Irina Vereshchuk: under whose umbrella is the new Minister of Territories Reintegration “flying”?
Failing to conquer Kyiv, Mary Poppins was appointed to return the Donbass.
The latest personnel appointments in the government cause confusion and questions among many Ukrainians. Why was it necessary to change the personnel general Taran for a reserve sergeant Reznikov, and even against the backdrop of another expectation of a Russian invasion? And why was appointed the new Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Reintegration of the Temporarily Occupied Territories Irina Vereshchuk, which has the most distant relation to these territories, in whose summary of politics there are only continuous failures?
Basically, Vereshchuk is known to Ukrainians as a regular participant in television talk shows, as well as a candidate from the Servant of the People in the last election of the mayor of Kyiv, which she lost miserably. And observant viewers must have noticed that this is practically the only Ukrainian woman politician who has never flaunted her cleavage: Vereshchuk is always distinguished by collars fastened in a military way to the very throat. In the era of universal female “nakedness”, this already attracts attention, and politics also gives seriousness and respectability. And yet, one should not judge vice-premiers only by their appearance...
Childhood, youth, husbands
Irina Andreevna Vereshchuk (nee Lutsik) was born on November 30, 1979 in the small town of Rava-Russkaya, Nesterovsky (now Zhovkovsky) district, Lviv region, and was the youngest daughter (her sister Olga is 6 years older). Dad worked as a foreman at one of the oblenergo enterprises (engaged in power lines), and my mother was a salesman in the meat department, their family was friendly and did not know any particular need. And yet they sent Irina to study at a local boarding school, where she spent time from morning until evening, coming home only to sleep. According to Irina herself, the reason was a certain busyness of her parents, the details of which she did not provide. But did the manager and the salesman really stay up late at work? Perhaps the point was that since the late 80s, some residents of the border Rava-Ruska engaged in "shuttle commerce", bringing goods from Poland, and therefore did not go home for several days.
Now Vereshchuk believes that this only benefited her, since being in a team of orphans and children from problem families taught her survival (for this she had to do martial arts) and independence. Therefore, she is not lost in any company all her life.
She graduated from boarding school with a gold medal - apparently, being the only excellent student in her class. This is a good bonus for entering the best universities in the country, but Irina Lutsik used it in a somewhat strange way, choosing the Lviv Military Institute. In Soviet times, it was the Lviv Higher Military-Political School, which since 1992 received the status of a combined arms institute and was attached to the Lviv Polytechnic University, and in 2009 President Yushchenko raised its status to the Academy of the Ground Forces.
Cadet Irina Lutsik (Vereshchuk)
In her interviews, she claimed that her father's dream of becoming a general and a school excursion (as part of the DPY) to the Yavorivsky training ground, where she threw a training grenade and shot from something, influenced her choice. That's just her main military specialty is a translator and "international information", plus she received the qualification of a "tactical-level military command officer" (that is, an employee of the headquarters of a military unit). She probably excelled in foreign languages more than in the sciences and throwing grenades! However, nothing is known about the next five years of her service in the Armed Forces of Ukraine (2002-2007), she did not even tell where exactly she was.
But during this time, Irina Lutsik graduated from the Faculty of Law of Lviv University. Ivana Franko (apparently in absentia), married first military husband Igor Vereshchuk (in 2004 their son Oleg was born), divorced, keeping his last name, and found herself a second one (they did not sign), which was the gallant SBU officer Mikhail Kukharenko. The one who, under the “servants of the people”, became the deputy head of the center of the Alfa SSC, and fell under a squall harsh criticism “volunteers” who accused Kukharenko of links with the FSB, the collapse of Alfa and called him “canned cotton and mediocrity.”
Mayor of Rava-Ruska
Having retired from the service in May 2007 (along with her studies at the institute, this gave her 10 years of military experience), Irina Vereshchuk got a job as a lawyer in the Rava-Russian City Council. A year later, she entered the Lviv Regional Institute at the National Academy of Public Administration (NAGU), in 2009 she did an internship at the Secretariat of the Cabinet of Ministers, and was included in the government personnel reserve. Why did the modest lawyer of the City Council need this? Was Vereshchuk preparing in advance (or was she being prepared) to win the 2010 mayoral election?
