2013-VISIT-Krivokapic-Rybak-KyivKYIV, 4 December 2013 – OSCE Parliamentary Assembly President Ranko Krivokapic held a bilateral meeting with Verkhovna Rada Speaker Volodymyr Rybak this morning in the Ukrainian Parliament.

The two had an open and candid discussion about the current situation in Ukraine, the challenges of democratization, and Ukraine's important role in the OSCE and in the Parliamentary Assembly.

Both sides agreed that the right of Ukrainian citizens to peacefully assemble and protest must be safeguarded. They further underscored the need to resolve the current situation in Ukraine through the country's institutions.

President Krivokapic encouraged Ukraine to continue its pursuit of democracy.

"The path to real democracy is not easy. We would like to see Ukraine invest more in the future of democratization, face all of the challenges that come with it, and stay the course.

"Every challenge for state institutions is a new chance for those institutions to rise to the occasion. We would like to see the current situation be resolved peacefully, through dialogue and through those institutions.

"I do believe Ukraine will be successful as it works toward the goal of real democracy. The OSCE Parliamentary Assembly is here to help on that path," Krivokapic said.

President Krivokapic also congratulated Ukraine on its 2013 Chairmanship of the OSCE. He urged close co-operation between Ukraine and the Parliamentary Assembly in the future, especially as the Assembly pursues reform and greater transparency within the OSCE.

"My home country, Montenegro, is a young democracy as well. Young democracies like ours need the OSCE PA family, which provides crucial support as we pursue shared goals. We also look forward to continuing work with Ukraine on improving the functioning of the OSCE," Krivokapic said.

President Krivokapic has appointed a delegation of OSCE Parliamentarians to meet leaders of Ukraine's political opposition on 5 December in the parliament.

The delegation will include OSCE PA Vice-President Walburga Habsburg Douglas (Sweden); OSCE PA Vice-President George Tsereteli (Georgia); former OSCE PA President Joao Soares (Portugal); Chair of the OSCE PA General Committee on Democracy, Human Rights and Humanitarian Questions Isabel Santos (Portugal); Vice-Chair of the OSCE PA General Committee on Democracy, Human Rights and Humanitarian Questions Mehmet Sevki Kulkuloglu (Turkey); and Rapporteur of the OSCE PA General Committee on Democracy, Human Rights and Humanitarian Questions Gordana Comic (Serbia).

In his meeting with President Krivokapic, Speaker Rybak emphasized the importance of dialogue between Ukraine's political parties in resolving the current situation in the country.

"Speaker Rybak informed me that he has personally requested that the Ukrainian Prosecutor General carry out a swift investigation into the weekend's violence," Krivokapic said after the meeting.

Rybak also welcomed the OSCE PA's monitoring of elections and its support for reform in his country.

He also expressed hope for increased bilateral co-operation between Ukraine and Montenegro.

Ukraine is hosting a meeting of the Bureau of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly and a meeting of the OSCE Ministerial Council on 4-6 December in Kyiv.