Yanukovych warned about the loss of statehood by Ukraine
The former president of Ukraine, who fled to Russia, believes that the Ukrainian authorities are making a mistake by moving closer to Poland. This could lead to a de facto merger of the two countries. Yanukovych previously addressed Zelensky in early March
Ex-president of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovych said about the danger of complete destruction of the country's statehood. The former Ukrainian president, who fled the country in 2014, wrote about this in an article published on his Facebook page (the social network belongs to Meta Platforms, the Tverskoy Court of Moscow recognized the company as extremist and banned its activities) by his press secretary Yuri Kirasir.
“No matter how painful it is for me to write about this today, the statehood of Ukraine is in extreme danger. She is in danger of total annihilation. At the same time, we are talking not only about the risk of losing huge territories in the south and east of the country, — wrote Yanukovych.
In his opinion, “the current situational rapprochement [of Kyiv] with Poland threatens a situation where Ukraine will be forced to actually merge with it.” The reason for such a merger, Yanukovych believes, could be “the threat of [Ukraine's] economic failure to defend sovereignty.” “This will be the result of the realization of the European dream, for which the Ukrainian people allegedly went to their last Maidan,” — predicts the former president.
President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky on May 22 proposed to grant the Poles a special legal status in the country. A draft of such a law will be developed by the Ukrainian Ministry of Foreign Affairs by analogy with the Polish law on support for citizens of Ukraine.
At the same time, Yanukovych says that Ukraine will have to sit down at the negotiating table with Russia. “The West and the United States will push her to this as well. <…> I do not know under what conditions a peace treaty will be concluded between Ukraine and Russia, but I regret to assume that it will not be in favor of my country. It is unbearably painful for me to talk about this publicly, — writes Yanukovych, noting that one cannot talk with Russia from a position of strength and that “deep dialogue” is needed between countries.
Earlier, Yanukovych appealed in absentia to Zelensky with a call to stop the bloodshed in the country and reach a peace agreement “at any cost.” “I want to appeal to Vladimir Zelensky in a presidential and even a little paternal way. Vladimir Alexandrovich, you probably dream of becoming a real hero! But heroism is not ostentatious, it is not about fighting to the last Ukrainian. He is in self-sacrifice, in the victory over his own pride and ambitions for the sake of saving people's lives, — Yanukovych said on March 8, emphasizing that “in any tragedy there is a moment when it can still be stopped.”
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Then the publication “Ukrainian Truth” citing sources in national intelligence reported that Yanukovych was in Minsk and could return to Ukraine as head of state. In Kyiv, the assumption that the ex-president may return to power was considered an “insult to Ukraine.”
Mikhail Podolyak, an adviser to the head of the Ukrainian president's office, called Yanukovych a “political corpse.” “So long an outsider with such a toxic reputation that the mention of his last name even sounds somehow defiant. Definitely will only provoke more resistance. As, by the way, are the names of [Viktor] Medvedchuk and [Evgeny] Muraev, — Podolyak told reporters.
He called the story that Yanukovych is in Minsk “enchanting”; and noticed that only those who do not understand the specifics of modern Ukraine could come up with it.
Later, on March 14, Yanukovych in an interview with RIA Novosti stated that Zelensky rejected the settlement plan in the Donbass proposed by the ex-president's team. According to Yanukovych, this plan “was drawn up step by step and provided for a peace agreement between Ukraine and Donbass, the creation of a fund for the restoration of the region and its political, economic and social reintegration.” The draft document also provided for the signing of security guarantees by the United States and Russia.
In August 2021, Yanukovych, in an address dedicated to the 30th anniversary of Ukraine's independence, said that his country's main mistake during this period was the rejection of good neighborly relations with Russia .
Viktor Yanukovych served as President of Ukraine from 2010 to 2014. Amid mass protests in Kyiv, he left for Russia. In 2015, the Verkhovna Rada stripped him of the title of president. Yanukovych tried several times to challenge this decision, the last lawsuit he filed in January of this year. Several criminal cases were initiated against the ex-president in Ukraine, including treason. In 2019, in this case, he was sentenced in absentia to 13 years in prison. Yanukovych himself denied his guilt.
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