Kuchma: federalization will lead to disintegration of Ukraine
Leonid Kuchma, the second president of Ukraine (who was president of Ukraine in 1994-2005), said calls for the federalization of Ukraine are aimed at a "creeping" dismantling of the country.
"When Moscow calls for Ukraine to be turned into a federation, it is quite obvious that the goal here is not wellbeing, not the interests of our people, but building a foundation for the disintegration of Ukraine, for turning it into an incapable, amorphous state. Indeed, federalization of Ukraine is the first step towards the implementation of this scenario," Kuchma said in a new edition of the book entitled Ukraine is not Russia, an abstract of which was published in the newspaper Golos Ukrainy on Friday.
Kuchma said he is convinced that national identity is the cornerstone of the survival of any country, let alone Ukraine, which has regained its independence after being part of an empire for more than 300 years.
"We need to form and strengthen the Ukrainian civil nation. All our citizens, in Luhansk or Lviv, should consider themselves Ukrainians, and then they can call themselves 'Zapadentsy,' 'Donetsk,' 'Europeans,' 'white people,' 'terrestrials,' even elves. Our task is to save and build a united prospering Ukraine. For this reason, federalization is not for us," Kuchma said.