Andriy Kluyev, one of PoR's leading deputies, was interviewed by the 'Delo' business daily in an article entitled: 'Link-man between Yanukovych and Tymoshenko'.
Here are portions:
Q. Part of Party of Regions became initiator of a coalition with BYuT on September 2nd. How did this arise and why did nothing come of it?
[Note: On that day PoR and BYuT voted together in parliament to reduce the president's powers, infuriating the president Yushchenko. His NUNS bloc broke away from their coalition partners BYuT, and gave Yushchenko a pretext to call snap elections.]
A. Unfortunately, for quite a long time PoR and BYuT were rivals. An enormous mass of problems has sprung up which must be untangled. Naturally, it is physically impossible in a short time to solve these questions. Look, there are a number of questions, on which we reached consensus. We must morally realize that we should trust each other. This is a matter of time. I consider that if after elections, or without them, a coalition between BYuT and PoR is formed on these or other conditions, our country will turn from being a politically unstable, to a stable and viable state.
[Note: Tymoshenko several times recently declared that BYuT would not enter any parliamentary coalition with PoR because they promised not to do so during last year's snap election campaign.]
Q. And on what conditions can such a coalition take place?
A. On the conditions of understanding that we are obliged, at the end of the day, to form an effective authority, which would work in a stable fashion for at least 4-5 years. Surely, besides short-term anti-crisis measures, it is vital we should accept a long-range development program for Ukraine. We need, just as the air we breathe, a packet of reforms on the elimination of structural disproportions in the economy, on the creation of new high gross value addition branches of industry, on improvements in the conditions of conducting business, on improvements in the quality of the life of citizens. [Any] new coalition must be built on the understanding that Ukraine can no longer lose time on conflicts...
Q. Who was the initiator of negotiations [between PoR and BYuT] then?
A. Both sides. Nothing ever happens without mutual wishes. There was mutual understanding of the fact that we should change something in the country. However, this did not lead to any coalition. On one hand, the fact that Yulia Tymoshenko's trip to Moscow went well and she was cordially received there has been actively discussed. They say that Viktor Medvedchuk was involved. On the other hand, Viktor Yanukovych declares, that is possible the remnants of SDPU(o) may join up with Party of Regions. What then is the political role of Viktor Medvedchuk?
Viktor Vladimirovich [Medvedchuk] is my friend. I consider that if he returns to the active politics in Ukraine - the state will only win. He is a competent specialist, dynamic… If he enters PoR's lists of candidate deputy (if elections do after all take place) - this will be very good."
As I mentioned in my previous blog, Kluyev considers any snap parliamentary election will probably be postponed until February next year. He says that early elections was not PoR's idea and they are not a panacea to cure Ukraine's ills.
p.s. 'Ukrainska Pravda' gives some details of VR deputies who failed to support a bill to raise finances for the early elections. The motion was not carried because only 222 votes could be raised, 4 short of the minimum required. Over 40 deputies from NUNS failed to support the motion, and included those from Ihor Kolomoysky's group. Oddly, Ivan Plyusch and Petro Yushchenko's cards did not register a vote either. Although most PoR deputies supported the motion, several big-names amongst their ranks, for various reasons, did not.
PoR seem to have gone 'lukewarm' on the elections. Leading PoR spokesperson Hanna Herman says a PoR conference scheduled for today will not take place.
"We will not hold the meeting because a date for the elections has not been determined and it is not clear at all if there will be elections or not."