The winner of the second round studiously avoided foreign policy issues on the eve of the vote. But after the announcement of the first results had to reveal the cards: Yes, the Normandy format and Minsk process will continue.
Unfortunately, Vladimir Zelensky difficult to enter one of the most important sectors of its immediate functions of the external policy. It does not have even the minimum experience in the public administration, and career art Director is unlikely to fully compensate for the lack of skills and knowledge as a public policy, writes No. 8 Magazine Reporter.
Foreign policy team? It still does not show. Yes, Zelensky presented as a key foreign policy expert of the ex-Minister of Finance of the government of Vladimir Groisman – Alexander danyluk. But he said that he was not interested in the post of Minister of foreign Affairs. Willingly commented on the foreign policy theme, political adviser of the new President, Dmitry Razumkov, which was intended mainly for domestic politics. And the chance to see him at the head of the foreign Ministry frankly low.
During the first round of the team Zelensky distinguished by the fact that, answering a question of journalists on prospects of European integration, talked about the “action plan for EU membership”, although European integration does not imply such a procedure. Over this innocent mistake then joked, but good-naturedly. The main thing is not the error itself, and the fact that she shows. Namely, this means that about such a sensitive issue, the team Zelensky was not prepared Q&A, that is, the selection of precise answers to important and frequently asked questions.
As for NATO and a referendum on membership, which argued Zelensky during the election campaign that this scheme is at the moment irrelevant. By the way, it’s hard to imagine another described Zelensky technology of negotiations (it was about Russia): they will present their claims, we are of his, and try to find the truth somewhere in the middle. And, by the way, due to the movement of Ukraine towards NATO including.
In Moscow, it seems, in principle, does not intend to create hothouse conditions of the sixth Ukrainian President. There waiting for concessions. And, according to recent news from the Kremlin, are preparing hard starting conditions. Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev on April 18 announced a ban on exports to Ukraine of oil and oil products from June 1, 2019, in essence, a similar decision taken in respect of the coal.
Viktor Medvedchuk meanwhile, in an interview with Reuters hire a trial balloon: he said that in the case of understanding the new Ukrainian President Vladimir Putin and Kiev will receive the restoration of control over Donbass, cheap gas and Russian investment. Apparently, more convincing proposals Zelensky, elected on the ninth anniversary of the signing between Russia and Ukraine Kharkiv agreements on black sea fleet of the Russian Federation in Crimea, the first Russian officials congratulated him with election of Ramzan Kadyrov, to which Vladimir had to apologize in the “quarterly period”.
But some of the same whips: possible and gingerbread – for example, there may be liberation, for example, Ukrainian prisoners of war, sailors captured in November 2018. For Moscow, it is not too valuable concession, but it is able to show clearly the differences between Zelensky and Petro Poroshenko, and will give the new President an excuse to enter into negotiations with the Kremlin. Yes, the occasion fragile, but the beginning.
What’s next? Many argue that here there is some kind of gambit: the West is not averse to close the delicate issue of the conflict in the Donbass, which interfere constantly and deeply troubled the Europeans to do business as usual with Russia. Even by pressure on Ukraine, which for the fifth year actively offer to make peace with Russia “somewhere in between”.
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However, in this context, sounded reassuring calls of US Secretary of state Mike Pompeo on the eve of the second round of Donald trump – after the announcement of the exit polls. Overseas politicians seem to have taken a position, which announced the special envoy of the US state Department in Ukraine Kurt Volker: “We came here for a long time and will continue to support democratic reforms in Ukraine”. Everyone can see in these words something of their own. Someone- hint at the inadmissibility of the use of the usual Ukrainian political life instruments to influence the outcome of elections. Someone demand to stay away from the Kremlin, which blamed the shadow impact on the Ukrainian domestic political situation.
Apparently, not all will definitely be in the issue of reformatting the Minsk and Normandy formats, Zelensky cheerfully promised during the election campaign. It seems that in his team he remembered that international sanctions against Russia tied to the Minsk agreements reached in February 2015. Yes, and about the interests of Alexander Lukashenko, promoting a special peacekeeping status of Belarus, the official Kiev should not be forgotten.
In fact, after the announcement of the first victorious reports Zelensky acknowledged that both formats are still effective and to break in this sector it seems to be not intend to. But until he has that to Minsk that the Normandy had questions.
Zelensky received congratulations from NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, but his team chose to highlight a phone conversation with Emmanuel Macron. The recent meeting with the French President, it seems, flattered the vanity of the new Ukrainian policy.
However, overly deluded with phone calls from the powers that be is clearly not worth it. As well as do not expect a breakthrough in the issues of Euro-Atlantic integration – Ukraine expects a lot more rough and thankless job. And even the personal invitation of Angela Merkel Zelensky to visit Berlin yet rather advance, than the recognition of a new President in the role of a significant player in the international field.
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Zelensky and congratulated the head of the European Council Donald Tusk. And the President of Poland, Andrzej Duda, and all were invited to visit Warsaw. The new Ambassador of Poland in Ukraine Bartosz Tsihotsky have not had time to present his credentials to the President of our country, and it is unknown whether he had to wait for the inauguration Zelensky. The Polish-Ukrainian conflict, like difficulties in relations with Hungary will not disappear by themselves (for example, in Transcarpathia was recorded the lowest turnout of voters – about 30%), so the President and his appointee, the foreign Ministry will have to keep an eye on.
The Western press is actively discussing such detail that the President of Ukraine became a Jew by nationality, and despite the fact that Prime has the same origins. In Ukraine relate to this in any way, just don’t pay attention to the nationality of the politicians. But for Europe this is a serious argument against the claims of Russian propaganda on gaining power in our country, xenophobia and anti-Semitism.
Then the visit to Israel is obvious, but the agreement on free trade zone there, Poroshenko signed as recently as January of this year. So among the possible trump cards – only the transfer of the Ukrainian Embassy to Jerusalem or the recognition of the sovereignty of the Jewish state over the Golan heights, which is hardly acceptable for Ukraine in connection with the situation around the Russian-annexed Crimea.
The solution to the problem of the return of the Crimea to be discussed first of all with the Republic of Turkey, whose leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan has not only its own vision of relations with Russia, but also obvious interests in the black sea basin.
Erdogan is not without reason, sees himself as the leader of a regional superpower. And therefore in fellowship with him need to look very, very toothy negotiator, defending Ukrainian interests in the process of preparing for the establishment of a free trade zone between the two countries.
As of the end of April 2019 Ukraine’s foreign policy looks for the sixth President of the country’s toughest challenge is almost too much to bear. The more that its predecessor not just managed to achieve impressive outcomes in its foreign policy. Poroshenko has made full use of his considerable diplomatic experience and knowledge of the English, than plunged the Western partners of Ukraine in considerable astonishment, because in this sense, differed from its predecessors.
To honor Poroshenko publicly offered Zelensky after his inauguration to accept his help in the transmission network of foreign policy contacts. Zelensky such support would be very useful – continuity in foreign policy have never been hurt. And while we can only hope for the presentation of a strong foreign policy team that will be able to generate original and effective solutions. Time for its formation there are very few.