world became less safe, less predictable. The post-war global security system
was ruined,” he said during a two-hour long talk, a monologue and answers
to 30 questions put by the journalists, some quite provocative.

War with Russia

During the event, Poroshenko signed the law renouncing Ukraine’s non-aligned status. Adopted by the parliament on Dec. 23, the document allows the country to apply
for membership in NATO, the 28-nation military alliance with headquarters in Brussels. To have any hope of joining NATO, however, Ukraine’s army needs to be reformed to meet the bloc’s standards.

Ukraine’s thrust to the West triggered Russia’s aggression and annexation of Crimea as well as the war it instigated in Donetsk and Luhansk. 

“Someone really hoped that we are not able to
protect ourselves,” Poroshenko said. “But I am proud how Ukraine
lived through this year. We have not just survived – we have found a worthy answer to all these


Sept. 5 cease-fire signed in Minsk, Belarus, is considered by the Ukrainian
leader as an achievement, even though the agreement has not stopped the war in
the Donbas since then and was followed by further negotiations.  “There is progress,” Poroshenko said. “Point by point, Minsk agreements start to be effective.”

then, more than 1,500 Ukrainian hostages have been exchanged and freed, including
150 people that were liberated recently. Around 900 Ukrainians are still being
captured by the pro-Russian separatists, according to the human rights

the Minsk agreements, the Ukrainian army was losing around 100 soldiers a day, but
for the past four months around 200 nation’s servicemen have been killed. On Dec. 29,
Ukraine lost three combatants in a fight at Donetsk airport, successfully
protecting it from the separatist attack.

next step, according to Poroshenko, is to turn the fragile truce into stable peace.
For this Ukraine will also need a control over its eastern border with Russia. He
believes as soon as Russian troops leave the territory of Ukraine, the conflict
in the Donbas will be over.  


The Ukrainian
leader stressed that there is no military solution to the situation in Donetsk
and Luhansk oblasts as Russian army is among the strongest in Europe, while
Ukraine lacks military power, especially for the offensive actions.

He says
negotiations need to go on and be close to the “Norman format,”
including Western allies. However, if Russia starts an uncamouflaged
intervention, Ukraine will introduce martial law.

Around 200 journalists attended the Dec. 29 news conference of Ukrainian president. © Volodymyr Petrov

Business and personal affairs

whose fortune Dragon Capital investment house estimates at $816 million, seemed
to be prepared to answer questions about why he didn’t sell either Roshen, a
chocolate maker, and 5 Channel, a television station. Ukrainian legislation
doesn’t allow a public servant to run any businesses.

running a business and owning it are two different options. Poroshenko
explained that he is not involved in managing Roshen. He had several meetings
with potential buyers, but all of them are waiting for the war to come to an


will have to sell Roshen to the company’s management that will pay in several
installments, if there will be no other clients,” he said. “I’m not
going to sell the 5 Channel, I didn’t promise to.”

question about his son Oleksiy, a 29-year-old graduate of London School of
Economics who became a member of parliament this year, made the president a
little nervous. “He’s 30 years old, let him decide what to do with his
life. Look at what he does and judge him,” Poroshenko said without a
tremble in his voice.

Poroshenko’s predecessor, Viktor Yanukovych, was asked why his son Viktor violates the constitution by voting with the cards of other members of parliament, he asked
the journalist back if she had their own children and added that when she became a mother she would understand what a kid means. When
the EuroMaidan Revolution, that led to more than 100 people killed by police,
overthrew Yanukovych’s regime in February, both father and a son fled to

Plans for 2015

prepares to start his diplomatic year with a visit to Astana, Kazakhstan’s
capital city, on Jan. 15. There he hopes to continue peace talks with Putin,
accompanied by the German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President
Francois Hollande.


May, he will attend a European Union summit in Latvia’s Riga where he expects a
further step in establishing a full-scale visa-free regime between Ukraine and
the EU. This should be a continuation of Ukraine’s Association Agreement with
the 28-nation bloc.

for the real ceasefire, the second most important goal is bringing the economy
back to growth so that the projected gross domestic product will increase by
0.5 percent in 2016, as the Cabinet expects.

Message for Putin

slogan on the background of Poroshenko’s seat during his Dec. 29 news conference
said “Faith. Will. Victory,” or “Vira. Volya. Peremoga” in
Ukrainian that gives an abbreviation VVP that could also be read as a full name
of Russian President – Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin.

waiting for the Ukrainian president to arrive at Mystetsky Arsenal, journalists
were making guesses whether this is just a mere coincidence or an encrypted message
for the violent Russian leader.

Kyiv Post staff writer Oksana Lyachynska can be
reached at [email protected].

To suggest a correction or clarification, write to us here
You can also highlight the text and press Ctrl + Enter

Comments (0)

Write the first comment for this!