https://daily.rbc.ua/ukr/show/sergey-levochkin-edinstvennaya-vozmozhnost-1489936835.html

- The Opposition Bloc already started preparations for the next election. The party decided that the situation in the country has gotten to the point when the time has come to form an election headquarters. It is yet to be determined who will lead it. OB do not plan to plunge into the campaign by themselves, but are ready to join forces with other parties and individual policy makers. This was shared in an interview with RBC-Ukraine by Deputy Chairman of the OB parliamentary faction Serhiy Lovochkin. He sees no chances that the political crisis can be resolved through negotiations in the parliament or by joining the coalition and believes that a parliamentary election is the only right path forward. It should be mentioned that OB are not alone, as this opinion is also shared by Samopomich and Batkivshchyna. Lovochkin denied reports of a split in his faction. Moreover, according to him, elites of south-eastern and central Ukraine have started the consolidation process building an alliance against the current government. One could read this sentence in many different ways, for example, “the oligarchs decided to change the government.” This process will most likely accelerate after the announcement of the blockade of “certain districts of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts” (CDDLO) by the President and the National Security and Defense Council. The Opposition Bloc condemns this decision and calls to repeal it as soon as possible. In this interview RBC-Ukraine also discussed with Lovochkin Rinat Akhmetov, Dmytro Firtash, Inter TV Channel, the blockade, Yanukovych, Poroshenko, language quotas on TV and radio as well as the number of citizenships he holds.

 - Just before our interview (which took place on March 16 - Ed.), President Petro Poroshenko has signed the decision of the National Security and Defense Council on the blockade of CDDLO. In your opinion, what are the ramifications of this decision?

- In view of the blockade decision the humanitarian situation in Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts becomes a major concern. First of all, we need to make every effort to provide everything necessary for normal life and livelihood, because the people there are very much affected. We need to protect the rights of the people, their ability to move freely. Secondly, the Opposition Bloc condemned the “blockade decision” of the NSDC. We believe that the President toed the line of the radicals in this case, and in terms of governance it is an unacceptable position. In fact, by taking charge of the blockade, the government has shown weakness. No strong nation negotiates with people who illegally force the government to do something. Thirdly, the international community, Europe, is puzzled by this. The blockade has been condemned by Germany, France and the EU. The “blockade decision” of NSDC raises many questions about the Minsk peace process. And last, but not least is the economic impact of the embargo. The Cabinet cited the amount of losses at about 2 billion hryvnias per month. We conducted our own independent analysis, and can say with regret that the losses could amount to 2-3% of GDP. The country is losing 9 million tons of grade A coal (with the annual consumption of 24 million tons), which will generate losses of at least 20 billion hryvnia. In addition, the budgets of all levels received from Ukrainian companies operating in the temporarily uncontrolled territories 23.3 billion UAH in 2014, 9.9 billion UAH in 2015, and about 9 billion UAH in 2016 (estimate based on the first five months - Ed.). Now these taxes will be lost. According to our estimates, due to the loss of mining and metal processing companies the country may come short of about 3 billion dollars of foreign exchange earnings, which in turn would have a negative impact on the balance of payments of the country, which is already negative.

 - When talking about the economic consequences, aren’t you protecting primarily your own interests? I mean Rinat Akhmetov and his SCM who is no stranger to the Opposition Bloc, but rather is one of your party’s donors? The introduction of the embargo is a blow to his business, and thus to you as well.

- All these figures reflect, first and foremost, the state's interests. If Ukraine loses 9 million tons of thermal coal, if it loses foreign exchange earnings, if it loses a significant part of the economy, our GDP will shrink, and it will be a loss that will be felt not just by big business, but by every Ukrainian as well. But let me reiterate: the Opposition Bloc party is primarily concerned about people and their living conditions. The blockade, no doubt, will lead to deterioration of people's lives, and it is a major and the most important problem. Donbas is where Ukrainians live, too. We must do everything to ensure that their lives are normalized, that they live in peace. The crisis in the Ukrainian economy continues. This crisis has been caused not only by the war, but largely by ineffective management, the structure of the economy, corruption, lack of reforms. Ukraine is in a systemic crisis, and after the decision of the National Security and Defense Council on the blockade and further disintegration of Donbas the crisis will only aggravate, along with the deterioration of the investment and business climate.

 - You said that Poroshenko “toed the line of the radicals.” What else could he possible have done? Ignore Samopomich on their “barricades”? Or should he ignore the announcement of “nationalization” of Ukrainian private companies by the separatists?

