Ukraine’s Ministry of Justice has approved the legal registration of the Slavic Party (SP). Founded recently as a successor to the Civic Congress of Ukraine, the Slavic Party shifts the emphasis from human rights slogans to an overt political goal: unifying Ukraine with Russia and Belarus into an “East Slavic community of states” and “Slavic geopolitical system.”
The SP’s program refers to Russians and Ukrainians as “two parts of a single people.” Recognizing that Russian and Ukrainian are distinct languages, it calls for enshrining Russian as a “state language” in Ukraine on a par with the Ukrainian language. The SP “will counterpose Slavic patriotism to Russophobia and to the Western orientation of Ukrainian nationalists; and will defend the Slavic cultural space against aggressive Western corruption of culture.” SP founders, like their Civic Congress predecessors, look for support mainly in the russified industrial centers of eastern Ukraine. (Ukrainian agencies, August 30)
BALGIMBAEV AND NAZARBAEV SEEK TO REASSURE FOREIGN INVESTORS.