RUSSIALINK: “Russia hopes Ukraine’s administration is ‘negotiable’ after election” – Interfax
(Interfax – April 21, 2019)
Moscow is most hopeful that the winner in Ukraine’s presidential election will possess an ability to negotiate and a willingness to implement ceasefire commitments in Donbass, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has said.
Speaking in the lead-up to the second round of voting, Lavrov suggested Russia gave little weight to campaign statements made by either President Petro Poroshenko or challenger Volodymyr Zelensky. “There is a sense that the main thing for them is not to attract voters to any given constructive programme but to win. Everything is dedicated to precisely this,” Lavrov told the Defence Ministry-controlled Zvezda TV channel in an interview also published by the Interfax news agency.
“I would not now make any far-reaching final conclusions with respect to what politician V. Zelensky will be if he is elected president, which everyone is talking about as if it were a foregone conclusion,” Lavrov said. The minister said he is not “reading into” statements made by Zelensky’s team but would rather wait once the election is won “when one does not have to be involved in propagandist pre-electoral campaigns but in real deeds”.
“Then, when he takes the presidential office, we will understand the attitude of this person towards millions of his fellow compatriots who speak Russian, love the Russian language and culture, want to live on the basis of their own values, the values of the winners of the Great Patriotic War and not the values of glorifying the likes of Shukhevich, Bandera and Petluira.”
Asked hat he would like to see from the presidential administration in Ukraine following the election, Lavrov said it must be “negotiable” and show “respect, from either the new or old authorities, towards international law and international commitments of Ukraine”
[featured image is file photo from another occasion]