But before that, Vereshchuk worked for 4 months (from June to October 2010) as deputy head of the Zhovkovsky Regional State Administration. Moreover, she received it a few days after the new president Viktor Yanukovych fired the former head of the district, Mikhail Zabolotsky judged then for bribes) and appointed Vladimir Voloshin instead, the then chairman of the regional organization of the Party of Regions.
In the local elections of 2010, Irina Vereshchuk ran for Labor Ukraine and won, replacing the former "orange" mayor of Rava-Ruska Alla Soprun - who was "crushed" by accusations of corruption so that she refused to participate in the elections. At the same time, one of the main slogans of Vereshchuk then was the decentralization of power, that is, a favorite topic of the Regions. And in 2011, she was even awarded the medal "20 Years of Independence of Ukraine" by President Yanukovych. Later, Vereshchuk made excuses that she allegedly did not know how she got on the award list and accepted the award under duress. And in the same year, she entered the graduate school of the Lviv Regional Institute of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, which she graduated in 2015.
There are conflicting opinions about the activities of Irina Vereshchuk as mayor of Rava-Ruska. She is remembered for her project of cycling across the border and the installation of biofuel (pellet) boiler houses with EU money. But others remember Vereshchuk as a defendant in a number of scandals. For example, her predecessor Alla Soprun accused Vereshchuk in using the distribution of land for his own PR. Svoboda activist Nikolai Zinko, who took the mayor's chair in 2015 He claimedthat Vereshchuk was involved in a big scandal with more than 400 land plots. A big stain on her reputation was thrown by theft: unknown people smashed the windshield (!) of the mayor's car and pulled out a handbag with 30 thousand dollars from there. The public decided that Vereshchuk could only receive such a sum as a bribe.
Some hinted at some shady schemes of the mayor of the border town and her common-law husband from the SBU at the Rava-Russkaya customs post. And they even argued this by her close friendship with Taras Kozak, the former head of the Western Customs, who left for the Lviv Regional Council in 2010 and, according to Vereshchuk herself, did “many good deeds” for Rava-Russkaya. And in an interview with the X-Files program (2020), some residents of Rava-Russkaya strongly advised the people of Kiev not to elect Vereshchuk as their mayor, because she “sold half of Rava.”
Downs and ups
When the second Maidan began in Kyiv, Vereshchuk very quickly rebuilt her political line. Literally immediately, on behalf of the mayor of Rava-Ruska, she wrote an appeal to the European Parliament with a request to sign the Association with the community of her city. It is clear that this appeal could not be called serious, but for Vereshchuk, the main thing was to emphasize her "pro-European" against the backdrop of the beginning of a change of power in the country. And then for several years in her interviews, Vereshchuk always inserted some story about how she always considered Ukraine a European power and aspired to join the EU, how she went against the “Yanukovych regime”, etc. For example, like this:
“And suddenly Azarov announced that everything was being postponed. I heard about it when I was returning from a meeting in the area. Outraged: it can't be! I immediately dictated the text of the statement to my press secretary by phone and asked to put it on the website urgently: “Our community will not obey this. It's not possible with us. We will never join any "Taiga Union". She called the Russian Federation "a surrogate for the empire of evil." The next morning it caused such an uproar! The prosecutor arrived, said that a criminal investigation had been opened - about a call for separatism and the overthrow of the state system.
However, this did not help her to become one of her own for the national patriots, who previously and now consider her a “quilted jacket” and a “servant of Moscow”. In 2014, Vereshchuk tried to run for people's deputies in the 122nd majoritarian district, but was met with a completely cold attitude of voters. True, they didn’t throw mud and paint on her billboards, but they added “horns” to it. As a result, Vereshchuk won only 4,46% of the votes, and the victory went to the well-known Maidan participant Volodymyr Parasyuk. Upset Vereshchuk wrote then: “So what if you repaired roofs, built children's and sports grounds. Here the hero will come and lead! Yes, never in my life. Unfortunate is the country that is led by heroes!