- I think that the foundation for the current problems was created in 2015, when the government not only “missed” the Crimean blockade, but even took advantage of it for their own political benefit, as an argument about a “broad movement against the aggressor” in the negotiations to resolve the crisis, as well as a lever of pressure on the Russian Federation. The supply of power and water, railroad lines to the Crimea were blocked at that time. The government “missed” the illegal actions of the radicals, which were exactly what we have observed in Donbas since early January. Therefore, the question “what should have the government done?” must be asked in the context of how they responded to the blockade of the Crimea. Today, the government of Ukraine has to find a solution and lift the embargo as soon as possible, find a formula for a peaceful resolution of the crisis, stop the war. Every day the lives of Ukrainians are deteriorating, Ukraine's economy continues to collapse, people in conflict areas are suffering more and more, our servicemen are getting killed. And yet our goal - the peaceful settlement of the conflict and the return of territories - seems to be farther and farther away.

 - The world does not depend only on Poroshenko and the Ukrainian government. Much depends on Vladimir Putin. And the events of recent years suggest that the Russian leader is not capable of keeping his word. After all, Poroshenko can’t be talking to the wall. What role do you envision Russia should play in your version of a peace settlement?

- Ukraine was not left one on one with the Russian Federation. Ukraine is widely supported by the international community, the European Union, the United States of America. Ukraine is not alone in these negotiations. But what is the position of Ukraine? Ukraine is hiding behind the backs of the Western nations and increasingly incites the West to continue the conflict. Ukraine is not making attempts to be the source of compromises that would be acceptable from the standpoint of our national interests. This is because the authorities are afraid to get into a conflict with radicals, to lose their approval rating, they are afraid to take risks in the name of the nation’s destiny. Instead, the government is trying to keep their approval rating, and their goal is not a conflict resolution, but rather self-preservation and manipulation of the agenda in the country, as was the case with the blockade. So we have a completely different outlook on the war. For the government this war is a factor, which helps them to stay afloat, while our goal is a conflict resolution. We believe that the future of Ukraine, regardless of who is in power, is now completely dependent on the speed and effectiveness of settlement of the conflict in eastern Ukraine.

 - What are those “acceptable compromises”? And you didn’t say anything about Putin.

- Acceptable compromises are a constantly changing set of terms that will bring peace, save the lives of our military and civilians, preserve the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine, protect the rights of our citizens, and will also satisfy the geopolitical negotiators. You and I do not have much information on the progress of negotiations. They are not public, and I understand this. However, it is important that the Ukrainian society is informed about the result of such negotiations in a timely and accurate manner, and that such negotiations bring the much needed progress. But there is no progress. The assessment the Ukrainian society gives to the government for the negotiations and restoring peace is not even a D, it’s less than an F.

 - Let me elaborate on this. Can we allow holding elections in Donbas in the presence of Russian troops there? Can we hold elections without an effective control over the Ukraine-Russia border?

- You are talking about three parallel processes now. The first process is to regain control over the border. There is no doubt that the control should be restored as soon as possible, and this should be done with the involvement of OSCE. But it is absolutely clear that this cannot be done by military means. It can only be done through negotiations. Secondly, are elections possible? I believe that without this strategic step, life cannot be normalized in Donbas. The holding of elections is a symbol and at the same time, it is a way to the emergence of legitimate authorities in Donbas that will be recognized by all. “Purity” of the elections and their legitimacy are an essential subject here. It is clear that when there is no free press, no political competition, when the law does not work, when it is impossible to control the vote tabulation, there can be no confidence in the results. Unfortunately, sometimes such things happen even in the territories controlled by the Ukrainian authorities. Facts of massive fraud that occurred, for example, during the election of the current Kyiv City Council are well known. The investigation into the fact that the final election protocol lists a higher number of ballots than the number of ballots that was actually printed is still ongoing - to no avail. It is known that two sets of ballots were actually printed, that results were doctored. So without a doubt, we need to create conditions that would instill confidence in the Donbas elections and ensure that their results are credible. The OB position is unequivocal: any and all elections that will take place in the territory of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts, will have to be held under the Ukrainian legislation, with the participation of political parties and with the possibility of media coverage.

 - You now sound like President Poroshenko...

- I sound like a man who respects the law and the Constitution.

 - The Opposition Bloc held a meeting of an extended Political Council of the party, based on results of which you stated that the party had started preparations for elections. Let's first find out, what kind of elections are you getting ready for?

