Zelensky hits reset on decentralisation

Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky has withdrawn his proposed decentralisation law after it was criticised by the European Parliament and a number of western embassies for not doing enough to give power to people.

This proposed legislation is important as it will help to establish a new constitutional framework, including for the breakaway regions of the east of the country. However the original draft made no specific reference to the Donbass. Current peace proposals for the region, based around the Normandy talks have seen both Russia and Ukraine commit to the so-called Steinmeier formula which would see greater autonomy for the regions in the east – albeit that each side sees the required outcome in different terms. Until the Kyiv government outlines its proposals for special status it seems unlikely that the next step – local elections – can take place.

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