PACE to send 41 election observers to Ukraine


You will recall I wrote about Ukraine’s invitation to external bodies to send election observers for the forthcoming elections back in March. The Council of Europe/PACE has stated it will send 41 observers under the supervision of Andreas Gross of Switzerland.  Mr Gross has written two rather interesting papers over the past 4 years relating… [Continue Reading]

Bananas, Tanks, Ukraine and Sudan

What do bananas, tanks, Ukraine and Sudan have in common? Actually nothing, but I attempt to make a case that they should have something in common - binding international treaties. Anmesty International have just produced a report in which Ukraine is identified as a sinner for supplying at least 75 T72M1 (and many more T54/55′s)… [Continue Reading]

Are the words of the prophets written on the subway walls?

As is well known to all EU citizens (and some other nationalities), they do not need a Visa to enter Ukraine for up to 90 days in a 180 day period.  It has been this was since 2005/6 for most. As is well known to all Ukrainians, the reciprocal approach has not yet been delivered,… [Continue Reading]

Ukrainian officials should be treated in Ukrainian hospitals - Tomenko

When one considers the shear scale of reforms and improvements necessary for Ukraine to close the social, legal and democratic gaps with its neighbours, it is quite an awesome task for any leadership.  That said, with regards to democracy, if Ukraine treads water long enough there is a real possibility that its neighbours will regress… [Continue Reading]

United Opposition adds another party to its cause

Whether or not you agree with the changes to the electoral laws that passed through the RADA at the end of last year, you will recall that both the current ruling PoR party and the biggest opposition party, BYuT, voted for the changes.  As I wrote at the time, it was the death of the… [Continue Reading]

RADA holidays to be delayed?

Friday 6th July will have been a date circled in chunky red crayon by all the members of the RADA, be they majority or opposition, since the beginning of the parliamentary year, as it is the last working day before their summer holidays. The days to strike off prior to 6th July are becoming few… [Continue Reading]

Ex Environment Minister released from prison by Kyiv Court of Appeal


Slow down!  Don’t get too excited about a change of policy by the current Ukrainian government over ministers from the last one. It seems Heorhiy Flipchuk has had his 3 year prison sentence commuted to a 2 year suspended sentence having paid financial reparations for his alleged losses to the State budget. Justice or coercion?… [Continue Reading]

Ukraine - Social Media and Anti-Corruption

Whilst on Dnipropetrovsk 24 TV, a local channel, Prime Minister Azarov, a very frequent Facebook user, suggested that whilst he encourages anybody to inform authorities of corruption within their ranks, should they wish to do so, he encourages them to inform him personally via Facebook. This idea was then given a national broadcast via the… [Continue Reading]

US Dollar to Ukrainian Gryvnia Conversion Rate

Currency Conversions as of June 22, 2010 – the US Dollar is converting on the streets to approximately 8.06 UAH (Ukrainian Gryvnia). For comparison: April 21, 2012, One US Dollar - 8.00 UAH April 6, 2010: One US Dollar = 7.90 UAH July 7, 2009: One US Dollar = 7.70 UAH February 19, 2009: One… [Continue Reading]

TEDx Event - Odessa

No, I’m not joking! TEDx, for those thinkers amongst you who are prepared to entertain viewing the world through a different lens and contemplating how it could be, have brought some truly memorable presentations to us all: There are TEDx presentations by people I know such as Charles Crawford, part of whose empire I have… [Continue Reading]

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