Ukraine President and Opponents Sign Deal in Bid to End Violence

Early elections and other concessions are part of an internationally-brokered deal to end battles between police and protesters in Kiev

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Louisa Gouliamaki / AFP / Getty Images

Protesters clash with police after gaining new positions near the Independence square in Kiev, Ukraine on February 20, 2014.

Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych and opposition leaders signed a deal Friday that will bring early elections and a new coalition government, an internationally-brokered agreement intended to end the fighting between police and protesters that has left about 75 dead and scores wounded in Kiev this week.

Yanukovych’s office announced that the centreal government and the opposition reached the deal after negotiations with European Union diplomats. The deal includes early elections and a promise by the president to form a coalition government. Yanukovych said in a statement on his website that he would begin the process for early elections, but he did not give a date, the Associated Press reports. He also promised constitutional reforms that would limit the power of the presidency, which has been a key demand for Kiev’s protesters. Ukraine’s parliament voted Friday in favor of amnesty for people who were detained during the protests, Reuters reports, and the parliament also voted to release the prominent jailed opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko.

Foreign ministers from Germany, France and Poland sought a deal after two days of clashes between protesters and police around Kiev’s Independence Square left about 75 dead. Some of the fiercest fighting in the past few days left the bodies of twenty people scattered on the ground not far from where Yanukovych was meeting with the E.U. diplomats, Reuters reports.

The United States, which had been considering sanctions of its own, welcomes the easing of tensions.

“We support the efforts of all those who negotiated this agreement, commend the courageous opposition leaders who recognized the need for compromise, and offer the support of the United States in its implementation,” White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said in a statement. “Now, the focus must be on concrete action to implement this agreement, which we will be monitoring closely.”

Ukraine has been at the center of a geopolitical struggle between Russia and the E.U. for the former Soviet republic’s political and economic ties. Protests began late last year after Yanukovych rejected a trade pact with the E.U. in favor of closer ties to Russia. Russian President Vladimir Putin sees Ukraine as the key to a potential Eurasian union with Moscow at the center, but many in the country want closer ties with Europe.

While the international deal is a potential breakthrough that could end the violence in Kiev, it may not be enough to satisfy some protesters, and there were reports of shots still ringing out in Kiev early on Friday. “This is just another piece of paper,” Anton Solovyov, a 28-year-old IT worker protesting in Independence Square, told Reuters. “We will not leave the barricades until Yanukovich steps down. That’s all people want.”

21 comments
AlanMacDonald
AlanMacDonald

I would highly recommend Professor Stephen Cohen's comments and analysis during his excellent interview with Amy and Juan yesterday on "Democracy Now", which in part states:

"Well, here again, the American political media establishment, including the right and the left and the center—because they’re all complicit in this nonsense—focused on the too sensational, they thought, aspect of that leaked conversation. She said, "F— the European Union," and everybody said, "Oh, my god! She said the word." The other thing was, who leaked it? "Oh, it was the Russians. Those dirty Russians leaked this conversation." But the significance is what you just played. What are they doing? The highest-ranking State Department official, who presumably represents the Obama administration, and the American ambassador in Kiev are, to put it in blunt terms, plotting a coup d’état against the elected president of Ukraine."

[FULL TRANSCRIPT available at http://www.democracynow.org/20...

His superb insight and analysis into what the US (and its Disguised Global Empire/ DGE strategy) is doing to deceitfully foment a coup d’état, using both soft and hard powers (per Thomas Barnett's "The Pentagon's New Map") is precisely spot-on IMHO.

IMHO, what's being enflamed under the guise of a Bushian/Obamian (neo-con/neo-liberal 'con-job') is just the latest of the US HQed DGE's action plan throughout the Middle-East and Central Asia in any and all GAP countries to attempt to pull this entire, and so-called, "Crescent of Instability" --- 5000 mile swath form Mauritania to the very boarders of Russian and China --- into the sway of the 'Old Core' (read DGE) sphere of disguised imperial control, and cut out any possible 'New Core' (BRICS) potential for an alternative, less imperialist, world view.

