A brawl broke out in the Ukrainian Parliament on Friday after a member of President Petro Poroshenko’s group, Oleh Barna, physically picked up Prime Minister Arseniy Yayseniuk and removed him from the podium. From there, members of Yayseniuk’s People Front Party came in swinging, throwing punches at Barna and pushing him.
At the time of the incident, Yayseniuk was trying to defend the questionable record of the Ukrainian government. During his ramblings, Barna came up carrying a bunch of red roses. He proceeded to grab Prime Minister Yayseniuk around the waist and groin in order to lift him up and drag him away. It was then that the members of the People Front Party stepped in.
The Prime Minister largely refused to comment on the situation, only saying that there were “a lot of morons” involved. Yayseniuk is currently facing a vote to determine whether or not the parliament has confidence in his government. A vote of no-confidence would oust Yayseniuk from his position. This vote has been indefinitely postponed following the laughable incident.
The Ukrainian government has been plagued by a series of corruption scandals and a slow pace of reforms. Many parliament members, including some within the ruling majority, have called for the ousting of Yayseniuk. Now that it has been shown that someone actually has the audacity to pick up the Prime Minister and literally carry him away, it is very unlikely that the embattled Yayseniuk has any shred of real support left.
But while the situation in the Ukrainian Parliament might be humorous, the broad situation in Ukraine is no laughing matter. Both the United States and the European Union are fearful that an ousting of Yayseniuk could plunge the unstable country into a major political crisis. The country has been continuing to battle Russian-supported separatists in the eastern regions of the country. Additionally, more instability could cause the International Monetary Fund to retract its $40 billion bailout support.
Needless to say, it looks like things are only going to get worse in Ukraine before they get better.