Ukraine has been suffering through terrifying difficulties for months. Now, the parliament is undergoing its first changes since pro-Russian President Vikto Yanukovich was removed from office in February.
Early Thursday, two parties quit the government coalition which will force new elections to the parliament. Soon after, Prime Minister Arseniy Yatseniuk resigned, and he didn’t go quietly.
Although known mostly for his gentle demeanor, Ukraine Prime Minister Yatseniuk exploded at his fellow politicians after they refused to pass a law that would allow a liberalization of control over Ukraine’s pipeline system.
It was simply the last straw for him.
“History will not forgive us,” the former Prime Minister told parliament. “Our government now has no answer to the questions – how are we to pay wages, how are we tomorrow morning going to send fuel for armored vehicles, how will we pay those families who have lost soldiers, to look after the army?”
According to his passionately angered speech, Prime Minister Yatseniuk believes that the parliament risks losing the support of Ukrainians who protested for months against the power of Yanukovich and Russia.
“Millions of people made this revolution. We did not take the European choice but the ‘heavenly hundred’ and thousands of other Ukrainians did,” he said. The comment referenced those killed, mainly due to sniper fire, during the protests.
The Prime Minister will not be immediately leaving office. He’s obligated to continue his duties up until a new Prime Minister is ready to take office. It’s a good thing, too, since Yatseniuk has been an integral part of talks with the U.S. and the European Union.
“Society wants a full reset of state authorities,” Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko said in a statement.
It’s a difficult time for the Ukraine, however, to sit and wait for the government to reset itself; decisions need to be made, and the sooner the better. While Ukraine is waiting for Parliament to right itself, and while those in power to settle in, the people are sliding deeper into difficulty. Whoever takes the place of Prime Minister Yatseniuk will need to settle in quickly.
“It’s unacceptable that because laws have not been passed, we now have no means with which to pay soldiers, doctors, police, we have no fuel for armored vehicles, and no way of freeing ourselves from dependence on Russian gas,” the former Prime Minister said.
“Those people who are sitting there under fire, can we just think of them?”
[ Image courtesy of Business Insider ]