24 Dec 2018 18:36

Local councilors massively leaving Rukh of New Forces - Saakashvili's former associate

KYIV. Dec 24 (Interfax) - Ukrainian off-faction MP Yuriy Derevianko has decided to leave Mikheil Saakashvili's Rukh of New Forces party and has plans to continue his political activity in the Volya (Will) party.

"I decided to cease partnership with Mikheil Saakashvili in the Rukh of New Forces political party led by the latter and leave this party," Derevianko's press service quoted him as saying on Monday.

The same decision was made by 19 regional teams of Saakashvili's Rukh of New Forces and 90% of local councilors, the statement reads. Further on, the political team will continue its political activity in the Volya party.

The relevant decision was made at a forum of Derevianko's team that was held in Kyiv on December 24, the press service said. About 450 representatives from 100 Ukrainian cities attended the forum.

His termination of partnership with Saakashvili was mainly caused by the fact that they pursue different priorities, the politician said.

"This year I have taken a great effort for our team to become a genuinely powerful political force, which can lead the Ukrainian society and create a new agenda of the country. But it is impossible with this stance of partners. People from my team repeatedly demanded tough actions from me in this situation. But, this unfortunately became clear following all of our recent meetings that Georgia is a priority for Mikheil Saakashvili (and this is understandable, this is natural), and Ukraine has always been and is a priority for me," Derevianko said.

The Volya party was set up by activists of the civil sector of the Euro-Maidan in 2014 and merged with the Rukh of New Forces party on April 19, 2017, the press service of the politician said.