After that, Veruschuk suffered the same fate as her predecessor Soprun had in her time. They began to put pressure on her both from the political side, calling her a relic of the Yanukovych regime, even Kozak's mistress, and from the side of the law, accusing her of corruption. She was unable to assemble her own team, she did not find support, and therefore she refused to participate in the local elections of 2015, losing the initiative to the national patriots. And she herself took up personal “European integration”.
Realizing that nothing would shine for her in the camp of the "patriots of Ukraine", Vereshchuk decided to rehabilitate herself through her connections with the West. In 2015, she received a scholarship from the Polish-American Freedom Foundation and took a course at the Center for Eastern European Studies at the University of Warsaw, and a year later received a diploma from the Polish National School of Public Administration. In February 2016, she was even brought to Washington to participate in a “prayer breakfast” with the participation of Bark Obama (sponsor remained unknown).
At the same time, Vereshchuk became the president of the public organization "International Center for Baltic-Black Sea Studies and Consensus Practices." The national patriots claimed that this organization was allegedly financed by Medvedchuk, and also indicated that it was collaborating with Leonid Kuchma (as ex-president), whom Vereshchuk publicly expressed respect for more than once.
Sun Stone and Sun Sect
The ostentatious protests against the abandonment of the Association did not prevent Irina Vereshchuk from becoming a partner in the LLC in the same 2013 "Ukrainian Amber Exchange" the then head of the Rivne Regional State Administration Vasily Bertash (now the head of the regional organization of the Opposition Platform for Life). Moreover, they remained partners until May 2019, after which the company was rewritten to other persons. And in 2017, Vereshchuk worked for several months as the director of Center Solnechnoye Meslo LLC, which was engaged in the extraction of amber.
Given the considerable distance from Rava-Ruska to Rivne, the question arises: did Irina Vereshchuk come to the amber business only through her connections in the Party of Regions, or did someone else participate in this - for example, her common-law husband from the SBU? After all, the two of them generally do a lot of things - even supposedly both are in the same sect! At least, some journalists and bloggers accuse her of this.
The AllatRa movement was founded in 2014 in Kyiv by followers of some “warriors of light”, and absorbed a rich mixture of various theosophy, mysticism, fragments of Eastern religions, etc. The media reported that some details of the infamous "White Brotherhood", and that allegedly Maria Tsvigun (former Maria-Devi-Christos) was involved in its creation. Anti-Maidan activists and the former leader of the "DPR" Zakharchenko were also called supporters of the sect. And by information journalists of "Penny", in the books of this sect it is stated that the world is ruled by evil "archons" from the United States, but they will be defeated by the united Slavs led by Putin, who bears the sacred name of Nomo.
Nevertheless, AllatRa has its own internet TV channel, whose journalists are accredited in BP. And so Irina Vereshchuk went on to give several positive interviews to the TV channel, and then became a guest of his studio. Then the media literally exploded information bomb that Vereshchuk is allegedly a supporter of AllatRa, and her common-law husband Mikhail Kukharenko is spreading the ideas of this sect in the SBU and Alfa. And even in the DobroTeam charitable foundation, which Vereshchuk managed until May 2020, they saw a connection with the Dobrota festivals held annually by AllatRa.
But is it really so? Perhaps this is nothing more than a "black PR" used by political opponents. So far, one thing is officially known: Irina Vereshchuk has been a faithful Greek Catholic since childhood.
