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Where there is no law, but every man does what is right in his own eyes, there is the least of real liberty
Henry M. Robert

On the EU’s “sin of inaction”

Pawel KOWAL: “It is too late now for soft diplomacy”
20 February, 2014 - 12:01
Photo by Artem SLIPACHUK, The Day

Events in Kyiv, which have seen over 25 deaths and hundreds of injured as of the morning of February 19, have caused a huge reaction in the world. Almost all European leaders, politicians, and experts decry the new outbreak of violence in the capital of Ukraine. Many experts blame the EU and the US for their passivity and inability of the West to persuade Ukrainian authorities to work with opposition towards a compromise way out of the three-month-long crisis. The Day asked European experts to comment on the situation and outline possible ways out of this situation.

Pawel KOWAL, head of the European Parliament Delegation to the EU-Ukraine Parliamentary Cooperation Committee:

“The EU has committed a sin of inaction by misusing European diplomacy over the past few weeks. They just talked about plans and expressed outrage. It is too late now for soft diplomacy. If the EU decides to resort to sanctions, they should go hand in hand with a specific plan to support Ukraine’s economy and society. Once again, I appeal to EU leaders to speed up the abolition of visas for citizens of Ukraine.

“We need an international commission of observers created as soon as possible, to identify those guilty of firing into the crowd. However, the key task is to stop the violence and to ensure the EU’s assistance to the victims.

“I proposed to convene an extraordinary joint meeting of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the European Parliament and of the Conference of Presidents. I believe that the situation in Ukraine requires cooperation and coordination between various policy options, while the EU and its member states should take concrete measures instead of making yet another statement.”

By Mykola SIRUK, The Day