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Defending Democracy: The Future of Ukraine
Episode 424th February 2023 • Democracy! The Podcast • CEPPS Advisor Adrienne Ross, Fmr Deputy Asst Secretary Strategic Communications, US Dept of State, Journalist
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One year into Russia’s war on Ukraine, we take a look at how Ukrainians are preparing for life after war, their relentless optimism and their deep dedication to keeping the wheels of justice rolling, in this fourth and final episode of the limited series, “Defending Democracy: Ukraine”.

Last February, the International Foundation for Electoral Systems Head of Political and Legal Affairs Alisa Shushkovska fled Kyiv with her child, when rockets flew past their apartment window.  But even as she navigated life as a refugee abroad, she never stopped working towards the future of Ukraine. Alisa is the fiber on which Ukraine will prevail amid this war. She takes time from her work to discuss with Adrienne what free and fair elections look like in post-war Ukraine.  

Then, the powerhouse director of Ukraine’s first organization to win the Nobel Peace Prize for documenting more than 28,000 alleged Russian war crimes since 2014, Oleksandra Matviichuk, calls for a new international tribunal to hold Russian President Putin accountable. The 2022 Nobel Laureate gives Adrienne a haunting account of what she has seen and explains how she believes the international community can restore justice for the victims of this deadly aggression.

Plus, it’s often said that Ukraine is fighting two wars. Hear from President Zelenskyy’s pick to run the cabinet-level National Agency on Corruption Prevention, Oleksandr Novikov. He is a man on a mission who will stop at nothing to combat corruption, defend democracy, and protect the future of Ukraine. 

Key Links

Follow CEPPS on Twitter and Instagram.

Democracy! The Podcast is hosted by CEPPS and Adrienne Ross, with production assistance from Amy Radlinski and voiceover from Alix Lawson.   

Featured guests in this episode: 

  • Oleksandra Matviichuk, Director, Center for Civil Liberties (Ukraine),  2022 Nobel Laureate.
  • Oleksandr Novikov, Head of the National Agency on Corruption Prevention.
  • Alisa Shushkovska, Head of Political and Legal Affairs & Senior Advisor, The International Foundation for Electoral Systems.

This podcast has been produced by the Consortium for Elections, and Political Process Strengthening through the Democratic Elections and Political Processes Cooperative Agreement and is made possible by the generous support of the American people through the United States Agency for International Development.

Opinions expressed here are those of the host and the guests and do not necessarily reflect the views of USAID or the US Government.  

Democracy! The Podcast is produced by Evo Terra and Sam Walker of  Simpler Media Productions.



This podcast uses the following third-party services for analysis:

Chartable - https://chartable.com/privacy

Transcripts

Adrienne Ross:

Welcome to Democracy!

Adrienne Ross:

The Podcast that shines light on some of the darkest challenges facing

Adrienne Ross:

the fight for around the globe.

Adrienne Ross:

Brought to you by the Consortium for Elections and Political Process

Adrienne Ross:

Strengthening (CEPPS) in partnership and funding from our friends at the

Adrienne Ross:

United States Agency for International Development (USAID) through the

Adrienne Ross:

Democratic Elections Political Processes Cooperative Agreement.

Adrienne Ross:

I'm your host, Adrienne Ross.

Adrienne Ross:

As we drop the final episode in the Defending Democracy: Ukraine series,

Adrienne Ross:

we also mark one full year to the day since Russia shocked the world with

Adrienne Ross:

their full-scale attack on Ukraine.

Adrienne Ross:

While the future for both nations remains unclear, we do know

Adrienne Ross:

Ukrainians are defending democracy in ways many never thought possible.

Adrienne Ross:

You've heard some of the best examples throughout this series.

Adrienne Ross:

I hope you'll listen to all four episodes and share your feedback in

Adrienne Ross:

the comments section of this podcast.

Adrienne Ross:

Ahead, The Future of Ukraine.

Adrienne Ross:

We take a hard look at several crucial elements Ukraine must overcome to

Adrienne Ross:

achieve victory, that is not only to beat the Russians, but to succeed

Adrienne Ross:

in true democratic transformation.

Adrienne Ross:

First, hear from a legal expert who has her finger on the future

Adrienne Ross:

of free and fair elections.

Adrienne Ross:

Then, a member of President Zelensky's cabinet has been working around the

Adrienne Ross:

clock, often from an underground bunker.

Adrienne Ross:

He'll tell you about Ukraine's second war, the battle on corruption.

Adrienne Ross:

Plus, demand for accountability of Russia's war crimes remains intense.

Adrienne Ross:

The Nobel Laureate driven to bring justice to these victims joins

Adrienne Ross:

me for one of the most moving interviews you'll hear in this series.

Adrienne Ross:

But first, let's look at what the future of Ukraine holds.

Alix Lawson:

For more than sixteen years with funding from USAID, CEPPS has

Alix Lawson:

supported institutions that have allowed Ukrainians to create a society free

Alix Lawson:

of autocracy, tyranny, and repression.

Alix Lawson:

In truth, Ukrainians' governing institutions have proven so stable

Alix Lawson:

they continue to function effectively even with Russia's onslaught.

Alix Lawson:

Meanwhile, the United States Secretary of State says he has determined that

Alix Lawson:

members of Russia's armed forces and other officials have committed "crimes

Alix Lawson:

against humanity in Ukraine" - a term reserved for what the Secretary

Alix Lawson:

calls, "the most egregious of crimes."

Alix Lawson:

Inside Russia, there is growing evidence that the Kremlin is

Alix Lawson:

expanding its crackdown on independent civil society and media.

Alix Lawson:

A Russian court recently ruled to shut down the country's oldest human rights

Alix Lawson:

organization, the Moscow Helsinki Group.

Alix Lawson:

Also, rising are the estimates of what it will take to rebuild Ukraine.

