Ukraine’s security and well-being requires strengthening relations with Western partners in Europe. This was stated by the deputy head of Ukraine’s Presidential Administration Valeriy Chaly during his press briefing at Ukraine Crisis Media Center. The Ukrainian government must forge closer relations in the economic, military, and technical sphere with Europe in order to successfully bolster security and the economy. Last week’s discussions in Milan were extremely difficult, but important and successful, and Europe firmly demonstrated its united support for Ukraine. Even despite aggression in the Donbas region, the government must press forward with the necessary reforms.
“The result [of Milan] for us is a clear united position of European partners to support Ukraine,” stated Chaly. The European Union is unified in its support for Ukraine’s sovereignty in an environment of extreme external pressure. The Council of the European Union also passed a document which upholds the EU’s commitment to the execution of the Minsk peace plan for the Donbas.
Ukraine needs to honor Europe’s commitment by successfully implementing necessary and difficult reforms. Reform is necessary for Kyiv to receive economic assistance and the additional USD 2 billion is needed. “It is important to understand the other side – Ukraine needs to commit to reforms despite the external pressure,” said Chaly.
For one, the Ukrainian government hopes to deepen ties with the Visegrad countries of central Europe through pragmatic cooperation and joint programs to strengthen Ukrainian institutions.
Chaly acknowledged troubling developments in the east, denouncing the plans for the authorities of the self-declared Luhansk and Donetsk People’s Republics to hold elections.
“Any attempt to elect the parliament and president of the so-called Luhansk and Donetsk republics will not be recognized by the international community and will only exacerbate problems,” he said. In addition, he pointed out recent aggressive statements by the pro-Russian groups in the Donbas. “They stated that the next step after elections in the region will be an attack and the next point is Kyiv,” stated Chaly.
The deputy head of the Presidential Administration also responded to inquiries about the alleged use of cluster bombs by the Ukrainian military in civilian areas of Donetsk, saying that such accusations by human rights groups require further investigation.
“I think we need to have a special internal investigation in Ukraine,” stated Chaly. He blamed Russia and Vladimir Putin for civilian casualties in the Donbas. “Close the border, respect the cease fire, free our hostages, don’t create new political problems,” concluded Chaly.
Source: Ukraine Crisis Media Center