While speaking at the first meeting of the Constitutional Commission of Ukraine on Monday, the county’s President Petro Poroshenko said that there was nothing more important for them than a new reformed constitution. He specified that the reforms concerned decentralization, justice, human rights and national language.
Poroshenko urged the commission to be open and invited non-coalition forces to join its work. “The parliament has a key role in the constitutional process. So, we hope that the commission will become a uniting platform for all political forces,” the Ukrainian president said.
He said that the new Ukrainian constitution had to comply with the European laws.
As far as federalization is concerned, Poroshenko said that he was ready to put that question to a referendum if the commission deemed that necessary. “But all surveys have shown that the Ukrainians do not want their country to be a federation,” Poroshenko said.
He noted that decentralization had nothing to do with federalization. “Ukraine has been, is and hopefully will be a unitary state. Federalization is like an infection, a chemical weapon some external forces are trying to impose on us,” Poroshenko said.
“Until recently our society was divided into two halves: one half advocated one national language, the other two. Today, we are unanimous. As many as 3/4 of our people want Ukrainian to be their only national language,” the Ukrainian president said.
He suggested toughening responsibility for separatism. “We must be tougher in punishing separatism so as today we are paying a high price for this,” Poroshenko said.