Dead point of peaceful settlement in Donbas situation

Author : Ruslan Solvar

Source :

It is still a room for maneuver for Ukrainian diplomacy. First of all, it’s worth to focus exclusively on the performance of security component of Minsk agreement
22:45, 21 September 2016

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The recent visit of foreign ministers of Germany and France to Kyiv proved a rather unpleasant fact - a peaceful settlement of situation in Donbas can’t move forward from the dead point. Moreover, we should say that Europe, at present, has no clear plan of optimization of negotiations on this issue. The reasons of this are the stalemate in eastern Ukraine, and the internal problems of the EU.

First of all, it should take into account the fact that politicians in France and Germany are awaiting parliamentary and presidential elections. Most experts give a lower chance of re-election to the current leader Francois Hollande. Significant failures in internal politics forced him to focus on the foreign issues, but, again, without making drastic steps because French still remain ambiguous views on the participation of their special forces in Libya (especially against the background of a series of terrorist attacks).

Related: UNGA: Poroshenko about Russian military presence in Donbas

In a similar situation stays Angela Merkel. But in view of the forthcoming elections to the Bundestag we should consider not only the impact of migration, but also that the German foreign minister is one of the leaders of the Social Democratic Party - the traditional rival of CDU / CSU. So you should keep in mind that Frank-Walter Steinmeier, holding position on the exceptional fulfillment of the Minsk agreements rather than on attempts to optimize the existing state of affairs, has the desire to build his own political capital.

In general, we should understood that ineffectual visit of heads of German and French foreign ministries is not a disaster for national diplomacy, but for the first time it publicly confirming the presence of contradictions between Ukraine and the EU. Especially we should pay attention to the fact that neither Steinmeier nor Hérault in no way used an ultimatum when discussing the further process of peace in Donbas.

Related: Gerashchenko: MEPs ‘shocked’ at meeting former hostages in Donbas and their families

Therefore, it is still a room for maneuver for Ukrainian diplomacy. First of all, it’s worth to focus exclusively on the performance of the security component of the Minsk agreement, and only then – on political. And again, the Kremlin and its controlled territories called the DPR and LPR gave reasons to accuse them of disrupting the plans of settlement, because as early as Friday it became known about the shelling of Ukrainian forces by militants despite the proclaimed truce.

Thus, in this situation the Ukrainian diplomacy should remain calm and refrain from hasty steps, but at the same time should avoid the gradual "freezing" of conflict in the east, the danger of which is seen during the further deepening of the existing stalemate situation.

Related: Poroshenko discusses Donbas conflict with Danish Foreign Minister

Related: Zhebrivsky: EU diplomats will remember what Russia did in Donbas


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