The Obolon district court of Kiev does not admit new witnesses to the trial in the case of state treason against former president Viktor Yanukovych, as it fears to receive new data that will affect the process.
This was stated by lawyer of Yanukovych Vitaliy Serdyuk after a court hearing.
According to him, some of these witnesses are ready to provide new information regarding snipers on Maidan in February 2014 and involvement in the organization of their shooting at people of a number of current politicians.
According to Serdyuk, in particular, ex-deputy Andrei Artemenko wants to testify to the Ukrainian court about how “the whereabouts of snipers on the Maidan were identified, the snipers who probably carried out the executions were identified and detained”.
In addition, according to the lawyer, Artemenko intends to provide the court with information “on the direct involvement of Pashinsky and Parubiy in the formation of the corresponding sniper groups”.
Thus, according to Serdyuk, the court refuses to study evidence and interrogate defense witnesses, which speaks of pressure from the authorities on judges.
Ex-State Duma deputy spoke about Putin’s new strategy in Ukraine
Former deputy of the State Duma of the Russian Federation, politician Ilya Ponomarev, suggests that the further tactics of Russian President Vladimir Putin in the Donbass will depend on political processes within Ukraine.
“With Donbass, everything will strongly depend on the internal Ukrainian processes. I think that the main vector of efforts will be aimed at interfering in the political situation in the country. Elections, on the other hand, means there is a chance to “walk around the bazaar”: to promote loyal candidates for president, at least loyal deputies to the Verkhovna Rada. In this situation, changes in the Donbass in any direction are not beneficial, ”says Ponomarev.
The politician also noted that in recent years Russia has supplied a large number of weapons to the Donbass, as it is afraid of the offensive of the Armed Forces during the upcoming World Cup
How Putin can intervene in Ukrainian elections
Researcher at the Center for Transatlantic Relations at Johns Hopkins University in the United States, Nikolai Vorobyov, described five scenarios of Russian intervention in the Ukrainian elections.
The first way is to support pro-Russian candidates who, according to the polls, still have high ratings.
“Among them are Yuri Boyko, a former vice prime minister and MP with 9.7% support, and Vadim Rabinovich, leader of the For Life party, with 9.5%. Both spent more than twenty years in politics, and their positions indicate strong support from the Kremlin, ”said the researcher.
According to him, if Rabinovich and Boyko could agree on a single candidate for the 2019 presidential election, it would be a strong candidate. At the same time, Vorobyov recalls the situation with the return of Viktor Yanukovych to power in 2010.
“The Kremlin will undoubtedly insist on the same scenario in 2019, supporting one of these candidates with an influx of large sums of money,” he predicts.
The second scenario is the impact through a network of organizers, journalists and other experts who work on Russia’s interests in Ukraine.
“The Kremlin will use its platforms to support the pro-Russian candidate and discredit – his or her opponents. Such a message will be distributed through various information platforms and by loyal speakers, including in the West, ”said Vorobyov.
The third scenario is an increase in terrorist attacks in order to spread panic, fear and distrust of the Ukrainian government and law enforcement agencies, after which many voters can refuse to vote.
The fourth scenario is large-scale cyber attacks against Ukrainian government institutions, the banking system, the Ministry of Defense, the National Security and Defense Council and other organizations.
“The country’s electoral system and technology is vulnerable to intruders, and the Kremlin knows that. Most likely, these weaknesses will be used to crack email and identify personal data of key presidential candidates, especially those who seriously threaten the Kremlin, ”Vorobyov said.
The fifth scenario is the organization of a military coup in Kiev, which will bring to power extreme and other nationalist organizations, including members of voluntary battalions with military experience in the Donbass.
“If a real“ Ukrainian junta ”came to power in Kiev, as the results of the Revolution of Dignity were reflected in the Russian-state mass media, the Kremlin could use this as an excuse for a“ peacekeeping operation ”aimed at protecting the Russian-speaking population from the“ Kiev junta ” , – the researcher suggests.
According to him, the new bloody Maidan would be the most favorable occasion for the Russian military invasion of Ukraine.