesa activist Oleh Mykhailyk, who was going back home. The man had lost 2 liters of blood, omitted the apparent death and miraculously survived. Doctors still can’t pull a bullet out of his lungs because there’s a high risk of blood loss. Too drastic consequences as for concerned citizen, who 7 hours ago was on the action against the construction works at the seaside of Odesa. In the south of Ukraine, this is not the first case. Over a year, more than 50 attacks were reported by representatives of the public sector: from volunteer and “new wave” official Kateryna Handziuk to NABU supervisory director Vitaliy Ustymenko. In each case, the police start acting only after the threats of Ukrainians, numerous actions and the intervention of diplomats from Europe and the United States.
So the question arises: guilty ones are not found because of the unprofessional investigation or because of the involvement of ones who actually committed the crime? In any case, we don’t need such a law enforcement system. A few more years and there will be no people to “protect” left, except for the generals from an angry crowd.
On Friday, a rally “Silence Kills” was held on Bankova Street. The protesters urged the President to intervene in the work of the Ministry of Internal Affairs in order to stop the terrorism against activists. Petro Poroshenko in his statement supported the protesters but did not make any actual actions. Let’s hope this is just for now.
Poroshenko himself at that time was in New York at the United Nations General Assembly and due to the poor humor of the Russians gave birth to a new “meme”. The President of Ukraine on the sidelines confused with the door and entered the negotiating room of the Russians. “Apparently, he thought that there was a toilet,” Sergey Lavrov, the Foreign Minister of Russia, tried to make a joke. Social networks immediately exploded with ironic “and what is the difference between a Russian room and a toilet”. So, we laughed for a while and now let’s go back to really important things.
The President of Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko, during a speech at the 73rd session of the General Assembly of the United Nations, called for increased sanctions against Russia.
“The absence of appropriate punishment leads to the fact that after Georgia there was a turn of Ukraine, after Lytvynenko – Skrypal, after Aleppo – Idlib. The Kremlin is not going to stop there. After the occupation of the Crimea, the occupation of the Azov Sea is its purpose today,” said Poroshenko.
On the sidelines, after that, they spoke, that Poroshenko managed to form an anti-Putin coalition. Hence, one should hope that Ukraine will still wipe the dust away from pink European glasses.
Apparently, Mr. Vladimir didn’t come to New York. Yes, and it can be understood, since it is obvious, that the Kremlin’s owner is uncomfortable to appear on people after the real names and positions of the Salisbury poisoners have already been made public. In Russia Putin’s sycophants suffer a crushing defeat, in the North Caucasus, Chechnya is quarreling with Ingushetia, and in general, in a regulated country a systemic crisis brews up.
But not everything is so good in international relations. At least economic ones. The mission of the IMF has finished its work in Ukraine, and the negotiations about billions of worth loans are still ongoing. It is already clear, that Ukraine won’t implement an enhanced cooperation program with a creditor signed in 2015 to its full extent. It provides for the continuation of reforms, and on the eve of the double election, it is an extremely difficult task.
That is why the parties tried to bet on the second option: to agree on a new, shorter program of cooperation. According to the given information, it’s going to be the stand-by program for 12-15 months and 5-6 billion USD worth.
According to experts, it’s not about growth, but about survival in the current economic crisis.
The main debate is around the price of gas. In late August, Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman began to say in public, that the price of gas (and, as a consequence, tariffs) would increase, as this is the main condition for cooperation with the IMF. It is already known, that fuel will be more expensive by 23%.
Also, the lenders demand an anti-corruption reform, balanced budget, and the tax system reform. Do you think our politicians can do this? And the debt must be returned.
Not only debts must be returned, but also, that do not belong to you, that must be free and alive. As always, it’s about Oleg Sentsov and other captives of the Kremlin. Convicted in Russia, the Ukrainian director wrote a letter to human rights defender Zoya Svetovaya.
“I’m grateful to those people, who still continue to support me, and most importantly all other Ukrainian political prisoners. They don’t give up, me as well. I believe in the happy end of this story, no matter what. Nothing is eternal, even bad,” Svetovaya cites the words from the letter of Sentsov.
He noted that he had not hoped to hold on for so long and doesn’t know for how long he can keep it, but he didn’t give up.
We as well. And we believe in the happy end of this horrible story.
By Kostyantyn Rul