Alix Lawson:

According to the World Bank, European Commission, and the

Alix Lawson:

Ukrainian government, costs will likely exceed 349 billion dollars.

Alix Lawson:

Despite these facts, Ukrainians remain courageous and relentlessly optimistic.

Alix Lawson:

In a nationwide survey conducted by one of the Consortium's core

Alix Lawson:

partners, the International Republican Institute, 95% of Ukrainians see

Alix Lawson:

their country's future as promising.

Adrienne Ross:

Alisa Shushkovska agrees.

Adrienne Ross:

She says there's huge hope for Ukraine.

Adrienne Ross:

Alisa is the Senior Legal Advisor for the International

Adrienne Ross:

Foundation for Electoral Systems.

Adrienne Ross:

She is dedicated to seeing Ukraine prevail.

Adrienne Ross:

And on the Consortium's election front, she has proven to be a formidable partner.

Adrienne Ross:

Alisa was forced to flee Kyiv in the earliest days of Russia's invasion.

Adrienne Ross:

But no matter where she went, she never stopped thinking

Adrienne Ross:

about the future of Ukraine.

Alisa Shushkovska:

Uh, one day the rocket just flew in front of my

Alisa Shushkovska:

son's apartment, my son's, uh, room.

Alisa Shushkovska:

Uh, it was the rocket that hit the TV tower.

Alisa Shushkovska:

It killed at least five people with more people injured.

Alisa Shushkovska:

Another day there was shelling, a real fight right on the

Alisa Shushkovska:

neighboring street, which is one of the biggest avenues of Kyiv.

Alisa Shushkovska:

Uh, we live on a high floor, and, unfortunately, we saw everything.

Alisa Shushkovska:

That was actually the night when we thought that this is the end.

Alisa Shushkovska:

They're here and thanks god, in that particular situation, they were defeated.

Alisa Shushkovska:

So we stayed at home in Kyiv for more than a week.

Alisa Shushkovska:

Then we took a chance and we left the city by the last highway, which remained

Alisa Shushkovska:

intact because the rest escape routes were just either destroyed or they were

Alisa Shushkovska:

actually occupied parts of the region.

Alisa Shushkovska:

We stayed for some time in a rural area, uh, and then we just decided to depart.

Alisa Shushkovska:

I drove out of country together with my son, uh, with other familiar

Alisa Shushkovska:

women and their kids, as well.

Alisa Shushkovska:

So, I and my son, we have stayed, uh, in Italy for almost five months.

Alisa Shushkovska:

Uh, a very kind family hosted us, although we were, of course, in safety,

Alisa Shushkovska:

but my husband and my, the rest of my family, they stayed in Ukraine.

Adrienne Ross:

And I understand you came back at your first opportunity?

Alisa Shushkovska:

We came back, right?

Alisa Shushkovska:

It was in August.

Alisa Shushkovska:

Uh, but I kept, kept on working even in Italy.

Alisa Shushkovska:

And it was quite an intensive time.

Alisa Shushkovska:

And, uh, we are working on a number of policy issues and legal reform,

Alisa Shushkovska:

cooperating with our partners, uh, from Parliament, from civil society,

Alisa Shushkovska:

from Central Electoral Commission.

Alisa Shushkovska:

Of course, happy to be back, but yeah, now also we are suffering from other

Alisa Shushkovska:

issues related to war, recent air attacks on Kyiv and energy blackouts,

Alisa Shushkovska:

uh, which happen every day, uh, in all, uh, districts of, of the city.

Adrienne Ross:

Let's go back and talk a little bit about

Adrienne Ross:

post-war elections in Ukraine.

Adrienne Ross:

Why don't you tell us a little bit about how you've laid out that work, and how

Adrienne Ross:

do you even start to do something like that when you're country's at war?

Alisa Shushkovska:

This is just the right time now, uh, to think about it because

Alisa Shushkovska:

when the war will, will be over, there will be just no time for that because

Alisa Shushkovska:

we'll need to think about practical stuff.

Alisa Shushkovska:

Now we have all opportunities just together, uh, together with the

Alisa Shushkovska:

partners, uh, to involve civil society, Central Electoral Commission,

Alisa Shushkovska:

international partners, we discuss the problems which are at hand.

Alisa Shushkovska:

We discuss what to do with the millions of Ukrainians who are displaced.

Alisa Shushkovska:

Some of them are displaced within the country.

Alisa Shushkovska:

Some of them are still out of country.

Alisa Shushkovska:

So there will be lots of challenges related to organization of out-of-country

Alisa Shushkovska:

voting - how to organize it, uh, how to find ways to, to open maybe more

Alisa Shushkovska:

polling stations, or to consider alternative types of elections.

Adrienne Ross:

When you're doing this work, Alisa, do you feel like

Adrienne Ross:

there's a lot of hope for Ukraine?

Alisa Shushkovska:

There has been a huge hope for Ukraine, and we realize that

Alisa Shushkovska:

Ukraine now is, uh, actually setting an example for the whole democratic

Alisa Shushkovska:

world, and even those who are not yet democratic because, uh, Ukraine is

Alisa Shushkovska:

managing quite well in military parts, so there are successes on the front.

Alisa Shushkovska:

At the same time, there are truly, uh, efforts to keep on and

Alisa Shushkovska:

to progress in democracy field.

Adrienne Ross:

Before the war broke out, President Zelensky

Adrienne Ross:

had made campaign promises to put a new referendum law in place.

Adrienne Ross:

Can you talk a little bit more about this law and why it's especially important

Adrienne Ross:

to Ukrainian democracy right now?

Alisa Shushkovska:

It was actually, uh, election promise number one

Alisa Shushkovska:

made by, uh, President Zelensky.

Alisa Shushkovska:

In his election campaign he promised to give people more influence

Alisa Shushkovska:

over the national policies.

Alisa Shushkovska:

And finally, it was adopted in early 2021.

