Thursday, April 29, 2010

President's address to the Ukrainian people

I address you at a very special moment, when in order to start crucial reforms we as a nation must feel huge responsibility for the fate of the state.

I know my voters support the steps I made during the first 50 days in office of the President. In fulfilling my promises, I did everything to consolidate all branches of power.

For the first time in many years the Head of State and the Prime Minister don’t confront each other anymore.

A strong parliamentary coalition was created. The budget was adopted. Chaos ended, the country finally got a long-awaited stability.

In foreign policy I confirmed the course of European integration.

The talks held in Brussels affirmed that the European Union praised our determination to create join free trade area and introduce visa-free travel for Ukrainian citizens.

The United Europe perceives our internal policy as the course aimed at fighting poverty, corruption, and providing high living standards for the Ukrainians.

After visiting Brussels, I went to Moscow to resolve the problem we inherited from our predecessors, to normalize relations with Russia and to renegotiate the crushing gas contracts that put the state on the brink of social and economic collapse.

After five years of making Russia an enemy, it wasn’t easy to restore Russian leadership’s confidence in Ukraine.

But I have managed to do it and today I am ready to report to my voters that now and on the dialogue with our large neighbor will be built on the principles of equality, good neighborliness and healthy pragmatism, without confrontation and anti-Russian rhetoric.

Did we pay too much for that? No, because the agreements, reached with Moscow, are mutually beneficial.

Documents, signed in Kharkiv, will provide a significant reduction of gas prices.

This means the increase of social security for every Ukrainian and the beginning of our economy coming out from deep crisis.

It also guarantees strengthening energy security of the whole European continent.

The whole civilized world praised results of my talks with President Medvedev.

In Washington, Brussels and all European capitals they are considered to be an undoubted success of Ukraine.

Only our opposition remained dissatisfied.

Why does it call you to barricades again, why does it undermine stability achieved for the first time in many years of endless wars between the country’s leadership?

The answer is – because it seeks to dissolve the parliament again in the name of the so-called political expediency, because it understands that stability, strong power, order and normalization of relations with Russia is its political end. Once again it hungers power at any price.

They need war. Recent developments in the walls of the Verkhovna Rada showed that the political opportunists are ready to throw smoke bombs not only in the parliament hall, but the whole Ukraine.

We need stability and development, ability to work normally, reforms and friendly relations with our neighbors. And we will achieve this, just as we could stand up to the opponents of changes for the better.

Soon you will see that we follow the right direction. I bear personal responsibility for it.

I promise you - Ukraine will be strong and prosperous.

We’ve already started moving toward this goal.