Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Ukraine envoy needed

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Gwynne Dyer's article Yanukovych risks second Cold War (Jan. 23) is correct in its description of the current crisis between the government and the protesters in Ukraine.

However, when Dyer said "Viktor Yanukovych, for all his faults, is the legitimately elected president of Ukraine, and he has a majority in parliament," the word "legitimate" can be challenged.

Ever since Yanukovych was democratically elected in 2010, he has been playing with the rules, not by the rules, including his current support for the police who are attacking, kidnapping, torturing and killing protesters.

Canadian politicians have issued strong statements condemning violence in Ukraine, but now it's time to act swiftly. While the eyes of the world leaders are now on Syria, more needs to be done in Ukraine to avoid a similar full scale civil war.

Talks between the president and the opposition leaders have failed. Canada and its allies need to appoint a special envoy who can negotiate a way out of this dangerous situation before more people die.

Canada is home to over one million Ukrainian-Canadians, who have helped build a strong economy here. It's now Canada's time to help Ukrainian protesters to find a peaceful solution in their homeland.

DENYS VOLKOV

Winnipeg

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition January 25, 2014 A16

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