Interfax: Stability in Ukraine is impossible without heeding Russian-speaking people’s opinion – Pushkov

Alexei Pushkov file photo

STRASBOURG. April 7 (Interfax) – There will be no stability in Ukraine until it begins heeding the opinion of the Russian-speaking population, Alexei Pushkov, the head of the Russian delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) and the head of the State Duma committee on international affairs, said.

“The situation in eastern Ukraine shows that stability will not be achieved in Ukraine without heeding the wishes of the people who live in the eastern and southern regions of Ukraine, primarily, Russian-speaking people,” Pushkov told reporters on Monday, the day the spring session of PACE opened.

Pushkov said PACE is now beginning to understand that the situation in Ukraine is quite complex and “the current Kyiv administration has no control over the situation in the country.”

“A delegation of the PACE presidential committee visited Ukraine two weeks ago. They visited Kyiv, Lviv and Donetsk and became convinced that the problem of Russians in the eastern and southern regions of Ukraine really exists. It’s a real problem and the people are really seriously unhappy there. They came to the conclusion that the Kyiv administration does not fully control the situation and the situation when there are military units that do not report to anyone and are illegal is not characteristic of a country that claims to be democratic at all,” he said.

Pushkov said he expects that most speeches made during the PACE spring session will be anti-Russian, but said that he is confident that some deputies will say that the situation in Ukraine is very complex and the Crimea crisis is a consequence of the collapse of the Ukrainian administration and the coup in Ukraine, not its cause.