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Dr. Lyubov Zhyznomirska, Department of Political Science, Saint Mary’s University Halifax, 13 February 2014.

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Presentation on theme: "Dr. Lyubov Zhyznomirska, Department of Political Science, Saint Mary’s University Halifax, 13 February 2014."— Presentation transcript:

1 Dr. Lyubov Zhyznomirska, Department of Political Science, Saint Mary’s University Halifax, 13 February 2014

2  An EU-Ukraine-Russia “triangle:” a political and geopolitical dimension  Key junctures in the EU-Ukraine relations  #Euromaidan in Ukraine ◦ The potential impact of the current protests on the EU-Russia relations and on the EU-Ukraine relations

3  No institutionally formalized “triangle” at the international level ◦ EU/Ukraine, EU/Russia, Russia/Ukraine  Ukraine – between two competing projects of regional integration – the European one by the EU and the Eurasian one by Russia, influenced by both: ◦ 1) political, economic, social, and cultural relations; ◦ 2) asymmetric relations; ◦ 3) facing a so called “civilizational” choice – European democracy versus Eurasian authoritarianism – a question of attraction and choice  Choice by political and economic elites or people? ◦ Russia: Ukraine an essential object in geopolitical plans in Eurasia, Ukraine’s European choice – potential threat to their political regime ◦ The EU: Ukraine’s Eurasian choice is unfortunate but not a problem; cordon sanitaire on Ukraine’s western border, rather than the eastern one

4  Russia – the EU’s “strategic partner”? ◦ Views the EU as a competitor in the territory of the shared neighbourhood;  The EU’s European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) and its Eastern Partnership initiative as a “threat” to Russia’s “sphere of geopolitical interest” ◦ European and transatlantic political, economic, and security arrangements as threatening Russia’s domestic political regime, its international stature  Russia’s reaction to the potential signature of the Association Agreement (AA), subsequent U-turn by Ukrainian President V. Yanukovych and Euromaidan protests may: ◦ change the EU’s stance in the shared neighbourhood and its relations with Russia; ◦ force the Ukrainian elites to make a “civilizational” choice demanded by the majority of people, and; ◦ provide an opportunity for Ukraine to develop healthier relations with Russia


6 ◦ Sept. 1997, the first EU-Ukraine summit: Leonid Kuchma confirmed Ukraine’s European choice in line with the PCA. ◦ June 1998, EU-Ukraine Co-operation Council: Ukrainian PM Valeriy Pustovojtenko, spoke about Ukraine's desire to receive an association status ◦ July 2002 - Kuchma announced key plans:  signing an association agreement with the EU by 2003-2004, negotiating a free-trade area, fulfilling all the requirements for the AA to enter into force by 2004-2007, creating a customs union with the EU by 2005-2007 and meeting all EU membership requirements by 2007-2011

7  1994 PCA – post-soviet space, not part of CEECs – no EU membership prospect ◦ “close relations building upon the existing historical links;” the “common values;” and the recognition and support to “the wish of Ukraine to establish close cooperation with European institutions”  1999 Common Strategy – UA “strategic partner” ◦ Acknowledged “Ukraine’s European aspirations and welcome[d] Ukraine’s pro-European choice”  2004 – Ukraine included in the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP)  2008 – the ENP receives an eastern dimension – the launch of Eastern Partnership

8  The conversation of the deaf regarding EU membership prospect for Ukraine and regarding the sequence of the “prospect-reform” agenda ◦ The EU:  a lack of strategic vision, implicit support to the status quo on Russia’s influence in Eastern Europe and on Ukraine in particular (Balfour, 2012),  positioning of Ukraine outside of the circle of European countries with a prospect of accession ◦ Ukraine:  inconsistent with its political, economic and social reforms;  dual-track foreign policy, with political situation affecting changes in strategic choice for cooperation  high expectations unmet by the EU policy proposals, disappointed but left with no choice but to accept what the EU has to offer

9 1999–2009 - no change – “European aspirations” and “pro-European choice” rhetoric

10  Political association and deep economic integration  Beyond the European aspiration and pro-European choice? ◦ “The close historical relationship and progressively closer links between the Parties as well as their desire to strengthen and widen relations in an ambitious and innovative way,” ◦ the commitment “to a close and lasting relationship that is based on common values” and to “the principles of a free market economy, which would facilitate the participation of Ukraine in European policies,” ◦ Ukraine “as a European country shares a common history and common values with the Member States of the European Union (EU) and is committed to promoting those values,” ◦ “The importance Ukraine attaches to its European identity,” ◦ “European choice” = commitment to building “deep and sustainable democracy and a market economy.” ◦ The common values (i.e., democracy, respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms, and rule of law)




14  50% support EuroMaidan, 42% don’t support (20-24 December 2014 survey by DIF). Support in: ◦ Western Ukraine – 80% and 7%, ◦ Central Ukraine – 63% and 28%, ◦ Southern Ukraine – 20% and 71%, and ◦ Eastern Ukraine – 30% and 65%. ◦ Participated in the protest activities: Western – 26%, Central – 15% (Kyiv – 39%), South – 5.5%, and East – 3%  Support antiMaidan – 27%, against it – 57%.  3 surveys conducted by the fund "Democratic Initiatives of Ilka Kucheriv" and the Kyiv International Institute of Sociology, sponsored by the Renaissance foundation ◦ 7-8 December 2013 during the rally (1037 respondents) ◦ 20 December 2013 (515 resp.) ◦ 3 February 2014 (502 resp.)  From maidan-camp to maidan-sich: changes in residents of maidan: ◦ 88% men, 12% women; the average age – 37 years; high education – 43% (higher than the national average), incomplete secondary education – 4%; increased number of entrepreneurs – from 12% to 17%; students – 6% (down from 10%); dominated by people outside of Kyiv – 88% (55% from the west, 24% from centre, and 21% from east and south)

15  The Russian factor ◦ Potential presence on the ground in Ukraine ◦ The package of assistance “without conditions” ◦ Immense anti-maidan information campaign domestically and internationally ◦ Mobilization of Russophiles within Ukraine and scenarios of federalization

16  EU-Ukraine relations: ◦ First stage – fully supported the aspirations of the Ukrainian people, calls for restraints ◦ Mediation of the opposing sides by Fule and Ashton ◦ Calls for the official opposition to distance itself from the “radicals” ◦ The AA deal still on the table ◦ EU Commission President Barroso: EU will not compete with Russia by offering a better financial package ◦ Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe resolution, 30 Jan 2014 ◦ European parliament resolution, 5 February 2014 ◦ EU Foreign Affairs Council statement, 10 February 2014  EU-Russia relations

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