Alisa Shushkovska:

The previous law was, uh, originated, backed by the

Alisa Shushkovska:

ex-President Viktor Yanukovych.

Alisa Shushkovska:

Uh, it create, it created possibilities to bypass Ukrainian

Alisa Shushkovska:

Parliament in decision-making.

Alisa Shushkovska:

So it was largely unconstitutional.

Alisa Shushkovska:

And finally it ended up in the constitutional court, the process on

Alisa Shushkovska:

the, when the draft won referendum was being developed, it was fully inclusive.

Alisa Shushkovska:

There was engagement of, uh, all leading experts in this field, uh,

Alisa Shushkovska:

civil society organizations, public authorities, international partners.

Alisa Shushkovska:

And IFES has been playing also a crucial part.

Alisa Shushkovska:

And also the Venice Commission, uh, which is very important.

Alisa Shushkovska:

It assessed the draft law and said that it was largely compliant

Alisa Shushkovska:

with international standards.

Alisa Shushkovska:

This is truly important for Ukraine to have the laws in the sphere of democracy

Alisa Shushkovska:

be truly com, uh, compliant with, uh, with the basic international standards.

Alisa Shushkovska:

This is, uh, really good that now Ukraine has this and we can only hope

Alisa Shushkovska:

that it'll be implemented for the benefit of Ukraine, and only when truly

Alisa Shushkovska:

important for the whole state issues and only when the martial law is lifted.

Adrienne Ross:

Why can't you hold a referendum when this is in place?

Alisa Shushkovska:

The martial law actually imposes severe limitations

Alisa Shushkovska:

on a number of things in the country, in the states, including

Alisa Shushkovska:

unconstitutional rights and freedoms.

Alisa Shushkovska:

But it must be always listed explicitly what exactly is limited.

Alisa Shushkovska:

Uh, and uh, in part of referendum and elections, it is just not allowed.

Alisa Shushkovska:

It is directly forbidden to hold referendum and elections

Alisa Shushkovska:

in the case of martial law.

Adrienne Ross:

What does that look like on a day-to-day basis?

Alisa Shushkovska:

In my life in particular, it is mostly about curfew

Alisa Shushkovska:

time because we are not allowed to go out on streets after 11:00 PM until 5:00 AM.

Alisa Shushkovska:

We don't have any gatherings now, like assemblies, uh, it is just not

Alisa Shushkovska:

allowed to be held in this context.

Alisa Shushkovska:

It is just not possible to ensure a number of issues while

Alisa Shushkovska:

there is a war for elections.

Alisa Shushkovska:

There is so, so many things which have to be done.

Alisa Shushkovska:

Uh, there is, uh, political competition, which has also now been limited because

Alisa Shushkovska:

we have a marathon in media, which, uh, several TV channels are united

Alisa Shushkovska:

and they're streaming the same line.

Alisa Shushkovska:

There's a number of issues related to, uh, ensured security, uh, safety,

Alisa Shushkovska:

how to do this, uh, when there are just sirens every day, sometimes

Alisa Shushkovska:

two, three times a day when, uh, when the siren you need to go to shelter.

Alisa Shushkovska:

And all the entities, they are required to close their doors to the visitors.

Alisa Shushkovska:

So it is just not possible to organize.

Alisa Shushkovska:

I mean, this goes on top of the pure limitation, which is in the

Alisa Shushkovska:

laws and in the constitution, which says that no elections can be held.

Adrienne Ross:

Can you talk a little bit big picture?

Adrienne Ross:

What do you think of Ukraine's peace negotiations and why has the referendum

Adrienne Ross:

law been so important to those talks?

Alisa Shushkovska:

Right.

Alisa Shushkovska:

This is a very good question.

Alisa Shushkovska:

Uh, there, it was referred to the law, uh, on referendum and possibilities

Alisa Shushkovska:

to have referendum on peace deal.

Alisa Shushkovska:

And when there were some hopes for the Istanbul negotiations and there was a

Alisa Shushkovska:

hope of the Ukrainian, uh, authorities that there might be some ground

Alisa Shushkovska:

where the peace deal can be reached.

Alisa Shushkovska:

But at that time, the law, which is already in place, it was referred

Alisa Shushkovska:

to because now Ukraine has a legal basis for holding a referendum.

Alisa Shushkovska:

At the same time, now it seems off the table because President Zelensky

Alisa Shushkovska:

clearly said if Russia organizes, uh, the sham event called Fake Referendum,

Alisa Shushkovska:

then there will be no chance to hold peace, uh, negotiations at all.

Alisa Shushkovska:

There is no way that we can find a common ground because, uh, there is

Alisa Shushkovska:

no case that Ukraine can concede its territories because it's first and

Alisa Shushkovska:

foremost, uh, it will never be, uh, allowed by the people of Ukraine.

Alisa Shushkovska:

And, uh, it is directly forbidden by the constitution.

Alisa Shushkovska:

There can't be any concessions of the territory of Ukraine, even in case the

Alisa Shushkovska:

referendum is held on this, on this issue.

Alisa Shushkovska:

It is just unconstitutional and it, it is not acceptable for the Ukrainian people.

Adrienne Ross:

What do your neighbors say about that?

Alisa Shushkovska:

I cannot say for all Ukrainians, but predominantly

Alisa Shushkovska:

the ordinary Ukrainian would say, we believe in the armed forces of

Alisa Shushkovska:

Ukraine and this is the only tool which will allow to end this war.

Alisa Shushkovska:

And this is the thought which I think most of, most of Ukrainians would

Alisa Shushkovska:

sign up to because there can't be any negotiations with the country, which

Alisa Shushkovska:

simply lies on everything, and there can't be any trust in any peace deal.

Alisa Shushkovska:

Even in case if, uh, any peace deal hypothetically is signed, there is

Alisa Shushkovska:

no guarantee that they would not violate it again because there is no

Alisa Shushkovska:

international law for them, unfortunately.

