The Controversy Surrounding the Ukrainian Elections

烏克蘭大選爭議 凸顯地緣政經角力----歐俄之間 既競爭又合作


Hung, Mei- Lan,

Associate Professor, Graduate Institute of Russian Studies,

National Chengchi University

洪美蘭

國立政治大學俄羅斯研究所副教授



Ukraine held a presidential election at the end of last October. The election was closely followed from the beginning by Russia, the United States and the European Union. The controversy that ensued after the announcement of the results by the Ukrainian Central Election Commission then became the focal point of the entire world. The reason why the election results garnered so much attention from the international community was not only due to their influence on Ukraine’s future development directions, but also with the fact that they would affect EU-Russia relations after the EU’s expansion. Furthermore, the results would have an affect on the way the EU and Russia interacted with the rest of the world.

去年十月底烏克蘭舉行總統大選。從競選期間開始,俄羅斯、美國和歐盟等強權即密切關注選情發展。烏克蘭中央選舉委員會公告大選結果後所引發之爭議,更成為全球焦點。國際社會對此次大選之所以如此重視,實歸因於其結果不僅攸關烏克蘭未來國家發展走向,亦將影響到歐盟擴大後歐俄雙方在歐洲之佈局,進而牽動歐盟與俄羅斯間之互動關係與國際局勢。

The controversy that surrounded the election served to ignite a politic and economic crisis between the eastern and western parts of the country. There were also differences of opinion expressed by the United States, EU and Russia over the election results announced by Ukraine’s Central Election Commission. The reasons for these disparities can be analyzed from the perspective of the internal circumstances in Ukraine as well as from the competition between the EU and Russia.

此次選舉爭議,除了引發烏國境內東西部對峙之政經危機,亦使得美國、歐盟與俄羅斯因為對該國中選會所公布之結果抱持不同態度,而意見分歧。究其原因,可從烏克蘭內部情勢和歐俄之競爭兩方面來分析。

The Difference between the Eastern and Western Parts of Ukraine

烏克蘭東西部的矛盾

Let’s begin with the current circumstances within Ukraine. In the year 988, the Grand Duke of Kiev Vladirmir established the Greek Orthodox Church as the state religion, establishing the capital, Kiev, as the originating point of the Slavic people. In 1221, however, the Mongols invaded and captured the eastern part of the nation. The small, independent nation left in the west became submerged as part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Finally the west was brought under the domain of the Poland-Lithuania kingdom and forced to change to Catholicism, which planted the seeds of the cultural and religious disparities between the eastern and western parts of Ukraine. It wasn’t until the latter part of the 18th century that the western part of Ukraine was made part of Russia. It was thus because the two parts of the country were under different regimes throughout history that they developed different religious and cultural ways of thinking, which has been the source of the disparate political models the two sides embraced in this past election.

首先,就烏克蘭內部情勢而言。儘管西元九八八年基輔羅斯大公弗拉基米爾定希臘正教為國教,奠定了烏克蘭首都基輔成為斯拉夫民族發源地之地位。不過,西元一二二一年蒙古入侵,佔領現今烏克蘭東部地區,而西部獨立小邦國後來則淪為奧匈帝國的一部份,最終為波蘭立陶宛王國所統治,並被迫改信天主教,種下了東西部在文化信仰上分歧之因。直至十八世紀末期西烏克蘭才又被沙俄納入。故烏克蘭東西部在歷史上曾因分屬不同政權,使其宗教、文化和思維方式歧異,乃是肇致此次大選東西部各擁其主之根源。

Nevertheless, economic factors were probably the biggest reason for fueling the controversy of the past poll results. In the past, Ukraine’s economy was closely linked with the Soviet Union’s under a specialized division of labor framework. This was especially true in the east where heavy industry prevailed. After Ukraine declared independence in 1991, the nation sought to gain economic autonomy and broke off from its traditional economic dependence with the Soviet Union. Ukraine gradually not only forfeited its easy access to the Soviet market, but also saw the USSR exert pressure on its economy by reducing the supply of resources such as oil and natural gas that Ukraine needed to keep its economy up and running. Even though Ukraine was attempting to implement market oriented economic transformation and European oriented economic-trade policy at the time through the help of aid from western countries, its products were still hard pressed to meet the demands of the international market, which sent its economy into drastic decline. The grim economic conditions led many eastern Ukrainians to believe that it was necessary restore and strengthen relations with Russia.

