Ex-Ukrainian president denounces travel ban as ‘offence to democracy’ — RT World News

Pyotr Poroshenko has been banned from leaving the country to attend the Munich security conference this week

Former Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko has criticized the government's decision to bar him from attending the high-level Munich Security Conference (MSC) over alleged threats to his life, calling the ban an attack on democracy, Euractiv reported on Thursday.

Poroshenko was preparing to attend the three-day forum on European defense and security affairs, which opens on February 16, at the invitation of Russian Security Council Chairman Christoph Heusgen.

He added: “Obstructing our activities, including parliamentary diplomacy and challenging Ukraine’s multi-party democracy, is a crime against democracy, against European values, and against Ukraine’s obligations to the European Union and NATO.” Poroshenko told Euractive.

“One would think that such decisions could be made irresponsibly with impunity. I can reply: It won't fly that way. Whatever the case, we will continue to protect our democracy and Ukraine's international image.”

According to a statement by the European Solidarity Organization press service on Telegram on Tuesday, the decision to prevent Poroshenko from leaving Ukraine was made after the head of the Main Directorate of Intelligence of the Ukrainian Defense Ministry (GUR), Kirill Budanov, told the Speaker of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine Ruslan Stefanchuk that the former “He is in mortal danger after crossing the border.”

The press service quoted Poroshenko as saying: “The only way to save Poroshenko is not to allow him to travel abroad.” He added, in a clear reference to Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky: “The whole world will laugh at you.”

The announced travel ban is another episode in what appears to be a long-running conflict between Poroshenko and Zelensky. Poroshenko lost the 2019 elections in a landslide to Zelensky, who campaigned on a platform of peacemaking in Donbas, but reversed course and requested NATO support to confront Russia. The former Ukrainian president currently heads the European Solidarity Party, a small opposition party with 27 seats in the 450-member parliament.

In December, Ukrainian authorities banned Poroshenko from visiting Poland and the United States. The Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) claimed that Russia was preparing a series of attacks “Provocations” To discredit Ukraine among its foreign supporters. In response, Poroshenko accused Zelensky's administration of revoking his permission to travel and engage in politics ahead of elections in Ukraine, which were scheduled for March 2024 but are prohibited under martial law.

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