Oleg Tsarev: Politicians in Kiev Make Statements About Capturing Donbass for Their Own Pre-Election PR

Translated by Ollie Richardson & Angelina Siard



When politicians in Kiev make statements about returning land by force, they are in reality pursuing ratings. They can also play around too much, assures the former people’s deputy Oleg Tsarev.

The winter comes to an end, and in Kiev the politicians who are again ready to “return” Donbass and Crimea to Ukraine with the use of weapons “wake up”.

The deputy of the Verkhovna Rada from the “People’s Front” faction Yury Bereza live on the airwaves declared that the Ukrainian army is of “one of the most capable armies of Europe”.

“Only the Ukrainian army, Ukrainian soldiers are capable of returning the sovereignty of both Donbass and Crimea,” he said.

The Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council Aleksandr Turchynov spoke practically at the same time as Bereza, but on another TV channel. He stated that the adopted law on the reintegration of Donbass doesn’t exclude the “armed liberation” of the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics. Turchynov specified that here it’s not a case of Kiev unambiguously “liberating” Donbass only by force, but the law creates the prerequisites for this purpose.

In Crimea the words of the people’s deputy Bereza were already called “hysterical statements”. The deputy of the State Council Vladislav Ganzhara emphasised that the security of Crimeans is ensured at the highest level, because on the peninsula most modern systems of air defense and other types of troops were deployed, and the loud statements of Kiev politicians are aimed, first of all, at the domestic audience.

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The former People’s Deputy Oleg Tsarev also agrees with this: the authorities try to give the impression that at least something is being done.

“I think that in light of statements that are coming from France, Germany, and the US, and the moving forward of the talks between Volker and Surkov (on a settlement of the situation in Donbass), the words of Ukrainian politicians are a way of increasing their worth. Nobody will listen to them. Elections approach. They try to raise their rating and to mobilise the electorate. That’s why there will be more and more of such statements,” noted Tsarev in a conversation with the correspondent of Politics Today.

However, Tsarev doesn’t exclude an offensive being carried out by the UAF in Donbass. Words will turn into actions if the President of Ukraine Poroshenko before elections (they are planned for March, 2019) will want to show his determination and to distract attention from the worsening situation in the country. The order for an offensive in Donbass can be given either by he himself or his associates, which will present Poroshenko with a fait accompli.

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