It is worth noting that Irina Vereshchuk was also accused of frequent interviews and participation in talk shows on the TV channels 112, NewsOne, Zik, although she had been their “star” since 2015, and Kozak bought them only in 2018-2019. By the way, she does not count their pro-Russian! And the odious center "Peacemaker" blamed Vereshchuk is in “connections with Russian propagandists” Iskander Khisanov (chief editor of Ukraina.ru) and Vitaly Leybin (editor of Russian Reporter), with whom she allegedly communicates via instant messengers."Fairy" for Zelensky
Against the backdrop of these accusations, Irina Vereshchuk began to be called “Medvedchuk’s man in the Servant of the People,” they even started a rumor that he paid two million dollars for her inclusion in the electoral list! Such rumors were believed because the story of Vereshchuk's appearance in Zelensky's team was rather dark. Suddenly it turned out that no one knows how she got there. She herself claimed that she was invited Dmitry Razumkovwhom she met on a talk show. However, it is worth agreeing that the place given to her No. 29 in the list of "Servants of the People" is too high for casual acquaintances! Yes, and the portfolio of the head of the subcommittee of state security and defense for the starley translator was too heavy. But so far, the name of her lobbyist remains unknown. It is only obvious that this is not Nikolai Tishchenko or Andrey Ermak, with whom Vereshchuk clearly did not have a relationship (she even sent Tishchenko in three letters).
But it is very difficult to draw deep conclusions from Vereshchuk's statements or even actions, because she often radically changes her position. So, from September 4 to November 15, 2019, she was a representative of the Honcharuk government in the Verkhovna Rada - and when this government began to be removed in February 2020, Vereshchuk began to fiercely criticize the then prime minister.
But President Zelensky’s special attitude towards Vereshchuk became clear after the primaries of the “servants of the people” in July 2020, which determined a single candidate who would challenge Klitschko in the election of the capital’s mayor. Then, as everyone remembers, the “servants” almost quarreled with each other, because Alexander Dubinsky was actually running his election campaign (and he had the best chances), and Tishchenko began to hang billboards around the city with his face.
But Zelensky personally insisted on the candidacy of Vereshchuk, although this was far from the best option - if only because the people of Kiev knew her little, mainly from compromising rumors. Even Tishchenko and Yermak did not argue with the president, and Vereshchuk decided to literally raise her popularity with the help of a commercial depicting her as Mary Poppins, who had flown in to save the capital.
The people of Kiev rated these efforts at 5,44% of the vote, and this was not only the defeat of Vereshchuk. In fact, the Zelensky team suffered a catastrophe, which means not only the collapse of their hopes to take control of the capital's power, but also the loss of support for the president among the voters of Kyiv. And no one would be surprised if after that Irina Vereshchuk fell into disgrace, and the same Tishchenko would rush to recoup her. But it turned out exactly the opposite: Zelensky’s sympathy for his “fairy” did not decrease at all. The war that broke out later between the president and the speaker did not affect them either (if you believe that it was Razumkov who brought Vereshchuk to the team).
On June 15, 2021, on the air of Ukraine 24, Vereshchuk "announced" her possible appointment to the post of Minister of Defense. Her words caused a noticeable response: some joked that a female lieutenant at the head of the Ministry of Defense was another step on the way to Europe, while others indignantly cited Vereshchuk’s “anti-Ukrainian” and “pro-Russian” statements. Then the reshuffle in the Cabinet of Ministers was postponed, and in the autumn Sgt. Aleksey Reznikov became the new Minister of Defense. But his former position of Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Reintegration was given to Irina Vereshchuk - and again on this personally insisted Zelensky himself.
Since the date of her appointment, the new minister has not expressed her intention to change the policy of her predecessors, who actually failed the reintegration process. Her usage plan Soft power this is the same propaganda of "Ukrainian values" as before, only in profile. Actually, it makes no difference whether these "values" are imposed by threats or persuasion - the problem is that these "values" simply do not want to be accepted by the majority of residents of uncontrolled territories. But in Kyiv they do not want to understand this - or they simply do not want to understand.
In the meantime, the people regard the appointment of Iryna Vereshchuk as Deputy Prime Minister, who still remains for many a symbol of the defeat of the “servants of the people” in the capital, as the approaching collapse of Zelensky himself.
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