Adrienne Ross:

In September, the defacto authorities in the four regions that

Adrienne Ross:

are now occupied in Eastern Ukraine were given a so-called referendum by Russia.

Adrienne Ross:

Do you wanna explain a little bit about what happened and what kind

Adrienne Ross:

of authority does Ukrainian law have over these circumstances?

Alisa Shushkovska:

What happened is just a logistical military exercise.

Alisa Shushkovska:

This is not even a Fake Referendum.

Alisa Shushkovska:

We cannot even call it like that because from international perspective,

Alisa Shushkovska:

from the Ukrainian perspective, this has nothing to do with the law.

Alisa Shushkovska:

It is fully illegitimate and illegal.

Alisa Shushkovska:

Talking about the, uh, Ukrainian law who's administrating this, in

Alisa Shushkovska:

peaceful condition, any referendum could be administered by the

Alisa Shushkovska:

Central Electoral Commission.

Alisa Shushkovska:

There can't be any, even in case of peaceful time, even in case of having this

Alisa Shushkovska:

legal framework from local referendum, referendum on concessions of the

Alisa Shushkovska:

territories are not possible and they cannot be even initiated because they will

Alisa Shushkovska:

end up in the constitutional court and they will be considered null and void.

Alisa Shushkovska:

What they call referendum has nothing to do with this, with this

Alisa Shushkovska:

name, with the title even, but this is just a military exercise.

Adrienne Ross:

Well, in a military exercise in which we saw people going

Adrienne Ross:

door to door with ballot boxes, right?

Alisa Shushkovska:

There was a, a set of violations, I would say probably

Alisa Shushkovska:

all principles of, uh, free and fair elections were violated because, uh,

Alisa Shushkovska:

there was no secrecy of vote insured.

Alisa Shushkovska:

There was no freedom of opinion insured and of, of course, there was no one

Alisa Shushkovska:

in the position to organize this referendum because the only authority

Alisa Shushkovska:

which is authorized to do this is the Central Electoral Commission of Ukraine.

Adrienne Ross:

Do you worry about something like that

Adrienne Ross:

happening closer to home in Kyiv?

Alisa Shushkovska:

Um, uh, yes.

Alisa Shushkovska:

It would be, it would be terrible if it would happen.

Alisa Shushkovska:

But uh, at the same time, we realized, uh, when we saw that, uh, Russians were

Alisa Shushkovska:

trying to occupy Kyiv for months and then just left because there's no way

Alisa Shushkovska:

that the army would concede the capital or, uh, mean the, this part of Ukraine.

Adrienne Ross:

As you work towards free and fair elections, Alisa, in

Adrienne Ross:

your mind, is there a timeframe?

Adrienne Ross:

When do you think that Ukraine might be able to hold elections?

Alisa Shushkovska:

We have constitutionally mandated term for

Alisa Shushkovska:

holding elections for the Parliament next year in October, 2023.

Alisa Shushkovska:

According to the constitution, this will be an expiration

Alisa Shushkovska:

of the current convocation.

Alisa Shushkovska:

At the same time, in case of martial law is extended, there is no way to

Alisa Shushkovska:

hold them, so they will overstay and they will continue their tenure till

Alisa Shushkovska:

the time when martial law is lifted.

Alisa Shushkovska:

We just want to, people of the whole world to understand that it was

Alisa Shushkovska:

the Russian Federation who invaded and they must be held liable.

Alisa Shushkovska:

And there must be all efforts throughout the whole world garnered to, to bring them

Alisa Shushkovska:

to justice and to help Ukraine with all the available means just to stop this war.

Adrienne Ross:

Alisa Shushkovska, thank you so much for your time today.

Adrienne Ross:

Oleksandra Matviichuk leads Kyiv Center for Civil Liberties.

Adrienne Ross:

It's the first organization to ever win the Nobel Peace Prize in Ukraine.

Adrienne Ross:

In 2022, Oleksandra traveled to Norway to accept the award on behalf of the team.

Adrienne Ross:

Together, they've spent the past eight years documenting

Adrienne Ross:

thousands of Russian war crimes.

Adrienne Ross:

I'll warn you, this is an emotional subject, and parts of what Oleksandra

Adrienne Ross:

describes are hard to hear.

Adrienne Ross:

Her work comes at a great personal cost, but as you'll witness, she's determined to

Adrienne Ross:

get justice for the victims of this war.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

Putin tried to convince the whole world that

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

rule of law, democracy, and human rights are fake values because they

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

couldn't protect you during the war.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

In order to respond to this value dimension, we have to demonstrate justice.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

And this is a huge challenge because we faced with enormous amount of war crimes.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

And now we have a accountability gap when national system is unable to

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

cope with such enormous amount of crimes and international criminal

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

court will limit its investigation only to several select cases.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

That's why we need additional international mechanism like international

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

tribunal to hold Putin, Lukashenko, and other war criminals accountable.

Adrienne Ross:

What does justice look like for these victims?

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

They need to restore not only their broken lives,

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

broken visions of the future, but they need to restore their beliefs

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

that rule of law exist and justice is possible even though delay in time.

Adrienne Ross:

Oleksandra, you're talking about a new tribunal.

Adrienne Ross:

Why is the international criminal court not sufficient in the case of Ukraine?

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

International criminal court have no jurisdiction

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

over such kinds of crimes as aggression.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

And this is a problem.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

We, we need special tribunal on aggression because there is no court in the world

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

which can persecute Putin and his surrounding for this international crime.

Adrienne Ross:

You join the cries of many of your fellow Ukrainians who have told

Adrienne Ross:

me, without weapons we can't have peace.

Adrienne Ross:

How can a human rights lawyer and a Nobel Peace Prize

Adrienne Ross:

recipient call for more weapons?

