Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dimitro Kuleba assured this Wednesday that Russia “has no right to divide Europe into“ zones of influence ”and that it has“ no right to vote ”to determine the“ nature ”of relations between Kiev and the European Union (EU).
“I would like to emphasize that Ukraine and the EU share the same opinion that Russia has no right to divide Europe into spheres of influence and to determine where, how and when the EU is enlarged and what kind of relations Ukraine and the EU have should. “said Kuleba at an informative meeting with the bloc’s high representative for foreign policy, Josep Borrell, during an official visit to the former Soviet republic.
Kuleba has indicated that Borrell “could see and feel the devastating consequences of the conflict unleashed by Russia in Donbass, as well as Ukraine’s efforts to end the war,” according to the Ukrainian news agency Ukrinform. In this regard, he noted that the representatives of the Joint Armed Forces of Ukraine had informed the head of European diplomacy about the “systematic” violations of the Minsk Agreement by Russia.
“Ukraine and the EU now face a task: to use diplomatic means to de-escalate the situation and get Moscow to ease tension and abandon its aggressive intentions,” he continued, assuring that they were working “systematically” to “To dissuade Russia from it”. . He assured that “of course one of the elements of this deterrent package is the preparation of new sanctions against Russia”.
He also thanked the EU and Borrell personally for Ukraine’s support in this situation. “We are stronger when we work on it together with the European Union,” he decided.
For his part, Borrell stressed that his first visit to eastern Ukraine was an “opportunity” to observe the consequences of the “dramatic conflict” against the backdrop of the threat of “deepening” the conflict.
“The conflict will worsen and tensions over European security as a whole have built,” he said, noting that Russia had gathered troops and weapons in “unusual ways” on the border with Ukraine. “This process was very quick,” he warned.
In doing so, she reaffirmed the EU’s “full support” for the independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine and reaffirmed that it will continue to work with Kiev on de-escalation.
“Our main interest, concern and purpose is to try to de-escalate tensions through negotiations,” he said. However, he once again emphasized that any military intervention against Ukraine “will have serious consequences and high costs”, which is why he is working on de-escalation with partners such as the USA and NATO and on full implementation of the Minsk agreements. “There is no security in Europe if there is no security in Ukraine,” he added.
The Donetsk and Lugansk provinces in eastern Ukraine have been experiencing an armed conflict between government troops and pro-Russian separatists for years, without international mediation efforts having made it possible to end the war.
The Minsk Agreements, signed in September 2014 and February 2015, laid the foundation for a political solution to the conflict, but have so far not led to an end to the violence, the result of which the United Nations reckons with around 13,000 deaths.
Tensions over Russia and Ukraine have risen in recent weeks amid international concerns over a possible Russian invasion of the territory. Russian President Vladimir Putin and US President Joe Biden discussed the matter on Thursday. Biden has threatened “unprecedented” economic sanctions in the event of a hypothetical attack, which the Kremlin has denied.