Only Americans can non-violently and effectively confront the DGE, since any protestors in foreign territories are subject (and 'subjects') to receiving the 'tip of the Empire's spear in their face' --- whereas brave efforts by Americans (who still have to be treated somewhat as 'citizens' by the DGE posing as the USG can accomplish much with the correct non-violent strategy, carefully escalating from the original Occupy strategy to an "Occupy the Empire" Rel 2.0 strategy based on what can now be proven by Snowden's (and others) exposures that the US is truly acting EXACTLY like a Global Empire.

If Americans in the homeland of the DGE don't soon bravely and non-violently take the initiative here 'at home' of more broadly recognizing, exposing, uncloaking, 'calling-out', and confronting this Disguised Global Empire only 'posing' as our country, then millions of citizens in countries/territories the world over will continue to be hammered by the DGE (directly or indirectly) as in Egypt, Yemen, Libya, Syria, and now Ukraine 'abroad'.

Or as Hannah Arendt warned from he painful experience with the Nazi Empire, and her study after WWII leading
universities of all empires:

"Empire abroad entails tyranny at home" H. Arndt

 ---- and we certainly are seeing the more to more tyranny 'at home' already.

Best luck and love to the fast expanding ‘Occupy the Empire’ educational and non-violent revolutionary movement against this deceitful and Disguised Global EMPIRE, which can’t yet be easily identified as wearing Red Coats, Red Stars, nor funny looking Nazi helmets.

Liberty, democracy, justice, and equality
Over
Violent (‘Vichy’ disguised)
Empire,

Alan MacDonald
Sanford, Maine

We don’t merely have a “Big Money”/Citizens United problem, or a domestic tyranny and NSA SPYING problem, or a gun/fear problem, or an MIC problem, or an ‘Austerity’ problem, or an EXPANDING WARS problem, or a ‘drone assassinations’ problem, or a vast income & wealth inequality problem, or a Wall Street ‘looting’ problem, or a Global Warming and environmental death-spiral problem, or the world’s largest political prisoner problem, or a crappy un-healthy insurance problem, or, or, or …ad nauseam — but what we REALLY have is a hidden VEMPIRE cancerous
tumor of GLOBAL EMPIRE which is the prime CAUSE of all these underlying, related, and ‘symptom problems'

Mother_Russia
Mother_Russia

Hey Liberate Texas, Are you really comparing the situation in Kyiv to the situation in Texas? Really? How can you possible equate a desire to remove a totally and completely corrupt regime like Yanukovich to the democratic process that happens in the United States. If you are angry at Obama, then vote someone else in next time. If you recall, you had a chance for a Texan to fix things -- he didn't do so well. In fact, Obama has dramatically albeit exceedingly slowly turned around the entire economy and outlook in America. By the way, if the United States and its military ever abandoned Texas, as you seem to wish, the Mexican cartels would most likely move in and take it over. You think a bunch of farmers with semi-automatics could withstand the Cartels? Think again.

LIberateTEXAS
LIberateTEXAS

The day will come when TEXAS will respond as Kiev has. Not backing down till get what we want, Independence. A country that dyfies God is no long our country. Americans can only blame themselves for such foolishhness. So Kiev is our source of hope and commitment will confirm that. 

jalangaya
jalangaya

No "deals" should be negotiated with terrorists, arsonists, cop-killers & CIA stooges. Big Vlad Putin can put the lid on the Ukrainian pot after Russia is done collecting gold at Sochi & Cossacks chase the last lurking American reporters away from the public toilets.

zenc64
zenc64

The Gangster Bandit Regime steals basically 25% of all state revenues. State assets sold for pennies on the dollar to the Gangster Family. Dentist son becomes billionaire in 3 years. Does anyone see a trend here?   

Galen
Galen

@LIberateTEXAS  


and that day cannot come soon enough!!


the worst state in the union, give it back to the Mexicans, they are much better people and have brains!!

