Vienna Since the beginning of the Russian invasion, national unity has been a raison d’être in Ukrainian domestic policy – but this agreement is now crumbling. Two conflicts make this clear: the political rivalry between President Volodymyr Zelensky and his predecessor Petro Poroshenko, and the dismissal of human rights commissioner Lyudmila Denisova. While these are very different cases on the surface, they both raise questions about the rule of law in the country and the concentration of power in the hands of the executive branch.
Their additional powers within the framework of the war-related state of emergency were passed by parliament several times without dissenting votes. The Human Rights Commissioner had denounced the Russian war crimes internationally, for example at the World Economic Forum in Davos. This was her undoing: Denisova spent too much time “in warm, quiet Western Europe” for Selensky’s party “Servants of the People”.