- The Opposition Bloc is in the process of establishing a campaign headquarters for the next election. I do not want to make any predictions as to what election will come first, but the Opposition Bloc will participate in the local elections in Donbas, in the national parliamentary election and will also nominate a candidate in the presidential election in Ukraine.

 - Who will head the election headquarters?

- We have many people well-versed in the electoral process.

 - Who is your candidate for President?

- This will be the decision of the party, and it will obviously be a person with the highest political rating.

 - So far it is Yuriy Boiko, the head of the OB parliamentary faction.

-  Yuriy Boiko is one of the most popular politicians in the country.

 - Elections are due in 2019, and we are still in the beginning of 2017. Isn’t it a bit too early for a campaign headquarters? Or do you know something about the possibility of early elections?

- We believe there are prospects for early elections.

 - What gives you grounds to make this assumption?

- The situation in Ukraine.

 - In a recent television interview Petro Poroshenko said: “there will be no early parliamentary elections, which is what Russia is interested in; Russia is interested in destabilizing the situation, and I will not give it to them.” “Them” is the opposition, which includes you. Thus, there are no chances that elections will be held in the next two years.

- The reasons that could lead to early elections are on the surface - quite a few of them actually, and judging by the fact that the government so often repeats the mantra that there will be no elections, it is all the more clear that this issue is on the agenda. Everyone has his own agenda, I guess. Some people do not want elections; others believe that the time has come. We as the opposition believe that the only way to restore law and order in the country is to change the government.

 - In that case, join the ruling coalition...

- We rule out any possibility of joining the ruling coalition for many reasons, and some of the most important include ideological contradictions. In addition, we have significant differences with the government in matters of the economy. First of all, I am talking about the social policy. We believe that Ukrainians cannot be robbed, Ukrainians cannot survive with these prices for food, clothing and medicines, we can’t afford to raise the retirement age now... We demand to repeal the increased tariffs and increase average wages and pensions. We are not satisfied with foreign debt restructuring negotiated by the previous government. Let me remind you that because of the actions of “Team Yatseniuk” Ukrainians will have to pay foreign lenders a “tax on economic growth” through 2048, even after the actual loans will have been repaid. And there are many other similar “achievements.”

 - Well, it’s not that obvious with the retirement age. The Prime Minister said there were no plans to raise the retirement age.

- Have you seen the [IMF] Memorandum?

- Yes.

- We have not seen the authentic text of the memorandum. I mean we have seen some “versions,” but no one has provided the final version of the document even to the Parliament. We are talking about international obligations here assumed by the Government on behalf of the Ukrainian people.

 - Not only your party, but also Samopomich and Batkivshchyna call for early parliamentary elections. Why such different political forces converge on this issue?

- There were five coalition factions, and one opposition faction in Parliament following the 2014 elections. I emphasize, the Opposition Bloc is the only ideological opposition to the current government. Then the coalition split into 2 + 2 + 1: two coalition factions, two factions are in the opposition, and there is yet another party with non-traditional political identity - they still can’t make up their mind. The split in the “coalition of five” occurred, when changes started to occur in the approval rating of the parties that were part of this formation: the Popular Front figures dropped into the margin of ​​statistical error, and the BPP support dropped into single digits. At the same time, the support of Batkivshchyna and Samopomich grew. In this regard, there was an intra-coalitional conflict, which defined the attitude of Samopomich and Batkivshchyna towards the ruling coalition. The faction of “non-traditional identity” continues to shift from the opposition to the coalition and back.

 - Are you talking about the Radical Party?

Of course. Now two parties from “the coalition of five” are fighting for snap elections, because they have a higher approval rating, while two other parties are against this, because they are trying to stay in power, even though the number of deputies in the coalition is 223. The Parliament Speaker would not publish a list of deputies in the coalition, which is a direct proof that it does not exist. Thus, the power in the parliament is held in an unconstitutional manner by PF and BPP factions. The Opposition Bloc will continue to fight for a more effective model of governance in the country. The current “coalition of war” is not only unconstitutional, it is also absolutely ineffective. There is no peace, the economy decays, prices and tariffs constitute an act of genocide, and there are no prospects for improvement.

 - Perhaps, a change of government may become a way out of the situation? Do you think the resignation of the Groisman Cabinet is possible after April 14? Can the Opposition Bloc vote for it?

- It is our consistent position that all staffing matters should be voted for by members of the coalition the Popular Front and BPP; they should also take responsibility for their appointments. Today the situation is absurd - there is no coalition, but the government is there. Therefore, any turbulence with the current government is extremely risky for the current quasi-coalition, leaving alone the appointment of a new prime minister.

