Ukrainian PM pledges more powers for regions

Ukrainian PM pledges more powers for regions
# 11 April 2014 21:08 (UTC +04:00)

Baku-APA. Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseny Yatsenyuk on Friday pledged to grant more powers to the regions in line with demands of pro-Russian activists in the country's east, APA reports quoting Xinhua.

"We consider it necessary to hand over more authority to the relevant local governments," Yatsenyuk said during his visit to the crisis-hit eastern Donetsk region.

Kiev was ready to increase the authority of local communities by transferring economic, financial and administrative powers to the regional governments, Yatsenyuk said.

He expressed the hope that decentralization would attract investment and generate additional revenue for local budgets, thus creating new jobs and improving the well-being of the general public.

Yatsenyuk promised to maintain the status of Russian as the regional language in the Russian-speaking areas, and pledged to intensify efforts to protect the rights of national minorities across Ukraine.

He also committed to adopt a law on local referendums, which would allow greater autonomy in the regions.

At the same time, Yatsenyuk ruled out federalization of the state, saying Ukraine would remain a united and unified country.

Moscow has demanded Ukraine become a federation and make Russian the second official language across the country, saying it would guarantee the interests of all regions.

A new wave of unrest erupted in Ukraine last weekend, when pro-Moscow activists seized several government buildings in the eastern cities of Donetsk, Lugansk and Kharkov, demanding a referendum on autonomy and closer ties with Russia.

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