Cover Osteuropa 3-4/2020

In Osteuropa 3-4/2020

In crisis mode
Fighting the pandemic in Ukraine

Juri Durkot

Deutsche Fassung


The Ukrainian government insisted at an early stage that the country was well equipped to deal with the corona virus. In reality, the health system is almost entirely incapable of dealing with a pandemic. The medical infrastructure is inadequate, doctors and nursing staff are underpaid and there is not enough personal protective equipment in the hospitals. At the end of March 2020, the cabinet declared a state of emergency. President Zelensky is exploiting the crisis in order to concentrate political power in his hands. This is a risky step, since in doing so, he is assuming sole responsibility for the handling of the pandemic. Due to his dwindling political support and the precarious economic situation, he has only limited room for manoeuvre.

(Osteuropa 3-4/2020, pp. 111–122)