然而,經濟因素卻是導致此次選舉爭議之重要緣由與導火線。由於過去在蘇聯「專業分工」的架構下,烏克蘭與俄羅斯經濟關係密切,特別是重工業林立的東半部。不過,一九九一年烏克蘭獨立之初,尋求經濟自主,中斷與原蘇聯國家之傳統經濟聯繫,不但逐漸喪失原蘇聯市場,又招致俄羅斯對其施加經濟壓力,減少供應其經濟運轉最需要之石油、天然氣等能源。雖然同期在西方的經援下實施市場導向經濟轉型與歐洲導向經貿政策,但是當時其產品難以符合國際市場需求,終致其經濟大幅衰退。嚴峻的經濟形勢使東部烏克蘭人認為,恢復和強化與俄羅斯之關係是必要的。

Nevertheless, economic and trade ties between Ukraine and the EU continue to deepen. The EU provides Ukraine with a Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) as well as a Partnership and Co-operation Agreement (PCA) that took effect in 1998. According to EU statistics, trade amount between Ukraine and the twenty five nations of the EU after its eastward expansion topped 14.5 billion Euros or 35% of its overall trade with the outside world. The EU has already replaced Russia as Ukraine’s most important trading partner, which has led to the people in the west of Ukraine to call for deepening relations with the EU; even going as far as saying the country should apply for EU membership. It is easy to see that the eastern and western parts of Ukraine have diametrically different opinions concerning the future development of the nation’s economy.

然而,烏克蘭與歐盟之經貿關係亦日漸深厚。除了歐盟提供一般優惠待遇外,雙邊的合作夥伴協定亦於一九九八年生效。依據歐盟之統計數據顯示,二○○三年烏克蘭與東擴後的二十五個歐盟國家之貿易量高達一四五億歐元,佔其對外總貿易額之三五%,歐盟已取代俄羅斯成為烏克蘭最重要的貿易夥伴。故西部烏克蘭人主張繼續深化與歐盟之關係,甚至申請加入歐盟。因此,由上述可見,烏國東西部對其國家未來經濟發展之意見南轅北轍。

Russia’s Role

俄羅斯的角色

Next we should talk about the points of contention between Russia and Europe. European countries value human rights; they feel that pushing the values of democracy and freedom throughout the world can maintain stability in Europe as well as the rest of the globe and be a foundation for developing peace. After the end of the Cold War, the EU pushed these values on the former Soviet Union and the other East Bloc nations previously under its realm of influence. In Russia, the task to stabilize the domestic political and economic situation was more pressing for President Vladmir Putin than it was during Boris Yelstin’s term of office, which may be why Putin chose to uphold a stricter more hard nose leadership style. Putin’s use of presidential powers to control the media and weaken opposition, however, is something Brussels finds hard to accept, as the EU sees the possible reemergence of the Russian tradition of dictatorship and imperialism. Russia though has been gradually losing its influence with traditional alliances due to the eastward push by the EU as well as incurring substantial economic loss through the reduction of bilateral trade agreements. This has led to a tense, post Cold War atmosphere in what the EU terms the “common neighborhood” and Russia considers its “near abroad.” One nation in the midst of this atmosphere is Ukraine, which shares a common border with Russia and is home to a Black Sea port that is key to Russia’s maritime strategies. The port is currently Russia’s main economic growth lifeline, as it is an important launching port for Russian energy exports to Central Asia and Europe. For Russia, its geopolitical and economic significance goes without saying. Moscow is worried that, although in the short term it can still count on Ukraine to help get its energy exports out, once EU-Ukrainian relations become even closer, they may lose access to the Black Sea port as well as the possibility of heightened energy source strategy contention. Moreover, on May 1st of last year, the EU completed its new eastern boundaries. The biggest country now boarding the EU is Ukraine, which makes it an even more important buffer area between Russian and Europe.

