Hanne Severinsen: Ukrainian government could use EP mission to justify repression

10:05, 18 April 2013
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Former head of the Monitoring Committee of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe Hanne Severinsen believes the EP mission consisting of Pat Cox and Aleksander Kwasniewski should take a less diplomatic approach to negotiations with Ukrainian government authorities, according to the official web site of Yulia Tymoshenko.

"But if they continue the mission, it would be better if they give up the very diplomatic way they act, speaking up and give room for political considerations, helping the international community to evaluate the selective justice in Ukraine and how to react up to the Vilnius Summit. Otherwise they run the risk to be used as a cover for the Yanukovych-regime, who only gives promises after promises they don’t intend to fulfill," Hanne Severinsen told Tyzhden.

She believes the EP’s mission was limited by its "closed door" policy. "The lack of public comments from their findings, has unfortunately given the Ukrainian authorities too much room for explaining their mission only from their side," she added.

Hanne Severinsen believes the mission did have an impact on improving conditions for the political prisoners in Ukraine, especially the pardon of former Interior Minister Yuriy Lutsenko and former Environment Minister Heorhiy Filipchuk. "In that sense it has seemingly being a useful tool allowing mechanism for direct negotiation with the Yanukovych regime which would not be possible for an EU official. Thereby act behind the scene," the European politician added.

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