Ukraine in Turmoil while Conflict Escalates in Eastern RegionExternal Relations 12 April 2016
Ukraine in Turmoil while Conflict Escalates in Eastern Region and Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk has announced his resignation.
The conflict in the Eastern Ukraine has once more escalated nearby Avdiivka, an industrial town North of Donetsk, where the Ukrainian army and pro-Russian separatists started fighting.
Last week, from Friday to Sunday, 8 Ukrainian soldiers were wounded by gunfire, said the Ukrainian command. A civilian also was killed on his land.
Frightening photos from the battlefield show the presence of heavy war equipment, such as tanks on the separatist side. Those devices should have been withdrawn by now.
International organizations call on both sides to respect the ceasefire
Special Representative of the Federal Government of Germany for the OSCE Chairmanship, Gernot Erler, has urged all sides to take steps in order to de-escalate the situation and to fully honour their commitments.
“A sustainable ceasefire is urgently needed,” said EU foreign policy Chief Federica Mogherini, “not least to ensure progress at last in implementing the political obligations from the Minsk agreements.”
The EU High Commissioner for Foreign policy also called on both side to refrain from involving monitors of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission (SMM) in armed incidents.
Putin seemed to have lost interest in the Eastern Ukraine
Some experts are now wondering whether Russia will take advantage of the new fighting to support the separatists. The issue did not seem to interest Vladimir Putin over the past few months.
Nevertheless this could change: after Russia’s surprising withdrawal from Syria, Putin has spare military forces. He could use them in the Eastern Ukraine. Still, it is unclear whether this is Putin’s real plan.
The situation in Ukraine is critical
Meanwhile, shaken by the results of the recent Referendum in The Netherlands on the EU-Ukraine Agreement, Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk has announced his resignation on Sunday.
For more information on the Dutch Referendum, read “Peace and Stability For Ukraine Defeated by Dutch Citizens Fears.”
Several high-profile reformers have left the government, claiming it was failing to tackle corruption. Accused of inaction and corruption, his party’s popularity has plummeted, as shown by opinion polls.
The violation of the ceasefire creates new troubles for Ukraine’s President, Petro Poroshenko, and a new government, potentially already under intense pressure to implement real reform, both from Ukraine’s European and American partners and the Ukrainian people.