Archive for May 27th, 2010

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Excellent News – I am happy for Ukraine

May 27, 2010

 Interfax-Ukraine Ukrainian Vice-Premier Sergiy Tigipko has said he expects a free trade area to be created between Ukraine and Norway, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, and Iceland in a month.

He said this at a visiting session of the Council of Regions in Lviv on Thursday. “I think that in a month we’ll sign free trade area [agreements] with the EFTA [European Free Trade Association] countries – Norway, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, and Iceland,” Tigipko said.

He also noted that work on the creation of a free trade area between Ukraine and Turkey would start during Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s planned visit to Ukraine.

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The return of Soviet Crimea!

May 27, 2010

Interfax-Ukraine Simferopol, May 26 (Interfax-Ukraine) – The Crimean parliament has introduced amendments to the Constitution of the autonomy, according to which the name of the Crimean parliament when used in text in the Russian language, is changed from the Verkhovna Rada (the Supreme Council as spelled in Ukrainian) of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea to the Verkhovny Soviet (the Supreme Council as spelled in Russian) of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea.

This decision was supported by 76 out of 94 members of the Crimean council registered for voting on Wednesday, May 26. Four members voted against.

 

Yeh, OK dear readers, not as dramatic as it sounds…….RADA and Soviet mean the same thing just one is a Ukrainian word and the other Russian.

I didn’t mean to infer that the communists had taken over Crimea in a coup……well OK may be I did mean to infer it just so you would read this and think it was a world turning event.

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NATO statement – Ukraine “Unprecedented”?

May 27, 2010

NATO is calling Ukrainian interaction with it “unprecidented”……

Interfax-Ukraine NATO has said there is no precedent to the behavior of Ukraine, which has been working with the Alliance in the frame of the Annual National Program, and yet at the same time announced that it has no plans to join the alliance.

“It is an unprecedented experience for a country, which has been working in the frames of the Annual National Program, not to want to become NATO member,” NATO Assistant Secretary General for Defense Policy and Planning Jiri Sedivy said at a meeting with Ukrainian reporters.

At the same time, the NATO representative has said that this issue is not a matter of discussion within the alliance. NATO respects Ukraine’s decisions, Sedivy said.

How are you supposed to read that statement? 

Ukraine is doing everything that NATO could possibly hope for……but why doesn’t it want to join us?

Well, apart from it being unconstitutional to put a new foreign base or troops on Ukrainian soil, (although there is a clause for extending existing leases as employed to allow the RBSF to stay longer), the vast majority of the Ukrainian public are still anti NATO.

Firstly, Ukraine cannot afford to upgrade its military to meet NATO standards and there are numerous NATO members who seem to be in a much worse economic situation than Ukraine and therefore cannot afford to assist in this upgrade.

Secondly, as I have already said, the Ukrainian Constitution specifically forbids new foreign bases or troops on Ukrainian soil.

Thirdly, the current government is seeking non-aliegned status and even possibly internationally recognised neutral status and plays similar war games with the CIS members as well.

Lastly it would be a diplomatic and political nightmare for Ukraine to enter NATO and be the immediate border with Russia who still view NATO with some suspicion……and not just a nightmare for Ukraine but NATO itself in the current climate.

Why is it unprecidented for a neighbour to want to engage in mutually beneficial enterprises but not want to join the club? 

Why is it so hard to believe Ukraine does not want to join NATO……..or any other military block?

When NATO had the chance to allow Ukraine in the club in GW Bush’s swan song era, France, Germany, Italy and Spain were all against it with a pro NATO President sat in power in Ukraine.  Now there is a president who is not interested in joining, NATO wants to know why when cooperation is still high?

Why do such organsiations see everything as “all or nothing”?

My personal view, as well documented here historically, is that Ukraine should seek internationally recognised neutrality eventually and in the mean time, I would be pleased to see a continued path of non-aliegnment militarily…….and keeping good relations and bilateral interests served with both NATO and the CIS nations.

Be happy in NATO, you are getting cooperation without the financial or geopolitical fallout!

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