Teixeira’s forthright ways earned him rebukes from the government, including a Feb. 28 statement from the Foreign Ministry accusing him of overstepping his diplomatic role in criticizing the internal political situation.
We don’t see it that way. Teixeira is to be commended for his exemplary service. During his tenure, the nation degraded from the messy chaos of the 2004 Orange Revolution team of Viktor Yushchenko and Yulia Tymoshenko to the nascent authoritarianism of Viktor Yanukovych.
The departing envoy, who is moving on to a much easier assignment in Cape Verde, challenged the administration’s “all-is-well” spin to the public. In an Aug. 29 interview with the Kyiv Post, Teixeira rightly saw his obligation as telling Ukrainians the truth about what the West thinks of Yanukovych’s rule since 2010. To do anything less, he said, would make him complicit in the administration’s relentless assault on democracy. We hope his successor, Poland’s Jan Tombinski, is at least as able.
But as Teixeira departs, it’s a good time to assess the dismal state of relations between the EU and Ukraine.