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Ukraine election: the numbers game

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Ukraine election: the numbers game

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Ukrainian President Victor Yanukovich’s ruling party looked set to secure a parliamentary majority on Monday, despite international monitors criticising the result.

The head of the European Parliament observers delegation Pawel Robert Kowal said: “Ukraine, compared to other countries in the region, I mean countries which were part of the Soviet Union, maintains some democratic standards. Voters can indeed choose, and want to do so. On the other hand, things have regressed compared to 2010 or the 2007 elections.”

While other international monitors also described the poll as a ‘‘backward step’‘ for democracy, supporters of Ukraine’s ruling Party of the Regions, didn’t seem to mind. They celebrated their anticipated win way into Sunday night.

Across the political divide, Ukraine’s main opposition party, Fatherland, also alleged widespread voting irregularities, despite their stronger showing than in previous elections.

For more insight on the controversial parliamentary result in Ukraine, euronews spoke with political analyst Olexiy Haran.

Sergio Cantone, euronews:
Will the party of Regions be able to form a new government now?

Olexiy Haran, Kyiv Mohyla School of Political Analysis:
In order to have simple majority I think so. This is basically the understanding of the analysts.

euronews:
Plus the communists in this case?

Olexiy Haran:
Plus the communists, formally communists may not support the party of regions, but in reality they will support party of regions.

euronews:
And basically how long according to you could take such a negotiation? Because it looks a rather complicated negotiation in order to win over the resistances…

Olexiy Haran:
Yes, but actually this not a negotiation, you know, but again these are negotiations combined with the pressure. I believe it will start immediately after the election, but the final result we will see when the parliament will be convened, which will happen in December. So I believe that the future government, if president Yanukovich will be able to have this simple majority, it wouldn’t be that easy to control the parliament as the whole. I would say the parliament will be more flexible, there will be more debate, more different trends.

euronews:
What about Klitchko, what is his role now in the political arena?

Olexiy Haran:
Well, Klitchko stated very clearly that his party is not going to participate in coalition with the party of regions, so basically he positioned him-self to be the opposition party, but we will see what will be the real position, because again, in his party there are different people and some people are very well known for this patriotic and democratic position while there are some new people whom we actually do not know and, as I said there would be a huge pressure on all this deputies. So teh question is whether these MPs from Klitchko party would be able to resist.

euronews:
Is Svoboda party the key, the solution for the opposition in this election? because it is rather contradictory, on one hand Svoboda has got a lot of votes, that is good score for the opposition, on the other hand it is a party that is waking up some concerns abroad…

Olexiy Haran:
Svoboda is a very complicated phenomenon and there are radicals within Svoboda, there are people more pragmatic with whom it is possible to talk, Ukraine is far from Russian or Belorussian model, there is much more pluralism, the presence of opposition in the parliament, different kinds of opposition is beneficial for the country.

euronews:
Even if there have been some concerns about the xenophobia and also anti-semitism of Svoboda, isn’t it?

Olexiy Haran:
The general rule of comparative politics is when the party is entering the parliament it starts to make its position more flexible, because it needs to participate in different parliamentary agreements.

euronews:
The EU said that this elections are a test in order to open the doors to Ukraine or to shut them. What do you think?

Olexiy Haran:
This is a question to the EU it is not to me, or to Ukrainians, basically I would say these elections are a step back, this is clear, but as I said, nevertheless the situation in Ukraine is much more open, much more pluralistic and diverse then in Russia, so basically it means for the EU that there will be no clear cut solution to say yes or no. I believe that the EU would be developing its nuanced position towards what is happening in Ukraine.