“National aspirations must be respected; people may now be dominated and governed only by their own consent. Self determination is not a mere phrase; it is an imperative principle of action.”
The goal is to bring Galicia back to Europe
European Galician Assembly, which is suspected of separatism, brisked up its work in Lvov. Its activists held a conference at which the Mayor Andrey Sadovoy and former economic development minister Pavel Sheremeta were noticed as guests.
The Galician Assembly includes local intellectuals who have never hidden their separatist views (recently they have registered Ukrainian Galician party). The leader of the organization is Vładimir Pavliv who, even before the war in the east, became famous as “a Galician autonomist”. In his opinion, the change of the administrative-territorial format of the state is not far off.
“I am interested in the autonomous status of Western Ukraine or single Galicia, and what there will be over the Zbruch River is not of interest to me,”—he admitted in an interview two years ago.—“The integrity of Ukraine for me has lower value than the welfare of Galicia”.
Another leader of the Galician Assembly—a writer Taras Prokhasko called Donbass “a gangrene of the Ukrainian state”. However, currently the “Galician separatists” do not speak in public about the Western region’s separation, and they officially state Galicia’s development and European integration as the goal of the organization. However, activists of the Assembly are hinting that they are not averse to enter the EU without Ukraine.
“We need to unite, at least three regions—Lvov, Ternopol and Ivano-Frankovsk. The goal of our organization is to bring Galicia back to Europe, because that is the area which is most ready to European integration,”—said Pavliv during recent opening of their Ternopol cell. He also does not mind joining the Transcarpathia and Bukovina to their initiative.
An expert Taras Glivinsky believes that the Galician party is being formed towards the local elections: “Their token will be a promise of EU membership, and in case the economy collapses because of the war in the east, they will start talking about the separation”.