其次,就歐俄競爭關係而言。歐洲國家重視人權,認為民主自由為普世及歐洲的價值,亦是維持歐洲與世界穩定、和平發展之基石。在冷戰結束後,歐盟積極地將此價值觀推展至原蘇聯國家及其附屬區。然而,俄羅斯在普欽(Vladmir Putin)政府的強勢領導下,其國內政經情況相對於西方指導時的葉爾欽時代要來得穩定,形成俄國國內崇尚此種領導風格。但是普丁之作風,譬如:利用總統權力對媒體進行整頓進而操控媒體;選舉弊端頻傳;反對派積弱不振等,卻令布魯塞爾無法茍同,因而擔心俄羅斯之獨裁與帝國主義傳統復活。反觀,俄羅斯在面臨歐盟東擴並獲得具體成效後,不但逐漸失去其對傳統盟邦之影響力,甚至在經濟上亦蒙受實質經濟損失,例如雙邊貿易量大幅縮減等等。因此,後冷戰時期歐俄雙方在歐盟所說的,與俄羅斯的「共同鄰近地區」,也就是俄羅斯所謂其「境外附近」形成一種相互較勁與競爭之氛圍。其中,烏克蘭右境與俄國直接接壤,並擁有影響俄國海洋戰略之黑海出口,以及俄國目前經濟成長主要動力 — 能源出口中輸往中亞或歐洲之管線,對俄羅斯而言,其地緣政經意義不言而喻。故莫斯科擔心,雖然俄國在短期間內仍可繼續以能源供應作為拉攏烏克蘭之策略,可是當烏克蘭與歐盟關係更加深厚,以及歐俄雙方互信基礎仍脆弱之際,損及其海洋、能源戰略的可能性亦將升高。再者,今年五月一日歐盟完成首批東擴後其東部新邊界接鄰的最大國家即是烏克蘭,此更大大地提升了烏克蘭作為歐俄戰略安全緩衝之地緣角色。

The two presidential candidates in the past Ukrainian election obviously held different political views. The two candidates differed in their leaning toward the EU and Russia, which tended to complicate the election and turn it into a battle for strengthening political and economic supremacy in the region.

因此,此次大選兩位候選人政見傾向之差異顯然與俄國和歐盟之政經戰略利益衝突不謀而合,使得大選變得複雜化,並再次成為雙方為了強化其地緣政治和地緣經濟優勢之角力戰。

EU-Russian Opposition and Cooperation

歐俄的對立與合作

Even though Russia and the EU were hoping for different results in the Ukrainian elections that would serve their own self interest, since the end of the Cold War, the two sides have actually established closer economic ties. For example, Russia still needs foreign capital assistance from Europe and the US in a bid to resurrect its economy and stabilize development. According to Russian customs’ statistical data, trade with the EU stood at 36.1% of that with the rest of the outside world in 2003, making the EU Russia’s current largest trading partner. Furthermore, Russia is the EU’s main source of oil and natural gas in line with its diversification policy on the importation of energy sources. The two sides have gone as far as to discuss four “common spaces” during a high level summit in Rome last November. The four areas of cooperation under consideration include economics, judicial, humanitarian and internal security, education and research and external security. In view of economic growth, Russia has attempted to seek a common ground with the EU regarding the Ukraine issue. This is very evident in the change in stance Russia has taken on the Ukrainian election results. Russia initially supported the use of force by the Ukrainian government to quell demonstrations against the results and staunchly insisted that the November 21st election was fair. Recently, however, Russia has softened its stance, even saying it could accept reelections.

儘管歐俄因各自利益而在烏克蘭大選之立場上顯得針鋒相對。不過,自從冷戰結束後,雙方亦建立起緊密的經濟合作關係,譬如:俄國在追求經濟復甦、穩定與發展之過程中仍須歐美外資之助益;依據俄羅斯海關統計數據顯示,二○○三年俄國對歐貿易占其對外貿易總額之三六‧一%,歐盟已成為俄羅斯目前第一大貿易夥伴,而歐盟亦視俄羅斯之石油與天然氣供應為其能源進口多元化政策的主要來源之一;雙方甚至於去年十一月的羅馬高峰會上已討論到建立四個「共同空間」:經濟、司法及人道與內部安全、教育及研究、外部安全。因此,基於經濟發展之考量,俄國試圖在烏克蘭議題上與歐盟找尋共同點。從大選初期支持烏克蘭政府武力鎮壓示威者,並堅持十一月二十一日總統決選是公平有效的立場,到最後態度軟化,改而表示可接受重新選舉,並表明無論誰當選都將繼續與之合作,這些讓步,皆可證明之。

