OSCE Chairman concerned about Ukraine developments

Other News Materials 20 April 2007 10:44 (UTC +04:00)

( OSCE ) - The OSCE Chairman-in-Office, Spanish Foreign Minister Miguel Angel Moratinos, expressed concern following the disruption of constitutional court hearings in Kyiv by demonstrators yesterday.

"It is particularly important that all political forces, as well as citizens, show restraint and a high sense of responsibility in the resolution of this crisis," said Minister Moratinos.

" Ukraine has made a clear choice for democracy. The current political crisis should be solved relying on democratic mechanisms and political dialogue. Street protests are a sign of public participation which I appreciate, but this crisis is not going to be resolved by clashes in the streets."

On 18 April, protesters besieged Kyiv's constitutional courthouse, preventing judges from starting a second day of deliberations before riot police dispersed them. The country's highest court is intervening in a political confrontation between President Viktor Yushchenko and Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych over the president's attempt to disband parliament and call for new elections. Both Yushchenko and Yanukovych have said they want the dispute to be solved peacefully and will respect the court's decision.

Minister Moratinos said he would continue to follow developments closely.

"I expect that all parties will act in full compliance with the constitution of Ukraine and in a spirit of constructive co-operation," he said.

He also repeated an offer of OSCE-led mediation, saying the Organization is ready to provide support whenever the parties deem it appropriate.