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Friday, February 16, 2018

Berlin at a crossroads: whether Germany will support the Russian resolution on peacekeepers

Russia’s permanent representative to the UN, Vasily Nebenzia said that Washington and Kiev have refused to work on the text of a resolution on the deployment of peacekeepers in the Donbas, initiated by Vladimir Putin. Ukraine, he said, can even imagine your own version of the mandate “blue helmets”, which surely will include the item on admission of armed forces to the entire territory of DPR and LPR, including the border with Russia.

photo: AP

Initially, according to the Russian text of the resolution, the peacekeepers could only be located on the demarcation line troops to make a serious push to the end of the civil war in Eastern Ukraine. However, a week earlier, a telephone conversation between Vladimir Putin and Angela Merkel about the idea of the Kremlin. The Russian President agreed with the proposal of the German Chancellor on the extension of the mandate of the peacekeepers, so they also acted as armed guards members of the OSCE monitoring mission. However, even new paragraphs of the resolution are not satisfied with the United States and Ukraine, as Washington continues to stick to their line.

Experts told the “MK” Berlin is ready to go against Washington and the Russian resolution a stumbling block in the relations between Europe and the States.

Denis DENISOV, Director of the Institute for peace initiatives and conflict

“Talking about the split between America and Europe it is premature, it is necessary to wait until the end of the process. I think that talking about the positive attitude of Berlin to the Russian initiative, prematurely, but at least he is willing to discuss it, because the original idea about putting a protection for the representatives of the OSCE mission came from Germany. In the framework of this proposal, and there were various options on this theme from different countries. That Ukraine and the United States refused to Russian offers is not news. Kiev had previously stated about the preparation of their own version of the typing of the armed contingent. However, if Germany during the discussion, support of the Russian basic concept, it can naturally cause very great dissatisfaction among our overseas partners. It will be interesting to see how the foreign policy of Berlin at the moment, independent of us positions. If Germany can defend their point of view, it is already possible to say that the EU has already formed its own independent position. I also doubt that Moscow its proposal wanted to try to derange the relations between Europe and the United States. The basic idea of Vladimir Putin was to move from a dead point of the Minsk agreement and stop the bloodshed in the Donbass. Here we are talking not about entering the “blue helmets”, and the provision of armed security to the OSCE monitoring mission. It is soft and passable resolution which may be adopted by the UN security Council only if any of the permanent members, and we can guess who will not impose his veto on such a decision, which is quite likely.”

Sergei MARKOV, Director of Institute of political researches:

“I don’t think that Germany clearly spoke for the support of one or another version. Regarding her position was a lot of conflicting information. On the one hand, the press Secretary of the state Department stated that Berlin follows the American approach to the deployment of peacekeepers on Dornase, and on the other hand, the foreign Minister of Germany, Sigmar Gabriel, believes that the Russian offer should be approached with full responsibility. Personally, I assume that this is due to the internal rift within Germany of which Berlin has still not defined its position clear on this issue. This is due primarily to the upcoming elections. Policy think first of all of them. Gabriel understands that he will likely leave the government, which apparently will consist of Christian Democrats with virtually no social Democrats. Realizing this Gabriel builds its future position and builds his own political fate to present as a speaker or even as the leader of the social democratic party. Based on these positions it will be to criticize the foreign policy of Angela Merkel, because it suggests that it would support the American proposal. With regards to the common European position, not only in Germany, Brussels is yet to be clearly decided who he is going to support, no one spoke specifically about this.”

Mikhail POGREBINSKY, Director of Kiev center of political researches and conflictology:

Vladimir Putin with Angela Merkel only discussed the issue of deployment of peacekeepers, which it supported, but directly on points of the Russian version of the resolution of the question. As I understand it, they only discussed the General situation and the idea. Moreover, a few days earlier the official representative of the leaders of Germany, Ulrika Demmer declared that armed troops should get access to the entire territory of the Republic. In this regard, to say that Berlin supports Russia’s resolution is premature. Will also be interested in the position of France, which in the near future we already know. In any case, Ukraine does not accept the Russian version, as Kiev wants to gain control over all the territories of the DNI and the LC, which is supported by the US. Peacekeepers of the UN first stand on the borders and then will give them to Ukraine. This is absolutely contrary to the aims of Moscow, wishing to respect the Minsk agreements that were amended to the Constitution regarding special status for the unrecognized republics, and after that was transferred to the control of the border. I see no possibility of compromise between these two objectives because Washington’s proposal for entering the “blue helmets” will not find support from Russia and possibly China”.

The Ukrainian crisis. Chronicle of events

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