In January Jacek Krawczyk, President of the EESC Employers Group, said he thought that the European Economic and Social Committee must stand up for the rights of citizens whenever they are violated, especially when this happens through police brutality. He was pleased to see the European Parliament’s statement on Ukraine and he would have liked to see a similar resolution adopted by the EESC. These political signals are very important for people protesting in Kiev, enduring the bitter, freezing cold.
The Employers Group had already published a statement concerning the situation in Ukraine in December last year. They had condemned the violence used by the authorities to suppress peaceful demonstrations by people expressing their disagreement with the Ukrainian leadership’s decision to turn away from a pro-European path. Members of the Employers Group were also robust in their condemnation of the pressure exerted on Ukraine’s leaders not to sign the association agreement with the EU.
Should Europe and the United States now not come to see what the majority of the Crimea wanted. Would it not be a democratic process when most of those who went to vote said they wanted something, that it would be granted also if others do not like it. the West may not like it that the Crimean citizens gave their voice to the dictator Putin. In case they are lured in a wrong vote, would we not consider it their own free choice and their own ‘stupidity’ when it proved to be wrong. But who is going to tell the people made a wrong choice?
Head of the Crimean State Council Vladimir Konstantinov does not seem to be worried. He told journalists on Thursday that relations between Crimea and Ukraine will resume some day.
“These relations will certainly normalize sooner or later,”
“Life goes on. We have business and economy. We have high season ahead. A rich harvest has been gathered and this will be a great tragedy for them if they fail to get here.”
I also think the West is more afraid than it should be. It may not get the paranoid reaction like the Ameericans seem to get more and more? Look what is happening in Den Haag and Belgium these days for the visit of Obama. Holland and Belgium like fortresses where roads are totally blocked for the citizens because president Obama is going to pass there. Even when there would be people who would like to show their support to Obama, they are not allowed to greet or see him.
For the Ukraine and Crimea the West may not forget that they have more mutual interests than differences. On the one hand we always shall have politics, but on the other hand we shall always have the stronger cultural and emotional connection. To have everything going smoothly between the different groups or nationalities, it is more important that there can be build a constructive dialogue. That can only happen when Ukraine has an adequate government.
“Today, many experts believe that they are just helping us, doing everything possible to make us more convinced than before, of the necessity of the reunification,”
Vladimir Konstantinov said.
“But I am absolutely sure that our relations will start normalizing eventually,”
he said, adding that there should be no negative attitude towards people of Ukraine.
People could have brought out their vote in the South. The East would also like to have a referendum. Why not grant the people a voice? Why should Europe be so afraid that those people chose for Russia, and connect with their ancestors? In case Europe would concentrate more on working together and offering more possibilities to have better trade accords and commercial activity, it would be able to gain more.
An association agreement would open the way for Ukraine to develop its democracy, good governance, the rule of law and respect for human rights. It would also help to build a strong economy based on a free, transparent and open market with high European standards, which would secure a better life for Ukrainians.
Russia’s Federal Migration Service hopes to issue passports to Crimean residents within three months, deputy head of the Federal Migration Service (FMS) Sergei Kalyuzhnyi said on Monday:
“As of today 5,500 passports have been completed, the Head of the Russian Federal Migration Service Konstantin Romodanovsky said.
Census returns showed more than two million people living in Crimea,
Kalyuzhnyi said, adding
“Much work should be done because it is not easy to generate such a number of documents. We’ve started the work and we’ll end it in due time.”
“Many people wish for Russian passports and of course there are queues. People want them as soon as possible,”
he said, noting that about 20,000 Crimean residents were located in various Russian regions.
“They have no need to go to Crimea to receive the passport. They can get it in any FMS office”, he noted.
“The task is difficult and much should be done,” he said, adding “The key point is to receive an application from a citizen to make him to feel calm.”
It is interesting to note also that:
“No Crimeans have given up Russian citizenship yet,”