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

It's something which I not expected before the

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

largescale invasion started, and I found myself in a very difficult situation

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

that I have no legal instrument how to stop Russian attrosities.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

And it's very visible, not only for me as a human rights lawyer, each people

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

in the world will clearly see that the whole UN system couldn't stop forcible

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

deportations, forcible mobilizations, tortures, murders, abductions, deliberate

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

destruction of residential buildings, churches, hospitals were closed or pushed

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

into close the filtration camp system, which Russia used to humiliate and

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

legally deprive Ukrainians from liberty.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

But the goal is not only to persecute and investigate war crimes, which

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

have already been committed.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

The goal is much more ambitious.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

We have to prevent new war crimes to emerge.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

We have to stop this human suffering.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

Millions of people suffering.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

And now we need weapons to be able to defend our country, our people, our

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

democratic choice, and our freedom.

Adrienne Ross:

Your initiative has documented more than 24,000 alleged

Adrienne Ross:

war crimes in Ukraine so far.

Adrienne Ross:

Have you been shocked by the scope of these offenses?

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

Very difficult because when we speak about war crimes,

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

we speak not just about, uh, documentation of violation of some Geneva Conventions.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

When you work on the ground, you understand very clearly

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

that we are documenting human pain and human suffering.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

And when we speak about a huge scale, we speak about enormous amount of human pain.

Adrienne Ross:

And I, I can just tell from talking to you that you've

Adrienne Ross:

been deeply touched by the horrors that have happened in your country.

Adrienne Ross:

Can you talk a little bit about the work that goes into

Adrienne Ross:

documenting each of these crimes?

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

In order to do it effectively, we united our efforts

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

with dozens organizations, mostly regional ones, and we built a Ukrainian

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

network of documentators, which is called "Tribunal for Putin Initiative."

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

We set this, the one common methodology and we use different

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

methods of documentation.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

We analyze open sources with, uh, other verification, either

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

true information or not.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

We send mobile groups to work on the liberated areas.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

If something happened, our documentator are able very quickly to be on a place

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

and to make their own photos, videos, their own descriptions of what happened.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

We gather testimonies of victims and witness of the war crimes.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

We use, not only testimonies, uh, when something happened and we can't reach

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

the people, but we can document it.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

We also do it, for example, when Russian rockets hit residential buildings and

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

their house was destroyed, and we know that there are some victims, but we

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

can't reach them, or their relatives will also put this information in database

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

in order to be able filter to provide for each cases which we documented, the

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

proper investigation is not our task.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

That's why we open our database to national investigation bodies.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

We closely work with international criminal court, and that's why

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

we start very publicly to raise awareness that we need assistance

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

in order to provide justice.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

It's needs enormous amount of people and institutional complexity, which

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

means for us that it's something which couldn't be left on the responsibility

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

of the national system of Ukraine.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

We need to find a way how to involve international element

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

on the level of national investigation and national justice.

Adrienne Ross:

What do you need to get this job done?

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

First of all, we need strategy.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

We have to develop complex justice strategy with different elements,

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

which is exist already and which, which have to be created.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

And the link between all these elements, it's very visible for us who, who

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

work on the ground that without these systems, we will not be able to provide

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

justice for victims of this war.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

I saw that in first months of a large scale invasion, when we speak

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

about assistance our international community sent to work with us,

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

a lot of qualified consultants.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

But I always use this example, when you have a car without petrol, you

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

can hire the best driver in the world, but this car will not move.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

And there are a lot of things which has to be done or are not taking

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

place, not because Ukrainians don't know about it, but because we lack of

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

qualified working hands on the ground.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

For example, in Kharkiv region, now my colleague, journalist, who is

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

editor of some popular internet media, had to be a volunteer to identify

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

dead people because it was too, too less qualified people who can do it.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

Yes, my colleague, this journalist hadn't also be prepared for such type of job, but

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

somebody have to do it and he volunteer.

Adrienne Ross:

It's not only difficult, it's extremely emotional, is it not?

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

Sure.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

Everything which is going is extremely emotional.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

And I can understand that sometimes it's even difficult to believe

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

that it's taking place in reality.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

Even for us who live in this reality.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

What I can say about people who live in peace in the well-developed

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

democracies and start to read about torture camps or about mass graves

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

or about this cruelty when Russian soldiers killed a 4-year-old boy who

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

just play with his ball in the yard.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

It's difficult to imagine how people can do it, but unfortunately,

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

this horror is reality.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

I have never imagined myself to do this work because I have a huge

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

empathy to people, but the war started and I have no other choice.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

Like when you face with challenges, you have to respond.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

And we can't choose the country in which we are born, or the

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

time in which we are born.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

But we always have a right to choose, to be active for person and

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

to respond to the challenges or to be passive and just indifferent.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

We have to invent a system which are able to protect people

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

against autocracies and wars.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

And I strongly believe that people are not numbers.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

We have to provide justice for each person.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

If you committed violence against people such level that it's

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

recognized as international crimes, this violence will be investigated,

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

the perpetrators will be punished, and victims will get satisfaction.

Adrienne Ross:

Oleksandra, when you accepted the Nobel Peace Prize,

Adrienne Ross:

you said in your speech that this war is not between two states,

Adrienne Ross:

it's actually a war of two systems, authoritarianism and democracy.

Adrienne Ross:

What does that idea of the two systems mean for Ukrainians right now?

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

It's something for which we are fighting for.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

It's our values.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

And values is um, like a principle which determine your behavior, not

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

when everything is easy, but when you are going through dramatic times.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

So it's real values is for Ukrainians because in this fight for freedom and

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

democracy, we paying the highest price.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

We paying our life.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

When I spoke with my colleagues, Russian Human Rights Defenders, with who we

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

work very closely and who helped us to release Ukrainian political prisoners in

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

Russia or to make their detention more human, I ask them and how we can help

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

you because you are persecuted by regime.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

You are labeled as foreign agent.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

You are faced with the real threats by yourself.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

And they always answered, "If you want to help us, please be successful."

Adrienne Ross:

Have we left anything out of this conversation

Adrienne Ross:

that you wanna mention?

