KARACHI: Dr Olena Bordilovska, an associate professor at the Institute of International Relations of the Kyiv Taras Shevchenko National University- Ukraine, talked on ‘Foreign Policy of Independent Ukraine’ recently at Pakistan Institute of International Affairs. She has written as many as 70 research articles, including one on the Kashmir issue and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Some of the highlights of these presentation are as follow:
- A lot of Pakistani students are studying medicine and engineeringin universities of Ukraine. There was also an MOU signed between Quaid-i-Azam University (Islamabad) and Kyiv Taras Shevchenko National University- Ukraine.
- We had said our final goodbye to communism 25 years ago and Ukraine is now a liberal democratic set-up where communism is prohibited but still the older generation misses the socialist policies when they were offered free healthcare and education.
- Pakistan Army’s Al-Khalid tank has Ukrainian transmissions.
- Ukrainian soldiers have served in peacekeeping missions in the past, but now we are reducingour participation in such activities, as now the country has its own conflicts to look into.
- Formerly, we were the bread basket of the USSR, but, today we can feed the people with our agricultural produce. Our sunflower oil is imported by Pakistan. On the other hand, Pakistan’s citrus fruits are growing very well in Ukraine.
- We also had a common friend in the Muslim scholar Allama Mohammad Asad, who played a part in the penning of Pakistan’s Constitution. He was from the part of Austria which is now in Ukraine.
- GUAM Organisation for Democracy and Economic Development, which has four members – Georgia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan and Moldova promoted democratic values and worked to enhance regional security while looking forward to European integration.
- Then, there were also pressures from the world on Ukraine with our nuclear weapons, as we could not be trusted as a peaceful country. So, we gave it all up, which many now say was a mistake on our part.
- In the recent annexation, Russia had occupied 12 per cent of Ukrainian territory and killed 10,000 of Ukrainian citizens from 2014 to 2017. But, these conflicts have made our army stronger. We are the eight largest army in Europe, in strength.
- We want to be considered a part of the European Union, because we are in Europe.Ukrainian youth hoped to be a part of the European Union someday.