Foreign Policy Research Institute

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Foreign Policy Research Institute

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Analysis of foreign politicy programs of parties

According to various sociological surveys conducted in Ukraine in recent years, the chances of overcoming the 5 percent barrier in early parliamentary elections on July, 21 have parties "Servant of the People", "Opposition platform - For life", "European solidarity", " All-Ukrainian Union "Fatherland" and "Voice". At the same time, according to polls, the "Servant of the People" of President Volodymyr Zelensky can get more than 45 percent of the votes, the "Opposition platform - For life" more than 10 percent and the remaining political forces more than five percent of the votes.

At first glance, the "Servant of the People" really manages to keep the promise to bring new people to the Parliament. At least none of the People's Deputy of the current parliamentary cadence is represented in the electoral list of the political forces. The election program of the "Servant of the People" looks quite mottled.[1]

Security policy of the party will be focused on the following tasks: "We will provide legislative support for the President's initiatives aimed at restoring the territorial integrity and state sovereignty of Ukraine; set defense spending at a rate of not less than 5% of GDP; restore the reform of the Armed Forces by NATO standards; stop the outflow of valuable personnel from the army, introduce a system of training and retraining of soldiers and officers; introduce stiff penalties for corruption and theft in the Armed Forces and the Ministry of Defense.

The foreign policy of the party includes the following priorities: «We will adopt the laws necessary to implement the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement and expand cooperation with the EU and NATO; support the President's initiatives to reset relations with Ukraine's closest neighbors in the West; launch a program of "commercial diplomacy" to promote Ukrainian goods on global markets.[2]

Electoral list of "Opposition platform - For life", instead, it is full of surnames, well-known to Ukrainians since the time of "Party of Regions". It is headed by the co-chairs of the party – the former regional Yuriy Boyko and Vadim Rabinovich, who in 2014 was elected to the Verkhovna Rada on the list of "Oppositional platform". The former head of the Presidential Administration of Viktor Yanukovych, Serhiy Lovochkin, looks exactly in its place in the top ten. Attention is paid to the third place of Viktor Medvedchuk - the godfather of Russian President, Vladimir Putin, and the tenth place in the list of his close associate and owner of channels "NewsOne", "112" and more recently "ZIK", Taras Kozak.

There is no program on the website of the political force, but in the section "Initiatives" it is noted that one of the main tasks are "restoration of peace in the country", the full implementation of the Minsk Agreements, cessation of hostilities in Donbass and consolidation of Ukraine's non-aligned status in foreign policy. Also, at the party congress Medvedchuk said that Kyiv should radically revise the terms of the Free Trade Agreement with the EU and the terms of Ukraine's participation in the World Trade Organization. Оf course, the role of Russia in the war in Donbass and the annexation of the Crimea in the documents and speeches of the members of the "Opposition platform - For life" is not mentioned at all.

List of the party project of former President Petro Poroshenko consists of People's Deputies or officials only half. Except him, there are not only his colleagues from "Petro Poroshenko Bloc", but also representatives of "People's Front", among which, for example, the speaker of the Verkhovna Rada, Andriy Parubiy. However, the list also has new faces.

The abbreviation of the name of the party "European Solidarity" perfectly illustrates its main program points - ensuring the further movement of Ukraine in the EU and NATO. Among the main tasks that Poroshenko announced at the congress of political forces are the preservation in force of the relevant provisions of the Constitution, obtaining a Membership Action Plan for NATO no later than 2023 and the achievement of the criteria necessary for accession to the EU in the same period. "We are going to prevent the revenge of pro-Russian forces", the former President said during the party congress. However, how exactly "European Solidarity" will be able to do it, being, as its leader said, in opposition, Poroshenko did not specify.

Yulia Tymoshenko decided not to experiment and have relied on trusted colleagues, including the Deputy Chairman of the faction "Fatherland" in the Parliament, Serhiy Sobolev, one of the leaders of the election campaign of Tymoshenko, Oleksandr Abdullin, her lawyer in the "gas affair" in 2011, Serhiy Vlasenko and the heads of regional organizations of "Fatherland". Among Tymoshenko's associates in the list attention is paid to the non-faction People's Deputy and businessman, Serhiy Taruta and the former head of the Security Service of Ukraine, Valentyn Nalyvaichenko.

Tymoshenko does not hide her plans in the Parliament - she is not going to go into opposition and calls for the creation of an "action coalition" after the elections, based on her "New course", developed before the presidential elections.[3] It says: "We will effectively implement the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement. Our future is in the EU. We will work consistently to provide Ukraine with a Membership Action Plan for NATO. Our security is in NATO. We consider the restoration of Ukraine's territorial integrity and sovereignty to be a top priority. The path to peace must begin with Russia's unconditional release of all prisoners of conscience, captives and hostages. In addition to the Minsk process and the Normandy format, we propose to start negotiations on the Budapest+ formula, involving both the US and the UK in the settlement process. We insist on considering the issues of the occupied Donbass and the annexed Crimea in a single package. We will continue active international activities within the framework of the Council of Europe, OSCE and the European People's Party to establish peace and return Ukrainian territories.»[4]

The list of "Voice" of singer Svyatoslav Vakarchuk, on the one hand, is difficult to call unambiguously composed of "new faces", because it contains many former officials and government advisers. However, all of them, as well as the former Deputy Minister of Economic Development, Yulia Klymenko or the Deputy Minister of Health, Olga Stefanyshyna have among experts positive reputation of the people adjusted on reforms and, actually, originate from the expert environment or business. Activists, innovative entrepreneurs and human rights activists are also widely represented in the list.

Like "European Solidarity", the party of Vakarchuk also focuses on the Euro-Atlantic integration of Ukraine and the preservation of its territorial integrity. The "Voice", in addition, promises to provide "a new political culture and inclusive democracy".The text of the party's program, which is contained only on two pages, consists mainly of general phrases that outline the general philosophy of the new political force, but do not contain specific steps or measures.[5]

According to recent sociological surveys, on June 30, 2019, two parties are making their way to the unconditional leaders of the parliamentary elections, which is the"Servant of the People" (45,2%) and the "Opposition platform - For life" (12%). Thus, despite the fact that the parties that have overcome the barrier of 5% declared loyalty to the current foreign policy of Ukraine, they will still compete with the "Opposition platform - For life", which will require a revenge of pro-Russian forces. Therefore, Ukraine should in no way allow a change in the path we have chosen. European and Euro-Atlantic integration must continue. Accordingly, there should be the victory of the pro-European forces in the upcoming parliamentary elections.




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