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“Fairy Tale is Over”: US starts sanctioning Ukrainian politicians

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February 14, 2017 – Fort Russ – 

Antifashist – translated by J. Arnoldski – 

The cancellation of the scandalous Ukrainian politician Oleg Lyashko’s 10-year US visa might be related to his corrupt activities. In addition, Lyashko is only one of many, including new and honest Ukrainian politicians who might be prohibited from appearing in the United States. 

This is the opinion of senior analyst for the Center for Future Studies, Anatoly Oktisyuk. According to Oktisyuk: “Rumors are going around in the diplomatic field that Lyashko’s US visa was revoked due to the fact that Washington considers him one of the most corrupt politicians in Ukraine, and because his positions change like the weather on various important decisions – such as the adoption of the budget and others. This really irritates Western partners.”

Oktisyuk also predicts that Lyashko will not be the last Ukrainian politician to not be allowed in to the US.

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“This year, our Western allies are planning to very seriously take up the question of political corruption in Ukraine, and it cannot be ruled out that other people will follow Lyashko. For example, people from the president’s entourage such as Kononeko, Granovsky, Berezenko, Dovgy, i.e., all the most notorious functionaries,” Oktisyuk suggested.

“I know that the Euro-optimists openly tell all ambassadors and diplomats that our Western partners need to impose individual sanctions against people complicit in political corruption. Therefore, I do not rule out the possibility that similar decisions will subsequently be made in respect to other politicians,” Oktisyuk said.

Ukrainian political expert Taras Zagorodny believes that the reasons for Lyashko’s visa revocation might be political: “We need to see what Lyashko said about Clinton and Trump, because many politicians couldn’t keep their mouths shut. Perhaps this is a signal to all politicians, and Lyashko has simply been the test subject. They’ve showed the whole Ukrainian political scene that they will punish those who interfered in the US elections, and this is only the first punishment. Next will most likely follow more stringent measures, because Manafort, whom they so carelessly flung charges at, is still in Trump’s entourage and is most likely working on the Ukrainian question.”

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“Therefore, this is an illustration of a paradigm shift. Relations will be tougher because many have learned what is going on in our country. The fairy tale has ended and the true story is beginning, and we’ll have to start paying bills. I think that now many politicians who are trying to get to America will be surprised to find out that they can’t,” the expert concluded. 

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