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9 April, 2013 11:00   ▪  

Pawel Kowal: Lutsenko`s pardon was the success of Ukrainian government, opposition, European diplomats and politicians but not that of Ukraine

Yuriy Lutsenko`s pardon has only given Ukraine some time, Pawel Kowal, member of the European Parliament and Chair of EU-Ukraine Parliamentary Cooperation Committee, notes in his opinion for New Eastern Europe.

“…it is worth stressing that pardoning Lutsenko, one of the most intelligent opposition politicians in Ukraine, is a success of the persuasion towards the Ukrainian government and the success of a policy of “keeping face” by all participants in the conflict and discussion: starting from the opposition to the Ukrainian government and the European politicians who, up to their ears, have been engaged in this Ukrainian conflict.

This is also the success of Alexander Kwaśniewski and Pat Cox. But also Martin Schultz, the current President of the European Parliament, who supported their mission despite the opposition of European politicians, but also – at times – common sense and rational calculations,” Kowal claims.

Kowal believes that Ukrainian problem does not lie with one person as it is the problem of the system as a whole.

“Hence, one can also say that the pardoning of Lutsenko is the success of President Yanukovych who has showed that he is capable of generosity; but, formally, it is also a success for Lutsenko as, upon the petition of Ukraine’s Ombudsman and not the pressures of the West, he has been able to leave his prison cell.

READ ALSO: The Lutsenko Pardon: Enough to Appease the EU?

It is also the success of a few Ukrainian diplomats stationed in Brussels, Washington, DC and Warsaw, who I am convinced were sending messages about the need to make a “gesture” in every dispatch to Kyiv. This pardon is also the success of Ukraine’s minister of foreign affairs, Leonid Kozhara, who, although often irritated with the constant talking in Brussels about the cases of Tymoshenko and Lutsenko, understood, better than most, the importance of this issue. And this pardon is also the success of some European politicians and diplomats who were waiting for a positive signal from Bankova Street in Kyiv; and the success of the Polish President, Bronisław Komorowski, who conditioned his relationship with President Yanukovych on the solving of Lutsenko's case.

Only Ukraine has not had success here. It has only won some time. Ukraine’s success will come with the signing of the Association Agreement with the European Union due to take place in the autumn at the Eastern Partnership Summit in Vilnius, Lithuania. Until then, we will still probably see a few sharp political turns. Ukrainian politics is a profession for people with strong nerves,” Kowal highlights.

READ ALSO: Taking a Break as a Strategy

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