A Rarest Kind Of Handshake. Marta Dyczok’s Unexpected Encounter in Kyiv

Just the other day he submitted his resignation, saying that he could not continue, when elected MPs refused to adopt laws that would release additional funds for the war effort

Show hosts

Marta Dyczok

A Rarest Kind Of Handshake. Marta Dyczok’s Unexpected Encounter in Kyiv
https://static.hromadske.radio/2016/05/hr-en-14-07-27-handshake.mp3
https://static.hromadske.radio/2016/05/hr-en-14-07-27-handshake.mp3
A Rarest Kind Of Handshake. Marta Dyczok’s Unexpected Encounter in Kyiv
0:00
/
0:00

Arseniy Yatseniuk
Arseniy Yatseniuk
I saw Ukraine’s Prime Minister on my way home Friday evening. Arseniy Yatseniuk was walking down Hrushevska Street, from Parliament, towards the Cabinet of Ministers building.

I spotted him because he’s a little taller than the men he was walking with. “Look, it’s Yatseniuk,” I said to my friends, pulled out my camera, and started snapping away. He noticed, so I walked up, held out my hand, and introduced myself. “Where are you from?” he asked. “Canada,” I answered.

Given the week he’d had, I was amazed how calm he looked, and how he was so casually friendly. Just the other day, the usually restrained lawyer-economist turned politician gave an emotional speech to Parliament. He submitted his resignation, saying that he could not continue, when elected MPs refused to adopt laws that would release additional funds for the war effort, and the ruling coalition dissolved.

In my opinion, he’s been doing a tremendous job since taking over the government, after corrupt president Yanukovych fled five months ago. So I told him so. And added, that I’d said the same on Canadian national television, when news of his resignation broke. He smiled, modestly, and said “thanks.”

My friends wanted to get a picture with the PM, and he seemed chuffed. As we were gathering around for the shot, he graciously said, “May I introduce you to my colleague, Oleksander Turchynov, the Parliamentary Speaker. Perhaps you’d like him to be in the photo as well?” Of course we agreed.

Other passers by also stopped to shake Yatseniuk’s hand, and thank him for the work he was doing. He took the time to speak to each of them, before getting into the car that was waiting for him. Later I learned, that he was on his way to appear on a live political talk show, where he appealed for national unity.