 - But my question wasn’t about appointments, I asked about a vote to dismiss the government.

- If the government goes down, then immediately after this the parliament will need to re-sign the coalition agreement and form a new Cabinet. But how is it possible to appoint a new government without 226 deputies in the coalition? That is why PF and BPP need the Radical Party.

 - Well, it’s all good then, you will get a documented fact that the coalition does not exist; the government, which, in your opinion, implements anti-social policies, will resign; and there will be every reason to call snap elections.

- That's how it would have been in any European country that respects the Constitution and laws, a country with established standards of political culture. But in Ukraine things are different now: the government is based on a coalition, where the number of deputies is less than what is specified in the Constitution, with a total approval rating of less than 10%. The government is ineffective, the war continues, people get poorer, the economy is in shambles, and yet the authorities see the prevention of early elections as their primary task.

 - So this means that you are going to vote neither for the government dismissal, nor for the possible appointment of a new government, correct?

- We will need to consult whether we would vote for the government’s resignation. However, we will not vote for a new Cabinet. The Opposition Bloc rules out any involvement in a government coalition in this Parliament.

 - Who will finance the OB campaign?

- Representatives of businesses always take part in the funding of the Opposition Bloc. First of all, from the regions where our support is traditionally high. We have large factions in the councils of all levels in south-eastern regions of Ukraine. There are many people, who support the party not only with their words, but also financially.

 - Rinat Akhmetov and Dmytro Firtash, for example.

This question should be posed to the two respected gentlemen.

 - A month ago, there was information about an alleged split in the Opposition Bloc. Ostensibly MPs affiliated with Akhmetov were ready to leave the OB ranks. What was it all about?

- Some people always spread rumors that something is wrong with the Opposition Bloc. The government even seeks out the weak among our ranks and forces or motivates them to leave the faction. But we only get stronger after this. Now this process has actually reversed. It is the process of consolidation of elites, especially in south-eastern and central Ukraine. This includes anyone who is opposed to the current government. We position the Opposition Bloc as a consolidation platform for all political parties, movements, individual politicians, who are ideologically close to us, and who will go with us to the next election.

 - So we may actually see the same scenario as in 2007, when other parties joined the Party of Regions, for example, the Republican Party of Ukraine, which at that time was headed by Yuriy Boiko?

- This practice exists, despite the fact that the establishment of blocs of political parties is not envisioned in the current electoral law. For example, in the parliamentary elections of 2012 Batkivshchyna and the Popular Front created “The United Opposition.” Another example is the union of parties in the Bloc of Petro Poroshenko in 2014. By the way, the electoral law of Ukraine does not meet European standards and the current Constitution. We believe that one of the most important issues on the parliament agenda should be the development of effective electoral legislation in order to eliminate the practices that we saw in the last election of the Kyiv City Council. Especially considering the fact that there are plenty of other outrageous examples: voter bribery in majority districts, voter fraud, the use of administrative resources.

 - How did the “shadow accounting” operation of the Party of Regions work?

- I know nothing about it. Moreover, I am sure that this story that emerged three years after the Party of Regions had ceased to exist is a political manipulation to divert people’s attention from the situation in the country.

 - According to the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine (NABU), another forensic examination confirmed the authenticity of the signature of CEC Chairman Mykhailo Okhendovsky in the “PoR ledger”...

- Today, the authorities can obtain any expert conclusion they might need, on any topic in our country. Let's wait for the response of Okhendovsky’s lawyers.

 - Does it mean that you deny the existence of “shadow accounting” operation in the Party of Regions?

- I know nothing about it.

 - About the Inter TV Channel. It was reported that there had been a conflict between you and the other co-owner of the channel, Dmytro Firtash...  

- This is nonsense.

 - So is everything fine now?

- Things have always been fine between us.

 - Is there an update on the investigation into the arson of Inter?

- There is no update on the investigation of the arson, in which journalists have suffered. There is no update on Sheremet's murder. There is no update on Buzyna's murder. There is no information on the people burnt alive on May 2, [2014] in Odesa. In general, there is no updated information on a number of high-profile crimes. No one explains anything to anyone. The government doesn’t do anything. All unsolved crimes is the government’s responsibility.

 - The media could not help but notice the frequent appearance of Yulia Tymoshenko on the air of Inter TV Channel. Is this part of the editorial policy, editorial choice? Or is this the evidence of convergence of interests of the Opposition Bloc and Batkivshchyna?