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

I always asked about what kinds of story

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

impressed you the most, and I can't answer because, first, we have

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

hundreds of thousands of stories.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

But I always can tell stories, which I remember for that concrete moment.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

And one story is a story of family from Kyiv region.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

Their mother was dead in the basement because she can't stand

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

this horror and her heart stopped.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

And several small kids left alone and the neighbors who was in the same basement

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

start to take care of these kids.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

And when Kyiv region was liberated, journalists spoke with these neighbors

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

and make the photo their grave of their mothers, and these kids as well, but

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

whats break my heart the son, he told that mommy came to, to him during the

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

night when he slept and ask him to provide food and, and she came to the grave

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

with the food to him mom, and left it.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

And when I saw this photo [gets choked up] I was killed.

Adrienne Ross:

You are doing such extraordinary work under

Adrienne Ross:

such excruciating circumstances.

Adrienne Ross:

I, how are you doing this?

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

:

We have no other choice.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

:

It's dramatic times.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

:

It's a very tragic times.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

:

No one in Ukraine want this war.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

:

It wasn't our choice.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

:

Russia decided to restore forcibly their empire.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

:

Russia decided to forcibly erase Ukrainian identity.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

:

We have no other choice.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

:

Stop fighting - there will be no more us.

Adrienne Ross:

Well, you're extraordinarily brave.

Adrienne Ross:

Oleksandra, what is your greatest hope for the future of Ukraine?

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

To achieve victory.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

And victory for Ukraine is not just to repel Putin troops from

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

Ukraine and liberate people in occupied areas, including Crimea.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

Victory for Ukraine is to succeed in democratic transformation.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

It's mean that we have to build a society where the rights of

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

everybody are protected, government is accountable, traditionalist,

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

independent, and police serve people.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

Maybe I will put it like this.

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

I wish to live in Ukraine where the work of Center for Civil Liberties in our

Oleksandra Matviichuk:

present world are not be needed anymore.

Adrienne Ross:

Oleksandra Matviichuk, Ukraine's Nobel Peace

Adrienne Ross:

Prize winner from 2022, thank you so much for talking to us today.

Adrienne Ross:

In 2021, Transparency International ranked Ukraine the second most corrupt

Adrienne Ross:

country in Europe, behind only Russia.

Adrienne Ross:

Since then, it's been up to one man, Oleksandr Novikov, the Chairman of

Adrienne Ross:

the National Agency for Corruption Prevention, to lead Ukraine's fight back.

Adrienne Ross:

A former public prosecutor, Alex works closely with the Consortium

Adrienne Ross:

through the International Foundation for Electoral System (IFES).

Adrienne Ross:

He is laser-focused on achieving this pivotal mandate from his post

Adrienne Ross:

on President Zelensky's cabinet.

Adrienne Ross:

He says war isn't an excuse.

Adrienne Ross:

In fact, he and his staff survived the first three months of

Adrienne Ross:

Russia's attacks in a bomb shelter under their offices in Kyiv.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Ukraine's success, uh, in this war depends on the

Oleksandr Novikov:

effective and sustainable function of our democratic institutions, including

Oleksandr Novikov:

those promoting public integrity and fighting against corruption.

Oleksandr Novikov:

For us, it's the same thing.

Oleksandr Novikov:

At the beginning of this war, we all saw the Russian army's corruption.

Oleksandr Novikov:

In Ukraine, the situation was radically different since the, uh, we have an

Oleksandr Novikov:

effective anti-corruption system.

Oleksandr Novikov:

However, this is the space for further improvement.

Oleksandr Novikov:

No doubt, uh, what our soldiers are doing in the frontline is genuine heroism.

Oleksandr Novikov:

No one globally expected Ukraine to resist.

Oleksandr Novikov:

But we did not just resign.

Oleksandr Novikov:

We have already been activated, liberating our people and lands occupied by Russia.

Oleksandr Novikov:

They're also grateful to all our international partners, of course.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Europe supports, um, significant contribution to global freedom,

Oleksandr Novikov:

democracy, and security.

Oleksandr Novikov:

We believe the one of the key, uh, reasons western society supports

Oleksandr Novikov:

Ukraine, that Ukraine has proven to be a sustainable democracy and an agent state.

Oleksandr Novikov:

It would be a dramatic mistake, uh, to treat Ukraine as a

Oleksandr Novikov:

country like Afghanistan.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Reasonably, Ukraine's condition is much more similar to

Oleksandr Novikov:

that of Croatia or Slovenia.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Therefore, fast, flexible, and inclusive support should adjust four key

Oleksandr Novikov:

challenges Ukraine is facing right now.

Adrienne Ross:

Why is the war not an excuse?

Oleksandr Novikov:

Because, uh, the integrity is key answer for our victory.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Because our military system and our army have high level of integrity,

Oleksandr Novikov:

we have a better conditions to beat Russians on the battlefields.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Integrity is a military issue because, uh, Russia are using, uh, narratives,

Oleksandr Novikov:

uh, or fail state or corrupted state to undermine the support of Ukraine,

Oleksandr Novikov:

uh, in, uh, western societies and between, uh, western governments.

Oleksandr Novikov:

But it's not true.

Adrienne Ross:

In fact the opposite is true, correct?

Oleksandr Novikov:

Yes, of course.

Oleksandr Novikov:

But the level of understanding how important this corruption

Oleksandr Novikov:

for Ukraine is, uh, 70%.

Oleksandr Novikov:

So why is this, uh, feeling is 70% when the corruption is 15%?

Oleksandr Novikov:

Because of, uh, Russian military operations in the sphere of

Oleksandr Novikov:

communications, in this sphere of media.

Adrienne Ross:

Your office is new.

Adrienne Ross:

The Corruption and Prevention Agency is a relatively new office.

Adrienne Ross:

Can you explain what happened in the wake of the Euromaidan revolution?

