Buzina’s last interview: My position is inconvenient to the current government
Only two days ago, on Monday, April 13, journalist and writer Oles Buzina, gave an interview to Radio Vesti.
Regarding his departure from ‘Segodnya’ [Ukrainian newspaper –ed.]: “I left for a very simple reason. I had no interest in being a scapegoat… I had requested to be relieved of managerial responsibility for the website version of Segodnya. Why should I have to take responsibility for Sveta Panyushkina’s sins? Material was being penned whose publication I did not agree with. This material was coming ‘from above’. Above me was the general director, Potapov. I told him—I will not publish this material. “No, you have to publish it,” he said. It was then that I told him I was resigning.”
Regarding the film director, Oleg Sentsov: “Just before the interview you told me that we would be discussing Oleg Sentsov. I asked you who this was. This was an absolutely sincere question… Let’s be clear—he became famous after he was locked up in Lefortovo Prison [notorious Moscow prison –ed.]. …But if you want my opinion, I would immediately release Sentsov. I’d also immediately release Savchenko.”
Regarding relations with Russia: “I support the idea that relations between Russia and the Ukraine should become most comfortable and friendly. There is no getting away from one another… Why did a conflict arise between Russia and the West on the territory of Ukraine? For a long time the West has been strengthening its position in the Ukraine. Money was being funnelled into grant-consuming organizations, as well as to pro-Western lobby groups… The ‘real’ Ukraine is in large measure dependent on economic ties with Russia.”
Regarding the Maidan events: “With respect to the pro-Western course that the Ukraine chose after the coup on the Maidan… Well, let’s call a spade a spade. There was a coup d’état. After that, it was legalized, they did everything, anything they wanted, to make it look decent, Yanukovich’s flight… The fact that there was a coup is, hugely the fault of Yanukovich, who failed to perform his duties as President.”
How to change the relationship with the Russian Federation: “For this to happen, we must acknowledge that we made a mistake; that’s all, the whole country, we made a mistake.”
Regarding the gas conflict: “Well, who forced Yulya Timoshenko to conclude this agreement? Timoshenko, who always talked of a pro-Western course for the Ukraine, signed this agreement. This contract was a general surrender of the Ukraine’s positions.”
About Putin: “When the country is governed by thieves from within, it is very easy to blame Putin. Whatever happens—Putin is to blame.”
Regarding his appearances on Russian TV: ” You’re exaggerating when you say that you see me every week on two or three Russian TV shows. That’s not true. I did not appear on any talk shows in January or February. In the second half of March I was on that talk show. Then last week, I was in St. Petersburg, where I participated in a talk show. Why do I participate in Russian talk shows? Because for me this is the only opportunity to express my views. On Russian talk shows I always say that I support a united Ukraine. For instance, once there was a situation where one of the talk show guests said that the Ukraine as a state does not exist, at which point I took out my Ukrainian passport and said—‘look, the Ukraine does exist as a state.’ Not only Oles Buzina thinks this way, but also forty million Ukrainian citizens. The Ukraine as a state exists and this must be taken into account… Another reason why I go there—because I was banned in Ukraine.”
Regarding the war in the Donbass: “They are shelling civilians in towns instead of fighting terrorists… That’s the thing. My position is inconvenient to the current authorities in Ukraine.”
Earlier today, it was reported that Oles Buzina was killed in Kiev.