Who is MP Artemenko and why does he suggest giving up Crimea to Russia?

Who is MP Artemenko and why does he suggest giving up Crimea to Russia?

What happened. Last week Ukrainian MP, Andriy Artemenko from the Radical Party, passed the plan for normalization of relations between Ukraine and Russia to Trump’s former advisor Michael Flynn. The plan also aims to have the sanctions against Russia lifted. Artemenko claims to have also passed the proof of President Poroshenko’s corrupt actions to the Trump’s team.

What the Artemenko plan suggests. According to the suggested plan, Russian troops should be withdrawn from eastern Ukraine. A nationwide referendum should be held, where Ukraine citizens will decide if Crimea should be leased to Russia for 50 or 100 years.

Who’s behind the plan. Head of the Radical Party parliamentary faction Oleh Lyashko said that the plan reflects Artemenko’s personal position. Subsequently, the MP was expelled from the faction. Artemenko himself claims that the plan was initiated by the Radical Party. “I was authorized by Lyashko to travel to the US and conclude the ‘peace plan’,” Artemenko said at a press-briefing in the Parliament last week. The MP was also saying that the plan was pre-approved by the aides of the Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Who is Mr. Artemenko? Andriy Artemenko was little-known by the wide public. In the 90s he started several businesses. He was involved in provision of legal assistance to Ukrainian sportsmen who worked and performed abroad.

In 2002, he was charged with frauds as to the sports transfers and misuse of public money disbursed for the TsSKA football club. He was detained before the trial. In 2004 he was released. In 2006 he was campaigning at the elections to the Kyiv City Council as part of Yuliya Tymoshenko’s list. He was not largely seen in the Ukrainian politics until 2013.

During Euromaidan, Artemenko was taking part in the protests against then-president Viktor Yanukovych. He later joined the Right Sector movement. In spring 2014, he became part of the Right Sector party leadership team together with Dmytro Yarosh and Sashko Bily.

At the 2014 parliamentary elections Artemenko got a seat at the Rada as part of the Radical Party’s list. He was 16th in the party list. He later created an NGO “Solidarity of right forces” that has not become a party yet. According to his declaration, he has got four children, three of them are citizens of the US or Canada.