Oleksandr Novikov:

Only Ukrainian society choose its path to European Union in 2013.

Oleksandr Novikov:

During the Revolution of Dignity, Russia tried to impose its values, uh, on us

Oleksandr Novikov:

through its puppets in our government.

Oleksandr Novikov:

But our people are different.

Oleksandr Novikov:

We are entirely different from the Russians.

Oleksandr Novikov:

After the beating of students by security forces on Maidan, the

Oleksandr Novikov:

Ukrainian people came to the streets.

Oleksandr Novikov:

At that time, I was working in the prosecution office.

Oleksandr Novikov:

But I could not sit back and watch what is happening.

Oleksandr Novikov:

So I also went to the Maidan together with my family.

Oleksandr Novikov:

We didn't want to live in dictatorship and corruption.

Oleksandr Novikov:

We didn't want to rapprochement with Russia.

Oleksandr Novikov:

We fought for the values of individual freedom and democracy.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Ukraine society demanded reforms and fight against corruption, European

Oleksandr Novikov:

transatlantic integration, and it is the reason why Russia tried to occupy Ukraine.

Adrienne Ross:

In 2020, and you talked about this just a little bit, there

Adrienne Ross:

was a constitutional crisis and a lot of the anti-corruption reform

Adrienne Ross:

that had been put into place before then was declared unconstitutional.

Adrienne Ross:

What happened and can you talk a little bit about what President

Adrienne Ross:

Zelensky's response was to that?

Oleksandr Novikov:

October 27, uh, 2022, marked two years since

Oleksandr Novikov:

this notorious decision of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine was made.

Oleksandr Novikov:

It affected Ukraine's declaration system, blocked the work of NACP for

Oleksandr Novikov:

three months, and created the entire anti-corruption infrastructure.

Oleksandr Novikov:

October 27 will forever go down in our modern history as a black

Oleksandr Novikov:

day, not only for NACP, but also for Ukrainian statehood itself.

Oleksandr Novikov:

It was a disaster from the perspective of stability and security of the state.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Because corruption is one of the biggest internal threats to our state,

Oleksandr Novikov:

and it was a day when citizen might lose and lost control over the public

Oleksandr Novikov:

service and lost its accountability.

Oleksandr Novikov:

And the Parliament resolves the problem in a constitutional way,

Oleksandr Novikov:

and the president supported and promulgated the parliament's decision.

Oleksandr Novikov:

This case is one of the good examples of how the democratic institutions

Oleksandr Novikov:

in Ukraine works for the public good.

Adrienne Ross:

President Zelensky has been very public about

Adrienne Ross:

anti-corruption activity in Ukraine.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Yes, absolutely correct.

Oleksandr Novikov:

And the President agenda is anti-corruption agenda.

Oleksandr Novikov:

That is why we are so effective even in this wartime because we increase our level

Oleksandr Novikov:

of integrity uh, for the last three year.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Our parliament wrote it five months ago, uh, the second anti-corruption

Oleksandr Novikov:

strategy in the history of Ukraine.

Oleksandr Novikov:

And our government will sign the data and corruptions plan of the

Oleksandr Novikov:

implementation of the strategy until the end of the December.

Oleksandr Novikov:

And it's very important thing for our way to the culture of integrity.

Adrienne Ross:

In some of your public speaking engagements you've talked

Adrienne Ross:

about new digital tools Ukraine has introduced to combat corruption.

Adrienne Ross:

Can you share a little bit about what you're using and

Adrienne Ross:

why it's become effective.

Oleksandr Novikov:

For today, Ukraine is the champion in tools of anti-corruption.

Oleksandr Novikov:

In Ukraine, we have a special tool for each article of United Nations

Oleksandr Novikov:

Convention against corruption, and we are the only one country in the world

Oleksandr Novikov:

that have such big success in this path.

Oleksandr Novikov:

The NACP not only a center of executive body with a special status responsible

Oleksandr Novikov:

for development to corruption policy and preventing corruption in Ukraine.

Oleksandr Novikov:

The NACP aims to be a change leader and inspires other government

Oleksandr Novikov:

agencies to build effective and innovative public service institution.

Oleksandr Novikov:

One strategic task on this path is digital transformation inside NACP.

Oleksandr Novikov:

The NACP infrastructure includes many products as a follower

Oleksandr Novikov:

and register of declarations.

Oleksandr Novikov:

The NACP holds the world's largest digital database of civil servant assets.

Oleksandr Novikov:

It is the register of the declarations that was developed

Oleksandr Novikov:

with the support of UNDP.

Oleksandr Novikov:

The registry is quite a unique tool.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Every year, up to one million officials submit their declarations

Oleksandr Novikov:

to the agency registry.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Each of these documents is available to the public.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Each is also verified methodically, showing if the public official stated

Oleksandr Novikov:

accurate information on their assets.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Second, register of political party report polling data.

Oleksandr Novikov:

In 2020, assent to cooperation with International Foundation for Electoral

Oleksandr Novikov:

Systems (IFES), and USAID, and NACP launched public data registry, simplify

Oleksandr Novikov:

the reporting process for political parties and provides better access

Oleksandr Novikov:

for citizens to the financial data of political parties operating in Ukraine.

Oleksandr Novikov:

And this register is most modern in the world.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Unfortunately, since the beginning of the war, public access to the most of

Oleksandr Novikov:

our IT products has been restricted for security reasons, as you understand.

Oleksandr Novikov:

In addition to our normal IT tools, the war on sanction portal was created

Oleksandr Novikov:

with the Minister of Foreign Affairs.

Oleksandr Novikov:

The war on sanctions database is the most significant global database on

Oleksandr Novikov:

Russian PEPs and sanctions imposed in Russian individuals and companies

Oleksandr Novikov:

following Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Oleksandr Novikov:

The database was developed to provide Ukraine's allies and partners

Oleksandr Novikov:

abroad with valuable insights and leads on sanction targets.

