18:12 Nov. 20, 2016
President addressed the people on Dignity and Freedom Day, marking third anniversary of Euromaidan
Petro Poroshenko addressed the Ukrainian people on the occasion of the Day of dignity and freedom, President's press service reports.
"Three years ago, hundreds of brave young men and women without any politicians gathered at Euromaidan to peacefully protest against the Yanukovych regime which stole their great European dream. Brutal beating of young people by ‘Berkut' stirred up the whole country. Millions of Ukrainians took to the streets. They came to thwart a plan to transform Ukraine into the ‘Little Russian' corner of Russian Empire," president recalled.
"After the victory over the regime, it occurred that the entire state machinery is nothing but a rotten steering wheel. Ukraine was choked seemingly inevitable default. The economy has not recovered from the global crisis. Russia has not only started a war, but also makes a real trade blockade, which caused losses in hundreds of billions. Army and security services were virtually non-existent. This is the depth, from which we started to climb," Poroshenko said.
"To avoid economical default and disaster, the government had no choice but to resort to tough measures - the same standard steps that our neighbors in Central and Eastern Europe have successfully carried out in the early 90's. The support of the International Monetary Fund was critically important for us. Though, IMF never subscribes sweet medication. Thus, I understand that we can not help hurting millions of families. No shame in apologizing for that," the president explained.
He also pointed on some gains: "This year, we abandoned regular mobilization waves and signed up professional contract soldiers from tens of thousands of volunteers... After fourteen quarters of fall, which began a year before the revolution and the war, the economy finally started growing again."
"But It does not take much effort to make all this come to naught. The enemy does not only attack Ukraine from the outside, but also undermines us from within The aim of the Kremlin is the constant internal destabilization, anarchy, warlordism, in the end returning Ukraine to the imperial stall… At the same time, I ask you not to label all mass actions participants indiscriminately. It is clear that people have reasons for dissatisfaction and every free citizen in a free Ukraine has the inherent right to protest," Poroshenko stressed.
He mention the drastic topic of visa regime with EU: "We have implemented 144 articles of plan for visa liberalization, completing a number of extremely important reforms. This week, the EU Council unanimously adopted a resolution that recognizes the full implementation of all obligations by Ukraine."
"Sometimes I ask myself: could I avoid mistakes? Folk wisdom of many nations says: the only man who never makes a mistake is the man who never does anything." - the president said.
"The horizon is seen little better from upon high. We're facing many more problems, and I'm not going to embellish reality. But I have clear vision that the most difficult problems we have experienced already and everything will be all right – if we don't allow some politicians to roll away the results achieved at such a high price," Poroshenko assured.
The Dignity and Freedom Day is celebrated in Ukraine every year on November 21. On that day Ukrainians mark anniversaries of the Orange Revolution and Revolution of Dignity.