Intervention to Ease Tensions

強權介入紓緩緊張情勢

Even though the main objective of the EU’s push eastward is to spur economic growth and strengthen the importance and influence of its entire economy in the international arena, there are still has no plans in the short term to include Ukraine in EU. In other words, the economic aid and strengthening of ties with Ukraine is still an attempt to keep Russia in check. In its current stage of expansion, the EU still sees Ukraine as a key regional and global security ally, with diplomacy motivations presently surpassing economic interests. Consequently, the EU of course does not wish to have its relations deteriorate with Russia because of the Ukrainian elections, which would also aversely affect their respective economic interests and somewhat cordial ties. The EU would also not be happy to see Ukraine break into upheaval over the election controversy, which would damage European peace and stability as well. Consequently EU officials have been dispatched to Ukraine in order to help with negotiations in hopes to help avoid a split between the eastern and western parts of the nation. The tensions in Ukraine have thus eased a bit due to the intervention of a global power. Finally, with the eyes of the world fixed upon Ukraine as well as the supervision of 12,000 international election observers, the country underwent reelections on December 26th, 2004. The winner this time was west-leaning Viktor Yushchenko, seemingly ending the Ukrainian election controversy. In point of fact, however, key controversial issues have yet to be resolved as the newly elected president begins his arduous mission. One major task will be to work with financial groups and political powers in the eastern part of the country in bringing about more comprehensive and effective economic reforms. This is especially important regarding economic policy, as it has to reconcile the different opinions between east and west on economic development in order to sustain national unity and continued growth. On the diplomatic front, the new administration must find a way to cooperate more with western countries in order to obtain proper aid packages to strengthen Ukraine’s market economy while simultaneously assuring Russia that the country is not becoming too westernized, which would put a strain on their relations. How these issues play out will also affect future Russia-EU relations.

同理,雖然歐盟東擴的主要目的之一,乃是在於刺激歐盟經濟再成長與強化歐盟這個區域經濟整合體在國際經濟市場中之重要性與影響力。但是短期間內歐盟並未規劃將烏克蘭納入歐盟。換言之,經援及強化與烏國之關係乃是著眼於牽制俄國。歐盟現階段僅將烏克蘭視為區域及全球安全之關鍵鄰國,政治外交動機高過於經濟利益。因此,歐盟當然不希望歐俄雙方因大選爭執持續惡化而影響彼此的經濟利益與和諧關係,更不樂見烏國因大選爭議而分裂或爆發內戰,破壞歐洲之和平與穩定。故積極派員赴烏協商,欲緩解烏克蘭境內東西部因勢均力敵而僵持不下之分歧,而烏國之緊張局勢亦因為強權之介入斡旋而稍見紓緩。最後在舉世注目與1萬2千名國際選舉觀察員的監視下,於12月26日舉行重新選舉。儘管,親西方的尤申科獲得最終的勝選,大選爭議似乎和平落幕。但是,事實上,爭議的關鍵議題並未解決,新任總統的艱鉅任務才剛開始。對內方面,未來如何與東部財閥和政治勢力互動下深化經改,以有效的施政,特別是經濟政策,來化解東西部選民對國家經濟發展之歧見,維持國家統一和經濟復甦成長;而在對外方面,如何持續與西方合作,以達確實爭取到西方經援,強化其市場經濟之目的的同時又能避免俄國憂心其西化而引來施壓,影響俄烏關係。而這些議題的發展亦將牽動著歐俄未來之互動關係。因此,烏克蘭大選所引發的各項問題,仍有待各界努力。

In summation, the Ukrainian elections not only exposed to the world the differences between the eastern and western parts of the country, they also brought to light the paradoxical relationship involving both cooperation and competition between Russia and the EU in the post Cold War era. On the surface it seems that the election results show a victory of western democratic values over Russian might. In actuality, the results reflect the most pressing desire for the people living in the post-socialist countries----pursuing freedom and a better standard of living. Economic factors will determine whether or not Ukraine can maintain its unity, while possibly providing the basis for the deepening of cooperation between Russia and the EU, which could put an end to the diplomatic contention and mutual distrust between the two powers. As basis for political and diplomatic interaction between the EU and Russia is presently still weak however, it may be hard in the short term to break through any bottlenecks in the region. It remains to be seen whether or not mutually beneficial economic cooperation between the EU and Russia can help end diplomatic contention, but we should have reason for optimism after seeing the how the Ukrainian elections played out.

總結可見,此次烏克蘭總統大選不僅凸顯出烏克蘭東西部之差異,更顯示出後冷戰時期歐俄既合作又競爭之矛盾關係。而大選爭議的結果,表面上印證了西方民主價值的勝利和俄國之勢微,但事實上卻是再次反映了後社會主義國家人民當前最迫切之心聲 – 追求自由與更好的經濟生活。因此,經濟誘因將是未來歐俄爭取烏克蘭和烏國境內能否團結之關鍵要素,亦是歐俄彼此深化合作,賴以消弭其政治外交上之競爭與不信任感的利器。不過,由於現在歐俄雙方在政治、外交上之互信基礎仍薄弱,故短時間內雙方在此地區的較勁,勢必難以化解。究竟歐俄雙方在經濟利益之合作能否消弭其政治外交上之競爭,雖尚待持續觀察,但從這次烏克蘭大選事件來看,其結果是可令人樂觀期待。

(完) 

Edited by Tina Lee/Translated by Susanne Ganz

編輯李美儀/英文翻譯馬強

(轉載自Taiwan News)


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