- I do not interfere in the editorial policy, I consider it unacceptable. With regard to the appearance of various politicians in the Inter studio, we have both government officials, and representatives of the opposition in our programs. The mission of the channel is to objectively cover everything that happens in the country, simply tell people the truth.

 - What do you think will happen to “the Firtash case”?

- Firtash is not guilty of any crime. I am sure that he will protect himself and prove his innocence and his politically motivated prosecution in those jurisdictions where he faces charges, primarily in Austria.

 - Can he be used as a tool for political pressure on Ukraine? Firtash is not only a wealthy man, but also a source of a great deal of information on business processes in the country, and even information on election of President Poroshenko.

- Do not offer me conspiracy theories. Firtash is persecuted for political reasons. These motives were exposed by his lawyers in all legal proceedings he was involved in. Now his lawyers and he personally made a number of statements, the key message of which is that he is innocent, and that he will defend himself.

 - Do you talk to President Poroshenko?

- Yes.

 - What are some of the topics of your discussions?

- We discuss the topics of mutual interest of the President and myself as a member of the opposition.

 - And what topics specifically are you interested in?

- I am interested in achieving peace as soon as possible, in a functioning democracy, the protection of the media, for example, from any arsons, the development of the political situation, and economic reform.

 - Do you talk as representatives of the opposition and the government, or do you talk as two policy makers?

- And what is the difference?

 - It seems to me, the opposition is more about making demands, while policy makers are trying to strike a deal.

- Our communication is related to the issues that are important to me in terms of the functioning of the state.

 - Did you reach some consensus on some issues?

- That is a philosophical question. Without a doubt, all declare that they seek what is best for Ukraine and Ukrainians, but everyone chooses his own path. The President sees one way how to achieve this goal, we see a different one. Let me put it this way: we have more differences in our views and approaches than we have things in common.

 - The Opposition Bloc is regularly accused of two things: (1) many people in the party previously were members of the Party of Regions and; (2), and this is something Oleh Liashko is particularly vocal about, that the OB - and I quote the Radical Party leader here - “serves the Kremlin.” How do you think such allegations will affect the results of those elections, which we have already discussed, and how do you respond to such accusations?

- The Opposition Bloc is a patriotic, pro-Ukrainian political party that represents the interests of a large number of Ukrainians. We are independent in making our decisions. We do not depend in the formulation of our policies on anyone except the Ukrainian people. I have no interest in commenting the tales of our political opponents. All those charges are elements of political PR, and more often than not - smear campaigns. As for the Party of Regions... Now about 25% of the current ruling party - BPP, were in the Party of Regions (PoR) in the past. The vast majority of those, who were PoR members or supported PoR, are honest people.  They have no relation to the crimes of the previous government, which are now being investigated.

 - So you think that the politically toxic affiliation that was more or less attached to all PoR members after the Revolution of Dignity, is already gone?

- I think that affiliation with the parties that are in power now (particularly, the Popular Front) is much more toxic. After some time, you will see that the word “toxic” will apply to any member of the ruling coalition, which has brought the country to a state of the poorest and most corrupt nation in Europe. Their toxicity increases for them every day and every minute. That is why more and more people are pulling out of the coalition. That is why “the coalition of five” has split into 2+2+1. That is why, the approval rating of the Popular Front is now within the margin of statistical error. And there are many other such “that-is-why’s”.

 - Were you summoned for questioning on charges of treason brought against Viktor Yanukovych?

- No. Because when he committed these acts, I had not worked in the presidential administration. At that time I was in the middle of a private trip to the United States.

 - I thought that your relationship with Yanukovych had to remain at least at some level. You have been with him since early 2000’s...

- We have not talked since January 17, 2014.

 - In your opinion, why did the former president say that he had information that Lovochkin was involved in the forceful dispersion of Maidan on the night of November 29, 2013 and to the collapse of the parliamentary coalition?

- You should ask him that.

 - I am asking you.

- I do not want to comment on it. He deserted, he abandoned his post, his supporters and voters, what can I say?

 - Did he betray Ukraine?

- I do not want to pass judgments.

 - The case is now in court. Would you testify to the fact that Yanukovych has committed a treason?

- I do not want to comment on it. It is the sphere of competence of the prosecution and defense - make qualifications, sign, attack and defend.

 - Why do you not want to talk about Yanukovych?

- Not interested.

 - You have spent a large enough piece of a life right next to him.

- Perhaps I should describe this in my memoirs. I have accumulated a lot of records and materials of historical interest.

 - You are still too far from it.

