Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock has called for a diplomatic solution to the crisis between Russia and Ukraine, but has announced a resolute response otherwise. Before leaving for initial visits to Kiev and Moscow, the Greens politician said on Monday: “We are ready for a serious dialogue about mutual agreements and steps that will bring more security to everyone in Europe, including Russia.” But there could be no compromises on basic principles such as territorial inviolability, free choice of alliance and renunciation of the threat of violence.
Russia sees its security threatened by NATO and is therefore demanding an end to NATO’s eastward expansion and, in particular, a renunciation of Ukraine’s membership. The West, on the other hand, is alarmed by the Russian troop deployment near Ukraine.
Baerbock emphasized that they were “determined to react” if Russia went down the path of escalation. She wanted to meet with President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and her counterpart Dmytro Kuleba in the Ukrainian capital on Monday. A meeting with Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is scheduled for Tuesday in Moscow.
She will listen carefully to her interlocutors, “but also explain in all clarity the position that we in the EU, in the G7 and in the transatlantic alliance represent together,” Baerbock explained in view of the fruitless negotiations in various international formats. “I want to find out on site whether there is a willingness to find solutions through diplomatic channels – above all, to breathe life into the Normandy process again and finally make progress in implementing the Minsk agreements.” (dpa)
Source From: Tagesspiegel