ISSUE 14  - APRIL 11, 2019
A Friends of Ukraine Network Initiative ...
Ukraine Voters Lack Information on Presidential Frontrunner's Views - According to Transatlantic Task Force Experts
By Adrian Karmazyn

Experts in Kyiv provide a Ukraine presidential election update for a Transatlantic Task Force teleconference. L to R:  Halyna Petrenko, Inna Borzylo, Oleksiy Haran, Olha Aivazovska and Vasyl Babych.  Credit: RPR/UCMC

With less than two weeks left before Ukrainian voters make a final decision on who will be their president for the next five years, the Transatlantic Task Force on Elections and Civil Society in Ukraine held an international teleconference on April 9th devoted to the results of the first round of the elections and concerns regarding the upcoming second round in which incumbent Petro Poroshenko and his opponent, Volodymyr Zelensky, will compete.

In their opening remarks, Johnathan Katz (German Marshall Fund) and Orest Deychakiwsky (U.S.-Ukraine Foundation), who served as first-round election observers in Vinnytsia and Mykolaiv, respectively, gave Ukraine high marks regarding the conduct of the March 31st vote.

The second round of presidential elections: what to expect for Ukraine? UCMC 09.04.2019
Watch the video:  The second round of presidential elections: what to expect for Ukraine? 
UCMC 09.04.2019

Mr. Katz was part of a National Democratic Institute mission and citing that organization's election assessment he noted that "the election was genuinely competitive" and that "despite ongoing Russian aggression Ukraine held an election that broadly reflects the will of voters and meets key international standards." Speaking about the mood of electorate he said we see "a frustration among Ukrainian voters about the state of the economy, about the state of reforms, about the ongoing conflict in the East" and "those issues are still front and center as we go into the second round of the elections."

Mr. Deychakiwsky was part of the observer mission of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), which deployed nearly a thousand observers from 45 countries all over Ukraine. The election was assessed positively by the OSCE, he said, and stressed that: "Ukraine again showed its strong commitment to democracy. This irritated Moscow to no end." He added that "the positive conduct of the elections increased the confidence of Ukraine's international friends and partners [with regard to] Ukraine's commitment to a brighter, democratic, Euro-Atlantic future. And this, I think, is ultimately what matters. And no matter who is elected president-and yes, it will probably be a bit more challenging in the event of a Zelensky victory-but no matter what, the West, I think, still needs to continue to support Ukraine, and especially Ukraine's civil society."

Olha Aivazovska, who heads Elections and Parliamentary Programs of the Civil Network OPORA, concurred with the positive assessments of the conduct of the first round saying that "these elections were very competitive" and that "the number of violations decreased" as compared to the previous election in 2014. She noted that five candidates had representatives in 99% of the country's election commissions with many of them lacking sufficient training and experience. This sometimes led to violations of electoral laws and procedures but they were more of a technical nature and not systematic. The presence of international partners helped minimize serious violations, she said.

Inna Borzylo, Chief Executive Officer of Centre UA, explained that her organization, in partnership with the NGO Chesno, focused on enlightening the public about the political platforms of the candidates and on analyzing campaign expenditures. She characterized the programs and pronouncements of the candidates as "quite populistic," with the majority of them promising bigger salaries, higher pensions and lower prices for utilities like gas, "without providing any details about how they would implement these ideas." Ironically, although the voters look to the president to solve the country's socio-economic problems, the constitutional prerogatives of the presidency are primarily in the sphere of foreign policy, defense and national security, she said. According to the Constitution, it is mainly the prime minister who is responsible for the government's economic policy.

Oleksiy Haran, a professor at the University of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy and research director at the Democratic Initiatives Foundation (DIF), underscored the importance of the exit poll that DIF conducted in partnership with other independent organizations as an instrument of "democratic control." When election results differ significantly from exit poll results it can be a sign of election falsification, but in this case, the tally of the Central Election Committee and the exit poll were consistent ... 

Adrian Karmazyn is Vice-Chair of the Friends of Ukraine Network Democracy and Civil Society Task Force, an initiative of the U.S.-Ukraine Foundation.
UCCA Calls for Volunteer Election Observers
For Second Round of Ukraine's Presidential Election  #вибори2019 

On April 4th,  Ukraine's Central Election Commission (CEC)  released the final results of the March 31 st presidential elections.  With 39 candidates vying for president, no candidate received an absolute majority. According to the CEC, with voter turnout at 62.8%, Volodymyr Zelenskiy secured 30.24% of the vote, while Ukraine's incumbent president, Petro Poroshenko garnered 15.95%.  The  presidential run-off election between Zelenskiy and Poroshenko will be held on  Sunday, April 21 st .

Ukrainian Congress Committee of America is therefore, once again, seeking volunteers to join its Election Observation Mission (EOM) to monitor the April 21 st  decisive run-off elections.

DEADLINE:  Interested individuals must fill out the attached observer application and provide a scanned copy of their passport to the UCCA office by April 12th. Those observers accredited for the March 31st vote are eligible to monitor the April 21st vote.