Adrienne Ross:

So you're doing all this work in the middle of a war.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Yes.

Oleksandr Novikov:

And is very motivated to move to victory as quick as possible.

Oleksandr Novikov:

The hardest part of my job is to create conditions for my employees because,

Oleksandr Novikov:

uh, we have a problem with electricity.

Oleksandr Novikov:

They have problems, uh, with water, have a problems with logistics.

Oleksandr Novikov:

And the second biggest issue is to motivate my team, uh, work twenty-four

Oleksandr Novikov:

hours and seven days a week.

Adrienne Ross:

I would imagine your team has become very close.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Of course, more close than every time before.

Adrienne Ross:

So what is the best part?

Oleksandr Novikov:

We are the only one government body in Ukraine that, uh,

Oleksandr Novikov:

have ERP system, Enterprise Resource Planning system, and we can, uh,

Oleksandr Novikov:

sign the documents or have discussion or, or our working issues online.

Oleksandr Novikov:

I can sign the letter even to the prime minister or president

Oleksandr Novikov:

from any place in the world.

Oleksandr Novikov:

So we have all resources to be resilient and to work from any place in the world.

Adrienne Ross:

So maybe the best part of your job has been to be so resilient and

Adrienne Ross:

resourceful in this terrible environment?

Oleksandr Novikov:

We understand that as a governed body, we, in this 21

Oleksandr Novikov:

century, is like IT company and have to work and to change very quickly.

Adrienne Ross:

What role will you play or your team will play in the reconstruction?

Oleksandr Novikov:

The role of NACP in rebuilding Ukraine is to ensure the

Oleksandr Novikov:

appropriate function of the institutional arrangements aimed at integrity and

Oleksandr Novikov:

minimization of corruption risks.

Oleksandr Novikov:

This may include identifying corruption, risk in reconstruction-related areas,

Oleksandr Novikov:

conducting their anti-corruption expertise of draft laws, aimed at

Oleksandr Novikov:

regulating in the reconstruction process, doing due diligence and verifying

Oleksandr Novikov:

the corruption management systems of companies seeking contracts to implement

Oleksandr Novikov:

reconstruction related projects.

Oleksandr Novikov:

We have already analyzed the draft National Recovery Plan and provided

Oleksandr Novikov:

comprehensive suggestions on minimizing corruption risks when implementing it.

Oleksandr Novikov:

In these activities, we coordinate our work with civil society, particularly

Oleksandr Novikov:

with vice, the coalition of about two dozen NGOs working in public

Oleksandr Novikov:

procurement and anti-corruption.

Adrienne Ross:

What is it like for you personally to have this

Adrienne Ross:

job and to be doing this work now?

Oleksandr Novikov:

Only if we will have these risk management systems

Oleksandr Novikov:

here in Ukraine, we will have enough resources for our quick victory.

Oleksandr Novikov:

So our role is very important, and that is why we cannot stop even for one hour.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Ukrainians always live between east and west.

Oleksandr Novikov:

So to be alive, we have to be brave and we have to build networks very quick.

Oleksandr Novikov:

And now we feel us as a part of free world.

Oleksandr Novikov:

And that is why we have no other answers on the issue of this war.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Only one answer.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Victory.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Freedom.

Oleksandr Novikov:

And we have enough bravery and enough networks, networking

Oleksandr Novikov:

skills to uh, have this victory.

Adrienne Ross:

Excellent.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Ukraine has proven that it is an integral part of the democratic

Oleksandr Novikov:

world despite the war and Russia's desire to destroy our country and democracy.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Ukraine continues its public integrity and anti-corruption work, taking

Oleksandr Novikov:

new and completing initial steps.

Oleksandr Novikov:

And that is why we will win this war.

Adrienne Ross:

Oleksandr "Alex" Novikov, Ukraine's National Agency on

Adrienne Ross:

Corruption Prevention Chairman, thank you so much for joining us today.

Oleksandr Novikov:

Thank you for your time and for this interview.

Adrienne Ross:

Polling shows that Ukrainians identify tackling

Adrienne Ross:

corruption alongside restoring the country's territorial integrity

Adrienne Ross:

as their top two priorities.

Adrienne Ross:

And as Alex makes it clear, continued anti-corruption reform

Adrienne Ross:

is crucial to Ukraine's future prosperity and political integrity.

Adrienne Ross:

Don't forget to check the show notes for the links to the

Adrienne Ross:

study and other resources.

Adrienne Ross:

This marks the end of Democracy!

e Podcast Defending Democracy:

Ukraine.

e Podcast Defending Democracy:

I hope this limited series has taken you behind the headlines and

e Podcast Defending Democracy:

given you a deeper understanding of what's at risk in Eastern Europe.

e Podcast Defending Democracy:

For as you now know, this is not the story of two states, but is

e Podcast Defending Democracy:

in fact, a war of two systems, authoritarianism versus democracy, and

e Podcast Defending Democracy:

a war freedom can't afford to lose.

e Podcast Defending Democracy:

Ahead in the next episode, season two continues.

e Podcast Defending Democracy:

We'll hear what it takes to cement progress in the world's democratic

e Podcast Defending Democracy:

bright spots and what we can learn from their triumphs over tyranny.

e Podcast Defending Democracy:

Democracy!

e Podcast Defending Democracy:

The Podcast is brought to you by the Consortium for Elections and

e Podcast Defending Democracy:

Political Process Strengthening through the Democratic Elections Political

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Processes Cooperative Agreement.

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And is made possible by the generous support of the American people

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through the United States Agency for International Development.

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Opinions expressed here are those of the hosts and the guests, and do

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not necessarily reflect the views of USAID or the United States Government.

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This podcast is produced by Evo Terra and Sam Walker of Simpler Media Productions.

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For more information on Democracy!

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The Podcast, and to access the complete archives, please visit CEPPS.org/podcast.

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