As I stated yesterday, it was impossible to predict which way the crisis would head. Today we have the possibility of settlement to the crisis.
President Viktor Yanukovych and the opposition signed an Agreement on the Settlement of the Crisis in Ukraine.
- Restore the Constitution of 2004
- Constitutional reform, balancing the powers of the President, the government and parliament, will start immediately and be completed in September 2014.
- Presidential elections will be held as soon as the new Constitution is adopted but no later than December 2014.
- Investigation into recent acts of violence will be conducted under joint monitoring from the authorities, the opposition and the Council of Europe.
- The authorities will not impose a state of emergency. The authorities and the opposition will refrain from the use of violence. Illegal weapons should be handed over to the Ministry of Interior bodies within 24 hours of the special law.
- The Foreign Ministers of France, Germany, Poland and the Special Representative of the President of the Russian Federation call for an immediate end to all violence and confrontation.
Will this Truce Last?
The key issue today is whether this truce will last any longer than the last one did. While pondering that subject, please consider Ukraine leader, opposition sign deal to end crisis.
Ukraine’s leader and opposition on Friday signed a deal to end the splintered country’s worst crisis since independence after three days of carnage left nearly 100 protesters dead and the heart of Kiev resembling a war zone.
President Viktor Yanukovych’s dramatic decision to hold early elections and form a new unity government was met with caution by the tens of thousands gathered on central Kiev’s main square for a protest that began exactly three months earlier.
The deal was signed in the presidential palace’s Blue Hall in the presence of EU envoys by Yanukovych and and three top opposition leaders who included the charismatic boxer turned lamaker Vitali Klitschko.
The peace pact met the demands the opposition had laid down at the start of the protests: the balance of political power would shift back to parliament — as it had been before Yanukovych assumed the presidency in 2010 and took the nation of 46 million on a course away from the West and toward Russia.
It would also create an opposition cabinet with the authority to reverse Yanukovych’s decision in November to ditch an historic deal that would have put Ukraine on the path to eventual membership of the EU, which many Ukrainians see as their protector from centuries of Russian domination.
Life appeared to be returning to normal in much of Kiev as the city’s vital metro network resumed service after being shut down to keep protesters from reaching Independence Square on Tuesday night.
But many protesters told AFP that the deal represented too little and came much too late.
“These steps were what we needed but I think it is now too late after all the blood that has been spilt,” said 58-year-old Sergiy Yanchukov.
“It was a crime against humanity and Yanukovych should be sent to The Hague (home of the International Criminal Court).
I rather doubt people are going to hand over their weapons. Regardless, let’s hope the bloodshed and riots stop.
Mike “Mish” Shedlock