With long-term experience in observing elections, the UCCA EOM will conduct a training briefing for its observers on Thursday, April 18 th  on how best to serve as international election monitors. Official CEC accreditation will be provided and coordinated through the UCCA, which will also organize in-country travel and lodging, translators and guides, if necessary. 
The goal of the UCCA EOM is to support an open and transparent electoral process during the run-off elections, specifically to monitor adherence to the law, prevent violations and provocations at polling stations during voting and provide an assessment of the electoral process. The UCCA does not support any one candidate or political party and supports Ukraine's commitment to OSCE standards for a free and fair election that accurately reflects the will of the electorate. The UCCA-EOM is therefore comprised of volunteers, with registered International Election Observers responsible for all costs related to their participation in the UCCA-EOM, including, but not limited to, travel and lodging.
For further information about the UCCA's International Election Observer program, or to submit your application please email UCCA's EOM Coordinator, Tamara Olexy at  tolexy@ucca.org .





The Ivano-Frankivsk Film Commission is a program of the Association of Economic Development of Ivano-Frankivsk The AEDIF works with many different NGO's to promote the region within Ukraine and abroad. 

<<< Mariana Zaklinska talks about her efforts to bring foreign film producers to the Ivano-Frankivsk region and familiarize them with the services available locally in this very picturesque area of Ukraine. 

For additional information, contact Michael Buryk:  


T he U.S.-Ukraine Foundation invites you to attend  ...
Opportunities for Public-Private Partnerships in Ukraine Today  

Monday, April 15
12:15 - 12:30pm  Light lunch & Networking
12:30 - 1:45pm    Presentation, Q&A
U.S.-Ukraine Foundation
1090 Vermont Avenue, NW -  Suite #600, Washington, DC 20005
  Email info@usukraine.org by COB Friday, April 12

A distinguished three-member delegation from Ukraine will be leading this roundtable discussion:   

Oleh Skydan -  Rector of Zhytomyr National Agroecological University (ZNAEU). In 2000 he graduated from the State Agroecological Academy of Ukraine (Zhytomyr). During 1998 - 1999 he undertook an internship in Germany within the framework of the programme DEULA. During 2000-2004 he worked in the Central Economic Administration of Zhytomyr Regional Council holding the positions of lead specialist, chief specialist, deputy head of department, head of Department of Pricing Policy, Financial Relations and Service Sector. In 2004 he earned his Ph.D. in Economics (Dissertation subject "Formation of Regional Agricultural Policy for Food Security"). He defended his doctoral dissertation at NAAS Institute for Agricultural Economy of Ukraine in 2009 (dissertation subject "Organizational and Economic Mechanism for the Formation of Agricultural Policy in Ukraine"). 

He has been a Professor at the Department of Innovative Entrepreneurship and Investment Activity since 2015. He is an author and co-author of more than 140 scientific and methodological works on agricultural policy, food security, organic production, and formation of the system of scientific and educational provision for economic sectors.

Professor  Tetyana Zinchuk  is the head of the International Economic Relations and European Integration Department, ZNAEU. Being a Doctor of Economics she is active researcher of the processes of EU Common agricultural policy reforming. She also studies mechanisms of socially responsible and sustainable agribusiness. Her teaching activity is concentrated on the topic, devoted to the evolution of socially responsible business-model in agriculture.

Oleksandr Kovalchuk  (PhD in Economics), dean of Accounting and Finance Faculty, ZNAEU. Research areas of interest include institutional support of business, world experience of rural and sustainable development. Oleksandr has a scholarship experience with several US land-grant universities (University of Nebraska-Lincoln, North Dakota State University, Penn State University). Dr. Kovalchuk authored over thirty peer reviewed journal articles and book chapters. He has more than 80 papers, presentations at various domestic and international conferences. Professionally, he spent 20 years with Zhytomyr National Agroecological University. It makes his teaching methods and skills multiply. Oleksandr is head of NGO «Agricultural Advisory Service of ZNAU».

Speakers include:    Amb. Daniel Fried Distinguished Fellow, Future Europe Initiative and Eurasia Center, Atlantic Council; David Mortlock, Senior Fellow, Global Energy Center, Atlantic Council; Samantha Sultoon, Visiting Senior Fellow, Global Business & Economics Program and Scowcroft Center for Strategy & Security,  Atlantic Council;   Caroline Vicini , Deputy Head of Delegation, Delegation of the European Union to the United States; and,  Amb. Richard Morningstar (Moderator), Founding Chairman, Global Energy Center, Atlantic Council

Ukraine's Future Leaders
on the Frontlines of Change

Thursday, April 18, 2019
3:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

The discussion will be followed by a reception.

Atlantic Council Headquarters
 1030 15th St. NW, Washington, DC 20005


A woman's mission to preserve Ukrainian churches
By Askold Krushelnycky, Kyiv Post, April 8, 201 9  

A church in Ukraine's village of Ripne, Ivano-Frankivsk Oblast,  was designed and built in 1931 by Evhen Nahirny, an architect who with his father designed and built some 390 Ukrainian churches in the 19th and 20th centuries.

WASHINGTON, D.C. - A Ukrainian-American woman learned through a series of coincidences that her relatives - a probably uniquely prolific father and son team of architects - designed and built some 360 Ukrainian churches in the 19th and 20th centuries.

She has started a foundation that is working to restore and preserve the churches, many of which have been battered by war, communist-era neglect and the elements.

Khristina Lew, said her great grandfather, Vasyl Nahirny, and his son, Evhen, were accomplished architects in the city of Lviv. The elder Nahirny began designing churches in the 1880s.  He drew up plans for around 200 Ukrainian Greek Catholic churches ...  CLICK TO READ MORE


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