Rostislav Ishchenko: Saakashvili Can Serve as a Protest Banner Either Dead or Alive

Translated by Ollie Richardson & Angelina Siard


The former governor of Odessa Mikheil Saakashvili, who begun a
campaign to overthrow Petro Poroshenko’s, having declared the beginning of the
“people’s impeachment”, was detained [but later set free by radicals – ed] in Kiev. It is also reported that police officers of Ukraine used tear gas against Saakashvili’s supporters. What the consequences are of this already-begun standoff, what will the people’s impeachment become? These and other questions were answered by the President of the Center For System Analysis and Forecasting Rostislav Ishchenko.

“Now it is difficult to evaluate the prospects of the ‘people’s impeachment’. This will depend on the form of further pressure placed on Poroshenko chosen by those who stand up for Saakashvili. Now it is possible to re-qualify oneself as the liberator of the victims of the regime, to fight for Saakashvili’s freedom, etc. It is also possible to stage a couple of skirmishes with blood. There are a range of options.

But I think that ‘project Saakashvili’ can disappear: he can be sent to Georgia, and can also get lost on the way. But after all, we understand that all of this was invented not by Saakashvili, who doesn’t even have Ukrainian citizenship, and whose rating is about 0.5%. Those who organized this — Tymoshenko, Nalyvaichenko, Sadovyi, Kolomoisky, etc. — will continue to force the agenda.

The situation already reached an open standoff. What is it if it’s not an open standoff if Saakashvili is arrested and there is fighting on the street. I.e., the sides already moved on to violent actions against each other. What’s next? If Poroshenko has calculated correctly, then he should win.

But from my point of view in order to win it was necessary to arrest not only Saakashvili, but all who stand behind him. Now the organisers of the mutiny remain free, and can continue their affairs. They can find ten more Saakashvilis. Especially as Saakashvili can serve as a banner of a protest in prison and even if he will be expelled to Georgia.

In the current opposition either someone will win or the standoff will accrue and turn into civil war.”

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