- Maybe closer than you think.

 - Why aren’t you a frequent visitor at the Rada?

- First of all, I come to the parliament on a regular basis. Secondly, as you know, the right of the opposition are derogated in the Ukrainian parliament. Since the beginning of its work the opposition has not received a single key position, it is completely ignored by the ruling majority. Our bills are not considered, they are not even included in the agenda. So we use all public and non-parliamentary forms of influence in order to protect the rights and interests of our constituents. The rights of the opposition, the law and the Constitution of Ukraine are violated in parliament.

 - And yet sometimes you back the government with your votes.

- Never. We vote for or against certain motions or bills only when we think that this makes sense, when it can improve the situation in the country and improve people's lives.

 - You did not vote in the parliament to increase the presence of the Ukrainian language in television programming. Why?

- Because it contradicts the European Charter on Languages ​​and EU standards.

 - But it does not contradict Ukraine’s national interests.

- If we are on the path of European integration, the adoption of high democratic standards that give people more freedoms, such actions are simply not logical, they will bring harm. How can the parliament reduce the freedom and deprive people of the right to hear or watch programs in the language, in which they want to consume them? Using this philosophy, the government will simply kill broadcasting in the language of Crimean Tatars, for example. Why do people who speak languages ​​other than the official language, should be deprived of their rights? We do not agree with such initiatives, they restrict civil rights and freedoms. Anything that restricts freedom, should not be supported in the Ukrainian parliament. In real life, the Popular Front initiative to increase [Ukrainian language] quotas has two real purposes. Here’s the first one: the authors seek to improve their dead approval rating by making populist decisions (the bill authors include members of the Popular Front, Batkivshchyna and BPP - Ed.). The second one is a government attack on uncontrolled media. A sort of political revenge, if you will. The language quotas, among other things, complicate the reintegration of Russian-speaking eastern territories. People should be addressed in their own language. The sheer fact that people will not vote for the Popular Front or for “the coalition of war” - that is their problem, not the problem of our compatriots. In this regard, I would like to come back to the subject of the blockade and use a specific example. So they organized this blockade to prevent shipments of coal from the [uncontrolled] Ukrainian territory, alright. At the same time, almost two years ago the government made a decision to open the Ukrainian market for Russian chemical fertilizers, and now every year Ukraine imports Russian fertilizers worth $ 200 million...

 - And in doing so, they are stepping on Dmytro Firtash’ toes and on his Ostchem...

- Firtash’ business was the target, for sure, and, as we have heard there was also the corruption component on the part of certain government officials as well. But it is not Firtash, who suffers. Thousands of workers employed in Ukrainian chemical enterprises and their families - those are the ones, who suffer. Millions of pensioners are affected as the Pension Fund does not receive revenues from these chemical companies. The state budget suffers, and thus, teachers and doctors, too, as they should receive larger salaries, but they don’t because these chemical factories cannot pay them. The NBU foreign reserves suffer, as every year Russian fertilizer manufacturers get $ 200 million, which puts pressure on foreign exchange reserves. Is there at least some logic in this policy, except for corruption? From these examples it is clear that coalition decisions are driven by populism and revenge.

 - What did the coalition government do well?

- That’s a good question... It is very difficult to answer it... Almost nothing.

 - Maybe their fight against corruption?

- The fight against corruption is a very important goal. Representatives of the current authorities get busted, and the authorities resist and often cover up those who are caught red-handed. “The Minister of All Fiscal Revenues” (Roman Nasirov, the head of the State Fiscal Service - Ed.) worked right under the noses of the two prime ministers and the parliamentary coalition, and, as it turns out, he was steeling, too. Did they not see this?

 - The court is yet to decide whether Nasirov was stealing or not.

- You are right, there is only a political assessment of the Ukraine’s foreign partners and the government itself, as well as a court decision of the highest amount of bail in the history of Ukraine. I do not know if this man is guilty or not, but it is clear that he is definitely not “the under-the-water” part of the iceberg of Ukrainian corruption that has become so entrenched in this government. Do you know what is happening to the NABU audit (on March 16, on the day of the interview, Speaker Andriy Parubiy tried to put to vote the appointment of a representative of the Parliament to conduct an audit in NABU - Ed.) - The parliament is trying to elect a government-friendly auditor. This is not a fight against corruption, it is its imitation.

 - Could Valeria Hontareva lead the National Bank if the Opposition Bloc was in power?

- No.

 - Thank you. That is all. Okay, one last question. Just in case. How many citizenships do you have?

- Only Ukrainian.