Sibir_Russia
Sibir_Russia

@LIberateTEXAS  

Residents of seven U.S. States have collected the necessary number of signatures for secession from the United States.
 
 25 thousand signatures have overcome Texas Louisiana, Florida, North Carolina, Alabama, Georgia and Tennessee. In all these States, with the exception of Florida, the majority of the population voted in the election for MITT Romney.
 
Petition with a demand to secede from the United States filed a citizens 40 States.
 
The authors of the petition referred to the Declaration of independence of the USA, in which the founding fathers of the state proclaim: "If any form of government becomes destructive... the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to Institute new government."
 
The petition of Texas reads as follows:
"We petition the Оbama administration to: Peacefully grant the State of Texas to withdraw from the United States of America and create its own NEW government. The US continues to suffer economic difficulties stemming from the federal government's neglect to reform domestic and foreign spending. The citizens of the US suffer from blatant abuses of their rights such as the NDAA, the TSA, etc. Given that the state of Texas maintains a balanced budget and is the 15th largest economy in the world, it is practically feasible for Texas to withdraw from the union, and to do so would protect it's citizens' standard of living and re-secure their rights and liberties in accordance with the original ideas and beliefs of our founding fathers which are no longer being reflected by the federal government. Created: Nov 09, 2012"
 
The length of most of submitted petitions - only a few lines. So, the petition of residents of the state of Tennessee says: "Peacefully grant the State of Tennessee to withdraw from the United States of America and create its own NEW government."
 
American experts say that the chances that the White house will give any of the States of the good of the output of the composition of the country, practically equal to zero. In the last 11 States withdrew from the Union in 1860 and 1861 after the election of President Abraham Lincoln, after which began a bloody Civil war.
 

Sibir_Russia
Sibir_Russia

@ViableOp  

Ukraine, I want to notice, there is no such a huge state debt, as in the US. You think this is justice? I think that this is not the fault of Ukraine, and the need to change the economic model in the world, which gives the backward countries incentives for self-development, but not degradation. I also believe that the BRICS countries should move away from the dollar and create a development Bank, which will be similar to the IMF, to, among other things, to issue loans to poor countries for development, not further degradation. The only way to lead the world economy out of a deep crisis.

 

Sibir_Russia
Sibir_Russia

@ViableOp  


USA printing in large quantities, not secured dollars.
Russia placed a portion of its dollar surplus from the reserves in Ukrainian securities, instead placed them in the "valuable" in securities of the USA. The first tranche, according to my knowledge, had to go on payment of pensions, allowances and salaries to state employees. In addition, Russia has lowered Ukraine gas prices by 30%, Ukraine avoids default, but even now in this Republic no means to repay the debt to " Gazprom " for gas.
Where do you think Ukraine is the money? Do you think that Russia should provide Ukraine with gas for free? Offer me, working project, how to get Ukraine out of the crisis? Barroso said that the money from the EU to help Ukraine no. EU membership also no promises, and even if they promised it does not give guarantees - Turkey is already 20 years of age take, does not take can.
Ukraine faces default. USA allocate money only on the revolution. Take a loan from the IMF is not a solution. They should repay the debts to Gazprom, and payment of pensions and a whole bunch of conditions in exchange for the credit, which still need to give a later with %
 

StephenSwain
StephenSwain

@Sibir_Russia @LIberateTEXAS  This is simply nonsense, foisted on gullible people by other gullible people.  Secession is not, repeat N O T going to happen.  That was settled 150 years ago.  The future is not to be found in the past.  It is to be found in the now.

Mother_Russia
Mother_Russia

@Sibir_Russia @LIberateTEXAS-- Wow, 25 thousand signatures. Really? That must've taken a massive undertaking to garner support from a group that equates to the size of one medium sized southern town. 

