Political expert: Zelensky is a surprise for Russia - INTERVIEW

Political expert: Zelensky is a surprise for Russia - INTERVIEW
  • Clock-gray 10:47
  • calendar-gray 30 April 2019

The political consultant, head of the Institute for Public Policy and Consulting "INPOLIT" Sergei Bykov interviewed by APANews Agency.

-Starting with a simple question, why Ukrainians have selected Volodymyr Zelensky, a comedian with no political experience, as their next president, even during his campaign it has not been yet clear what policies he would pursue?

-Volodymyr Zelensky is the result of politicians' work. He is a completely anti-system politician. Systemic politicians' have disappointed nation. They disappointed society. Because of this, Zelensky became the President.

Here is a lot of questions to Zelensky. He cannot be a President who is silent. We can see one of the trends. Zelensky is the shortest way for Ukraine to become a parliamentary republic.

-Some of experts say that a democratically elected Zelensky is a hostage of Ukrainian public opinion, would be interesting to know your viewpoint.

-The main expectation is to imprison corrupt officials. And the entourage of Petro Poroshenko. Volodymyr Zelensky will be able to fulfill this expectation in only one case: he must appoint his Prosecutor General, the Head of the SSU, the Minister of Defense. For this he need to update the coalition. Need to negotiate with the parliament.

Zelensky must find a person who can gather a coalition. It can be Yulia Tymoshenko. She has authority. She has experience in forming coalitions. She knows what to do as a Prime-Minister. With Tymoshenko, Zelensky can be an effective president in the first six months.

-In near future can we expect a new tendency in Ukraine's foreign policy, in particular regarding Russia and EU?

-Zelensky is a surprise for Russia. Russia's recent actions indicate that Putin was not interested in the Zelensky presidency.

-There have been fears that with Zelensky at helm, Ukraine’s foreign policy would radically change in favor of Russia, what is your view on this? Will Zelensky try to find common ground with Russia?

-Ukraine has chosen a foreign vector. This is a vector to the West. But with Russia will need to rebuild relationships. But only after the end of the war.

-Volodymyr Zelensky has said that the cessation of shelling along the so-called line of demarcation would be one of his main objectives as Ukraine’s head of state. What will Zelensky have to sacrifice to keep the shelling from resuming and to avoid being seen by a segment of Ukrainians as a representative of the “war party”?

-Zelensky needs a strong MFA and the Department for External Relations of the Presidential Administration. Then it will be possible to continue negotiations in the Norman format. Or look for new negotiation formats.

Nowadays Russia is informally pushing Zelensky to appoint to the Government politicians which close to the Kremlin. Russia is interested in Yuriy Boyko becoming Minister of Energy. It may be the point of negotiations between Putin and Zelensky.

-Zelensky told people in fellow post-Soviet countries that "everything is possible." So, might this development also have an influence on other post-Soviet lands?

-Zelensky's phenomenon is possible in countries where people feel injustice. Where State does not hear the people. It concerns not only post-Soviet countries.

Zumrud Pashkin

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