Kerry, Russian FM Agree to Push Constitutional Reforms in Ukraine

No Details on What Reforms Will Look Like

According to the Russian Foreign Ministry, Sergey Lavrov and US Secretary of State John Kerry have agreed to press Ukraine for “constitutional reforms.” No details were provided on what sort of reforms these might be.

We can only guess that the major issue will be the legitimacy of the unelected “interim” government, installed by protesters at the end of weeks of clashes in Kiev. Russia has refused to recognize them, while the US endorsed them pretty much immediately.

Another constitutional issue is the secession of Crimea, which took place last week in the Crimean parliament. Crimea held a referendum today calling on the nation to join Russia, approved by an overwhelming margin.

The State Department spun the deal as a partial pullback by Russia, and suggested the Russians might be willing to stop short of full annexation of the Crimea. That may be a tough sell for Russia’s parliament, especially after such a strong endorsement in the referendum.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.