Mychailo Wynnyckyj: Thoughts from Kyiv – 7 May 2014

Voices of Ukraine

Mychailo Wynnyckyj PhD Professor at Kyiv-Mohyla Academy Mychailo Wynnyckyj PhD
Professor at Kyiv-Mohyla Academy

It would seem that President Putin may have blinked in the face of pressure from the West today. After meeting with OSCE Chairman and Swiss President Didier Burkhalter, Putin suddenly announced that he was “asking” separatist forces in Donetsk and Luhansk (whose armed insurgency, according to the Kremlin’s official position, is being waged with no Russian involvement) to delay the referenda on independence of their oblasts previously planned for Sunday May 11. Even more surprisingly, the Russian President referred to the May 25 Ukrainian Presidential election as “a step in the right direction” – thereby directly contravening yesterday’s statement by Foreign Minister Lavrov in which the diplomat doubted the legitimacy of Ukraine’s planned vote. Most importantly, Putin promised to move Russian troops away from the immediate proximity of Ukraine’s borders – NATO has yet to confirm troop movements, but the prospect of a…

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