Prime Minister Medvedev, who has been as silent on the issue of Ukraine and its territorial integrity as his boss President Putin, chose an odd venue when he finally decided to make his statement. He, or likely one of his secretaries, made a post [ru] on his Facebook account, which has already gathered over 5,000 replies, 6,000 likes and 3,000 shares. In it he made several statements, the oddest of which was this:
Да, авторитет президента Януковича практически ничтожен, но это не отменяет того факта, что по Конституции Украины он – легитимный глава государства.
Yes, the authority President Yanukovich holds is practically nil, but that does not change the fact that, according the the Ukrainian Constitution, he is the legitimate head of the state.
He then proceeded to suggest that the Ukrainian Parliament should impeach Yanukovich, if that's what they want to do. This (valid) description of Yanukovich's authority led some Twitter users to comment on Medvedev's own flagging stature.
One tweet that has been retweeted over 150 times joked:
Дмитрия Медведева на время войны отвезли к бабушке
— AXT (@filin_pro) March 2, 2014
While the was is on, Medvedev is staying at his grandma's
Another blogger tweeted:
И Медведев нашёл того, кто ещё более жалок, и всё пытается попрыгать на политическом трупе. http://t.co/OzLeSQS3zo
— Сергей Д (@sd0107) March 2, 2014
Medvedev found someone who was even more pitiful than his is, and keeps trying to jump on the political corpse.
Others noted that a legitimate president with zero authority is an “oxymoron [ru].”Meanwhile, Medvedev finished his Facebook post by calling Ukraine a “destitute relative”:
России нужна сильная и стабильная Украина. Предсказуемый и экономически состоятельный партнер. А не бедный родственник, вечно стоящий с протянутой рукой.
Russia needs a strong and stable Ukraine. A predictable and an economically sound partner. Not a destitute relative, forever waiting for handouts.
The replies to the post start off on a positive note (“Yes, I agree” and “Well said”), but quickly become criticism of Russia's position in Ukraine and the ostensible intervention in the Crimea. Medvedev, or his press team, has yet to respond to any of them.