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06KIEV471, UKRAINE: MOROSE MOROZ: SOCIALIST LEADER UNHAPPY

February 3, 2006

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
06KIEV471 2006-02-03 12:08 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Kyiv
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

 

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 KIEV 000471 

SIPDIS 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 02/03/2016 
TAGS: PGOV
SUBJECT: UKRAINE: MOROSE MOROZ: SOCIALIST LEADER UNHAPPY 
OVER GAS DEAL, YUSHCHENKO, TYMOSHENKO 

REF: KIEV 367 

Classified By: Political Counselor Aubrey Carlson, reason 1.4 (b,d) 

1. (C) Summary:  Socialist Party Leader Olexander Moroz 
vented frustration with the gas deal with Russia, President 
Yushchenko, ex-PM Yuliya Tymoshenko, and a perceived lack of 
recent U.S. attention to the Socialist Party February 1 to 
Bruce Jackson, President, Project for Transitional 
Democracies and poloff.  Moroz said he was being hammered on 
the campaign trail for still being "with the President." 
While Yushchenko defended a gas deal perceived to be against 
Ukrainian interests; political allies had scant talking 
points to defend the Government of Ukraine's (GOU) position 
to skeptical voters.  Moroz suggested the Socialist Party 
painted a more balanced picture of developments in Ukraine 
than did other political forces, and asked that U.S. 
interlocutors encourage Tymoshenko to be more of a team 
player.  End summary. 

Emotional Moroz blasts gas deal 
------------------------------- 

2. (C) A clearly unhappy Socialist Party (SPU) leader 
Oleksandr Moroz blasted the GOU handling of the gas crisis 
and the resulting deals with Russia, said he was appalled at 
the GOU decisions taken, and emphasized that Ukraine had 
other options, even though filing an appeal at the Stockholm 
Court of Arbitration would have taken too much time in the 
dead of a cold winter.  Moroz expressed particular irritation 
at President Yushchenko's constant public statements that 
everything was okay with the deal when it seemed clear that 
the deal hurt Ukrainian national interests.  Moroz expressed 
sadness as well, because the handling of the contracts 
clearly signaled that those who had signed off on the deal 
had their personal interests in mind.  Moroz could not fathom 
why Yushchenko had said Ukraine had won, when it seemed clear 
that Russia had stuck to its position and Ukraine had given 
in. 

3. (C) Moroz sought suggestions about how to neutralize a bad 
situation.  Jackson offered two pieces of advice for anyone 
in trouble:  seek experienced legal counsel, and talk to your 
friends and allies, explaining honestly what had happened. 
Jackson stressed that the January 4 MOU appeared to threaten 
overall European interests, not just Ukraine's.  Moroz 
complained that Europeans seemed too afraid of their own 
equities and vulnerabilities vis-a-vis Russia to stand up and 
initiate a frank dialogue with Moscow; they offered moral 
support to Ukraine but would do nothing.  Moroz would be in 
Brussels February 7-8 for a conference of European Socialist 
and Social Democratic parties; although he had been invited 
to brief them on the political situation in Ukraine, he 
expected Russia and the gas deal to dominate the 
conversation.  (Note:  The SPU became a full member of the 
Socialist International January 31 after ten years of 
participation, the last four as an associate member.) 

Gas deal and loyalty to Yushchenko hurt on the stump 
--------------------------------------------- ------- 

4. (C) Apologizing for sounding emotional, Moroz explained 
that he had just come from yet another meeting in which he 
had been hammered over the gas deal and the Socialists' 
support of it, via support of Yushchenko and the government. 
Moroz said that criticism of the deal and support of the GOU 
position had dominated public reaction at his recent campaign 
appearances, and he predicted the Socialist Party would pay a 
price on election day, particularly in eastern Ukraine.   "By 
signing a bad deal, the government has given a trump card to 
our opponents," he lamented.  There were few talking points 
to defend the deal, beyond a switch to cash payments and a 
modestly higher transit fee, neither of which had much affect 
on the average voter. 

5. (C) Moroz asked if U.S. interlocutors could influence 
Tymoshenko to tone down her criticism of the deal and of 
Yushchenko.  He accused her of fueling the sense of scandal 
to further her personal ambitions and added, "she is 
destroying the Maidan coalition."  (Note:  Moroz and his 
party supported Yushchenko in the second and repeat rounds of 
the 2004 presidential election, and were a constant Maidan 
presence, but he maintains publicly that he was never part of 
the Orange Yushchenko-Tymoshenko team.  A desire to defeat 
the Kuchma-backed candidate was the prime motivation, but 
Moroz also sought, and received, from the Orange alliance a 
promise to support constitutional reform as well as a few 
ministerial slots for his party cohort.  Moroz continues to 
preserve his and his party's quasi-independence, despite 
their participation in government, by running separately in 
the March 2006 parliamentary elections.  On February 1, he 
rejected the recent Our Ukraine-proposed coalition pact 
(reftel), but left open the possibility of cooperating after 
the elections.) 
Socialists can provide fuller picture 
------------------------------------- 

6. (C) Moroz offered that he and his party leadership could 
provide U.S interlocutors a full understanding of the 
dynamics in Ukraine.  Note:  Socialist Minister of Interior 
Yuri Lutsenko will be in Washington for meetings with U.S. 
officials February 8-9. 

7. (U) Visit Embassy Kiev's classified website at: 
www.state.sgov.gov/p/eur/kiev. 
HERBST

 

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