Western diplomats in Kyiv believe that Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych attaches strategic priority to bringing Ukraine closer to Europe, particularly the European Union.
But Ukraine continues to backslide on democracy questions. Can the country move closer to Europe at the same time that it moves away from European values?
Yanukovych took office in early 2010 after defeating former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko in a hotly-contested presidential ballot. At the time, many in Ukraine and the West worried that the supposedly “pro-Russian” Yanukovych would turn Kyiv back toward Moscow. In fact, he has pursued a far more nuanced foreign policy.