Kyiv Security Forum

Steven Pifer: Ukrainian Authorities Face 2 Challenges: to Curb Aggression and to Build Modern Country

13 April 2018, 16:57

The Ukrainian authorities are now facing two major challenges: to curb Russian aggression and to build a modern, successful country.

Steven Pifer, a Nonresident Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution (U.S.), stated this during the 11th Kyiv Security Forum in Kyiv.

“Russia has invaded and occupied Ukraine. And there are two challenges that Ukraine faces: the first one is how to counter Russia’s aggression, and the second is how to build a modern, successful country,” he said.

As a former Ambassador of the United States to Ukraine, S.Pifer noted that Ukraine had an enormous potential. However, Steven Pifer added, American diplomats had talked about this during his term in office (1998-2000), as well as before and after.

“And that is why this is the Government’s task to turn this potential into reality, to activate it,” he said.

According to the expert, many things depend on education: “We need to focus on an individual, to create conditions for him (or her) to be able to achieve a result depending on the capabilities”. It is also important to learn new approaches, this is especially true in Ukraine because Russia wages an aggressive disinformation campaign against it, and it is important to distinguish between fake and truth, S.Pifer adds.

It is also important to reform the health care system. One should invest in people’s welfare. “Ukrainians, like most other nations, want to live and educate their children, to pursue their own career in their country. And the authorities should create conditions for this. This will determine the success of the government,” he stressed.

For reference:

The annual international event Kyiv Security Forum was launched by the Arseniy Yatsenyuk Foundation Open Ukraine in 2007 as a platform for high-level discussions on the current issues in Europe and the Black Sea region. The Forum aims at increasing security cooperation between the EU and the Black Sea region, raising awareness about regional developments among key regional players, promoting the role of independent and non-governmental actors in setting the security agenda in Europe.

The event is being held with the support of NATO Information and Documentation Center in Ukraine, the German Marshall Fund, The Victor Pinchuk Foundation, The Royal Institute of International Relations, Chatham House (UK), and The Regional Representative Office of the Friedrich Ebert Foundation in Ukraine.