10. jaanuar 2015

Kõne Ukraina presidendiga kohtumiselt Strasbourgis

26.06.2014 peetud kõne Ukraina küsimuste arutelul ja presidendiga kohtumisel Euroopa Nõukogu Parlamentaarsel assambleel.

Presentation by Liisa Pakosta (Estonia, EPP/CD)

Thank you, Madam President!

Do we REALLY care about Ukraine?

The answer is certainly YES when it comes to being concerned about the potential influx of Ukrainian refugees to our countries or the lack of Ukrainian and Russian tourists in the “cash-short” Mediterranean resorts this year.

BUT – as a new member of this Assembly – I’m stunned that we’re not even having an urgent debate with a proper resolution today. Yes, one may argue that we’ve held three debates on Ukraine already this year and we have imposed – what I find rather minimalist - restrictions on our Russian colleagues’ rights in the Assembly, hoping to maintain an open and constructive dialogue… But does this hall really want to admit Russia’s true motivations and goals, and the consequences they lead to? Or to fully comprehend the complications and repercussions of what we choose to call, euphemistically, as “the Ukraine crisis” – rather than Russia’s aggression against Ukraine?

Again, I’m perplexed… We’re dealing with WAR in the heart of Europe, provoked and supported by our own member state. The international community has reacted by the mildest possible reactions, and yet ALL our political group leaders – I repeat ALL – are co-signatories of Mr Pushkov’s motion questioning even those mild sanctions limited to a few individuals directly involved in inciting the violation of a neighbouring country’s sovereign territory!! Colleagues, where are we heading for?

Yesterday’s commemoration of the First World War was a sinister reminder that we should learn from our past mistakes…or be doomed to the fate of the League of Nations. Military solutions DO NOT belong to the 21st century! I therefore welcome President Poroshenko’s truce plan…, as I welcome the revoking by the Russian Federation Council of the outrageous law which gave the Russian military the right for military intervention on its neighbours’ territory. The first step is now to help Ukraine restore control over its Eastern border and to create a proper humanitarian corridor to enable civilians a safe passage from the combat zones.

Yet we need to remain vigilant and not be naïve to mistake the latter move for President Putin’s regret of his recent wrongdoings. Rather, having achieved his primary objectives of stopping the integration of Ukraine into Western structures, annexing Crimea and provoking disorder and armed conflict in the rest of the country, Mr Putin is now playing with the de-escalation card in order to normalise the relations with other countries. As cynical as it may be, despite all the breaches of international norms, I can already see Russia returning in a few months’ time to the circle of elite states as a fully-fledged member.

If we allow that and if Europe closes its eyes now on Ukraine as it closed them in Georgia in 2008, it would mean recognising Russia’s right to forcefully make strategic decisions for the countries in the region. This failure to stop aggression would however bear the enormous consequence of putting an end to the whole system of international security in Europe.

Finally, the Ukrainian government also has a herculean task to undertake to reconciliate the country. It should not shy from the difficult reforms – be they constitutional, judicial or administrative -, which Ukraine has failed to undertake since it became member of the Council of Europe. Most importantly, I appeal to President Poroshenko: please do not repeat the mistakes made after the Orange revolution! Those who have committed crimes since the outset of the political crisis last year – no matter on which side – need to be brought to justice. It is the only way forward to lead your country out of its internal political crisis and to restore the trust of your people!

Thank you!

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