By your numbers, you have been able to garner support from 0.030564% of the population from the above-mentioned US States. (Total pop. of all 7 states mentioned is 81,796,450 for your info). Shesh, you'll have to do a little bit better that than to convince the USA to consider seceding -- especially when most Texans consider themselves the epitomy of being an American and all wave the flag proud.

ArchyBunka
ArchyBunka

@Sibir_Russia @LIberateTEXAS  


The issue of secession was settled in 1865, at a cost of 600,000 dead and a destroyed Southland. 


Liberate, look whose encouraging you, a Russkie.

Mother_Russia
Mother_Russia

@Sibir_Russia @ViableOp so if you have all the answers to solve the worlds financial problems, why aren't you running for government office and trying to change things yourself? Why did you even come to the United States? Why don't you go back to live in Siberia and live under Putin - you obviously believe Mother Russia is not doing anything wrong so why live in a place where everything is wrong? That is what strikes me as hypocritical and ironic at the same time. Just go home.

thetitaniumdragon
thetitaniumdragon

@Sibir_Russia @ViableOp  The ruble has fluctuated by a third relative to the dollar and to the euro in the last five years, and is presently losing value - pretty rapidly, in fact - to both. The idea that the US is not "secured dollars" is... well, I'm not sure what propaganda they feed you on Russian television, but it isn't reality, I'm afraid.


The truth is that the Russians are trying to excerpt corrupt influence on Ukraine. Everyone knows it. The government, likewise, is corrupt; everyone knows that too. The Russian government itself is quite corrupt; again, everyone knows that. There's a reason everyone in Russia has dashcams on their cars; the police are corrupt.


The trouble is that the Russians want power and will brutally put people down to get it. If Putin died of a heart attack tomorrow, the world would be a safer, more secure place. Sadly, he won't, but he has been destabilizing the entire region around him. He caused this mess in Ukraine by getting the Ukranians to pull out of the deal with the EU at the last minute; the riots are at his feet. There was no need for Ukraine to do that.

romano70
romano70

@Sibir_Russia @Mother_Russia @ViableOp  All I can see is someone enjoying the freedom of expression MY COUNTRY, the USA, offers, and using it to criticize when we all know America as a country is FAR SUPERIOR to "mother Russia". I don't need to tell you that your beloved Putin is not a president, but a CZAR and you do not have the freedom of expression that you know we have and enjoy. None is nervous about your nonsense. We just find it ironic that you complain about your neighbor but refuse to see the mess in your OWN HOUSE. Focus on YOUR COUNTRY's problems, then when you have it figured out, come back to offer friendly advice. And good luck with fixing that hot mess you people call Russian "democracy"....

Sibir_Russia
Sibir_Russia

@Mother_Russia @Sibir_Russia@ViableOp  

1) I live in Western Siberia
2) I do not work for the government and does not intend to
3) my work has nothing to do with politics and journalism.
4) I use the online translator.

Why are you so nervously react to my answers?

Sibir_Russia
Sibir_Russia

@thetitaniumdragon @Sibir_Russia@ViableOp  

America’s Debt: The Tip and the Bulk of the Iceberg

 ...America is in a much sorrier state today in terms of the level of its public debt than it was on the eve of the financial crisis... The media very rarely publishes figures on the United States’ total debt. This is partly because these debt figures are not so reliable. The main reason, however, is that for all their mistakes, they present a true picture of the economic situation of the world’s leading country. And it turns out that the picture is an extremely unpleasant one: it raises doubts over whether America really is the world’s leading economy...
The main components of the United States’ total debt are: 1) public debt; 2) the debt of state governments (state debt); 3) the debt of local authorities (local debt); 4) the debt of individuals (personal debt); 5) the debt of nonfinancial companies (business debt); and 6) the debt of the economy’s financial sectors (financial sectors debt). 

As a result, we have the size of the United States’ so-called consolidated debt, equal to USD 186 trillion. The relative level of consolidated debt exceeds the US’ current annual GDP by 11.6 times..

http://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2013/10/10/america-debt-the-tip-and-the-bulk-of-the-iceberg.html