Ukranian update

It was another quiet night in Ukraine with, thankfully, all the rumours of a crackdown by security forces not coming true. Neeka has a couple of posts on what happened overnight. She also points out, that amidst everything else going on, Dynamo Kiev played at home in the Champions League last night, and won 2-0. Victor Katolyk has continued to report through what’s been a quiet night.
BBC News reports that President Kuchma has offered talks to the opposition who will respond at around 10am Ukrainian time. The Kyiv Post, however, reports that Yulia Tymoshenko – who the BBC reports as saying Yuschenko will respond by 0am – has turned down the offer. I guess we have to wait and see on this one. The picture on their front page gives an idea of the size of the crowd.
Elsewhere, the Denver Post has reports from former US Congressman Bob Schaffer who “went to Ukraine to monitor an election but found himself watching a revolution.”
Brama and Maidan have continued to update overnight.
Following up on something Victor has mentioned, the Guardian reports that four newsreaders have walked out of Channel 1+1 in protest about censorship which is why that station hasn’t been showing any news – there’s no one there to report it! They also report (via the IFJ) that journalists at Inter and UT1 have walked out.
The BBC has a link to the Yanukovych campaign website but it appears to be down at the present time.
Tulip Girl lists the turnout at protests throught Ukraine.

Update: Europhobia starts a new post to cover today’s developments. Victor is now joined by friends to cover the latest events over at The Periscope. The official election result is expected to be announced at around 1400GMT (4pm Ukrainian time) – that looks like the key time to wait for today. There seem to be protests spiringing up all over the country right now.
There’s a new blog for the Voldmyr Campaign, it’s London-based and compiling information about what’s going on in Ukraine right now.
Javier Solana addressed the European Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee this morning and has warned of the possibility of violence. Following on from NATO last night, the Parliament has cummoned the Ukrainian Ambassador “to defend the conduct of the disputed presidential election in his homeland.”
The PORA campaign has an English-language website.

Update 2: The morning has continued with no major developments, though the crowds remaining in Kiev are still huge. The main currency appears to be rumours as people wait for the official announcement of the result at 4pm Ukraine time (2pm GMT, 3PM CET, 9am EST)
It’s not in English, but there appears to be a lot of information flowing through this Livejournal community. (By the way, Fistful is available as an LJ feed here)
BBC News reports that the European Commission has requested that the declaration of the result be declared delayed – (typo, not the Commission changing its mind). From what I understand, should Yanukovich be declared the winner then, he becomes President straightaway. Reports at The Periscope indicate that that’s when the crackdown by security forces will begin.
Another Kiev-based blog – Foreign Notes.
Reuters report the statement from the European Commission, including what sounds like quite a strong statement from Barroso:

“We have asked for the procedures and the results to be reviewed … and we are urging our Ukrainian partners to resist announcing final results before that review has taken place.” Emma Udwin, a spokeswoman for the EU’s executive Commission, told a daily news briefing.

New Commission chief Jose Manuel Barroso called for restraint in Ukraine and said there would be consequences for EU relations with Kiev “if there is not a serious, objective review of the election results”.

Le Sabot Post-Moderne is working for Maidan, and has a report on the latest developments. Maidan itself reports that government buildings in Kiev are being evacuated.

Update (by Tobias): Crisis Fallout: Le Figaro reports mounting EU-Russian tensions just one day before a scheduled summit in The Hague. While Ukraine was not originally on the summit’s agenda, the ongoing events are likely to change that.

According to the newspaper, the Russian government now accuses the EU that by asking for a recount (which it did not do as such as such, the Dutch presidency simply expressed “doubts” aobut the election) it was “encouraging the Ukrainian opposition to take violent and illegal steps”. EUPolitix.com cites President Putin, who allegedly said ?Ukraine is a great state with a mature democratic system. There is no need to teach it democracy” (much more reading in their )

6 thoughts on “Ukranian update

  1. People on the ground are reporting there are Russian troops mixed in with the Ukrainian palace guards. If true, sounds like they already are intervening.

  2. The Rooskies will try to instgate violence if and when they name their stooge the winner.

    The people must remain non-violent – yet…
    I wonder…does this then become another Tiennamen Sq?

  3. If the good people of Ukraine need help, their best bet is to call on the english speaking countries of the world. With very limited exception, such as Poland, the rest of the world either opposes democracy or are outright cowards, or in the case of France and Germany, both.

  4. I’m not fully up to speed on the internal demographics of the Ukraine, but wasn’t there a redrawing of the borders of Soviet republics that was done to diminish the ethnic concentration of the various regions? For instance, the ethnically Russian region of the Crimea was drawn to be included into the Unkraine. When the USSR crumbled, they just kept the republics as drawn under the Soviet era.

    I wonder how the election would have changed if regions like Crimea were returned to Russia.

    Feasible? A good idea in any case?

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