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Lesia Dorosh, Associate Professor of Department of Political Science: We are to look for new security guarantee

According to Time, two pictures from Ukraine — the confrontation in the Kyiv’s center in January and victims of downed near Donetsk Boeing 777, Malaysia Airlines flight — got to the momentous photos of 2014. The first one symbolizes breaking the old order in Ukraine, the second one — the post-war system of international relations. This is discussed with Lesia Dorosh, an Associate Professor of the Department of Political Science at Lviv Polytechnic National University.

— Two major emphasis of the year are the events that began in late 2013 due to the failure of an Ukraine-EU Association Agreement signing’ and further changes were related to regime and then, of course, the occupation of the Crimea and military operations in Eastern Ukraine. It is not officially named the war but there are acts of war followed by a significant number of victims and displaced residents. These internal events are closely related to the international context and the appropriate international response. Among the important events is Ukraine–European Union Association Agreement, which partially went into effect in November and EU-Ukraine Association Council is to start working in December. And then we start to perform points concerning justice, fight against corruption and so on.

Presidential and parliamentary elections in Ukraine were also important in 2014. We got a new government that is patriotic with pro-European views. Society expects the implementation of Maidan’s requirements, i.e.: quality changes of regime, the power management system. I agree with the analysts who say that the former oligarch management system screens itself behind the patriotic appeals and pro-European rhetoric of President Poroshenko. There are claims to the Prosecutor General, power, secrecy, authority planting. Quota principles maintain that was obvious during the government formation and the parliamentary committee’s distribution. The question is whether the current government is new or "new-old"? Is this government appropriate for that people who stood on the Maidan, who died there, who are currently at war or help militaries? We have currently partial changes and the old system is reproduced.

— How realistic is therefore the possibility of social protest?

— I believe, about 75%. The events of the last year showed that the level and ability to self-organization of Ukrainians is extremely high, new opinion leaders appeared (those whom society listens to’’’), new means of communicating thoughts (social network).

— How do you evaluate the presence of foreign ministers in the government that is a new experience for Ukraine?

— I support the government of technocrats and professionals. Some say that better professionals could be offered (e.g., instead of O. Kvitashvili). But there are many positive reviews about N. Jaresko, the Finance Minister. If they "won’t be eaten" by this system, if they intend to work on a base of the European standards and implement reforms - then why not? They can create new rules and changes.

What about the nomination of young people at certain positions, I think it is better to allow them to work and they will change the country in 2-3 years than we would retrain the old staff ineffectively for 10 years. Also it is positive that journalists and civil society activists are in our parliament. As for the ruling upper circles, it must be said that P.Poroshenko, the President and A.Yatsenyuk, the Prime Minister are people from the old system and old managerial experience.

— Ukraine announced its intention to abandon the policy of non-alignment. What does it mean?

— This was discussed at a recent meeting with the participation of NATO and Ukraine in a presidential speech to the parliament and now in the Government Program of 2015-16, although the corresponding changes aren’t included in the Ukrainian Law "Basic principles of domestic and foreign policy". Obviously, Ukraine demonstrates the desire to be engaged in a block of NATO in the future. But it is the prospect for the future and there is no unique position in the world in this. Meanwhile, we need guarantees now as there is a threat at our borders, in our land. We have to respond to it, look for options, new formats to ensure our national security (military, information and so on).

It is worth to mention the adoption of the law about military assistance to Ukraine by the USA Congress. Analysts say about the option of creating a new collective security subsystem which would include members of NATO, the EU-countries, countries, geographically close to Russia (Baltic countries, Poland, Sweden, and Finland), the Eastern Partnership countries (Ukraine, Georgia, Moldova, Azerbaijan, Armenia) and perhaps Turkey. These are the countries that have the potential or real, as in the case of Ukraine, threat from Russia. I would like Ukraine to be an initiated and cementing element of this association. Meanwhile, such states with nuclear weapons as the US, UK would be in this structure and play the role of observers and guarantors.

— The Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurances which ought to guarantee the sovereignty and security of Ukraine, as well as the actions of the OSCE and the UN are ineffective in a current situation...

— Yes, it became obvious that the system of international relations that formed after World War II was disrupted. The rules were followed even in the difficult time of the Soviet Union collapse. Today the basic principles of international relations are violated (mainly about conscientious fulfillment of international obligations). The world becomes uncertain. It is difficult to predict anything. But it is clearly that authority’s reforms and changing the system of international relations are needed.