Minsk – ceasefire or start of surrender

Minsk – ceasefire or start of surrender

Nato’s 2014 summit in Wales, UK, concluded with a resolution which included a firm commitment to Article 5 of Nato’s charter guaranteeing to defend any member. Ukraine, which is not a Nato member, won lots of words of support. But the summit made clear, that Nato will go no further - Nato troops will not defend Ukraine, writes Prince Michael of Liechtenstein.

Ukraine’s army is not strong enough to stop the separatist attacks which are strongly supported by Russian armed forces. Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko and his delegation in Minsk had no choice, as a result of Nato’s decision, but to more-or-less accept the Russian conditions for a ceasefire.

What will happen now? Certainly it is good, if - and the ‘if’ is important - the bloodshed stops.

However, that is the only positive side.

For the rest, there are just question marks. It is very unlikely, that Ukraine will retain its integrity. Real danger exists of internal conditions similar to Bosnia, where the civil conflict was perpetuated. This conflict has not happened in Ukraine up to now. But Russian agitation combined with amateurish and selfish behaviour of Western politics could inflame it.

Ukraine holds national elections for the Kiev parliament in October. How will these be organised in the separatist areas? Will the extreme Ukraine nationalists, as opposed to the separatists, be strengthened by frustration over the Minsk ceasefire?

Most important of all: What will happen to Ukraine’s economy? Western support is lacklustre, insufficient and conditional. Ukraine’s current economic crisis is extremely serious. It appears the West is neither able nor willing to assume the necessary financial burden.

Unfortunately, Ukraine could fall back into a situation of permanent crisis and corruption. This will increase its dependence on Russia.

Bravo for the European Union’s Eastern Partnership!

Bravo too for US President Barack Obama’s non-existent foreign policy strategy.

The chess player in the Kremlin has proved to be the master.

GIS has warned consistently in its reports and statements over a long period that it is surprising that Western leaders are not more analytical or have greater foresight. GIS will continue to analyse and report. The scenarios, however, are bleak.

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Thank you Mr Putin

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