Conflicts & War

European diplomacy takes initiative to defuse Russian-Ukrainian tension

Moscow, Feb 6 (EFE).- European diplomacy are trying to take the initiative in the Russian-Ukrainian crisis as France and Germany seek to ease the tension and ward off the specter of war.

“Instead of forcing (the Ukrainians) to comply with the Minsk Agreements, the West has been scaring the world for several months with an alleged Russian invasion of Ukraine,” the program “Moscow. Kremlin. Putin” of the Russia-1 channel said.

This will take over the agenda of a Monday meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and his French counterpart, Emmanuel Macron, according to Russian public TV.

Macron will try to convince the Kremlin of the European countries’ concerns while security negotiations between the United States and Nato have focused almost all the attention of the Kremlin.

The French leader proposes a “new balance” to maintain peace and security on the continent while addressing the Kremlin’s concerns about Nato expansion.

Paris sees a kind of “flexibility” on the part of Putin, who has not yet said his last word in case the US and Nato refuse to offer security guarantees.

Putin, however, made it clear in his Friday meeting with Chinese leader Xi Jinping that he is unwilling to make many concessions in the tensions over Nato’s open-door policy.

Meanwhile, Germany’s Chancellor Olaf Scholz will first travel to Washington to meet with US President Joe Biden on Monday before hosting the Baltic countries in Berlin.

Both European powers want to strengthen the Normandy Format, until now the only meeting place between Putin and the Ukrainian leader, Volodymyr Zelenskyj.

In case of failure, the Turkish president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, has offered Istanbul as the venue for a future meeting between the two leaders.

While Macron tries to obtain concessions from Putin before traveling to Kiev, the foreign ministers of France, Jean-Yves Le Drian, and Germany, Annalena Baerbock, will travel to Ukraine on Monday.

In a clear show of support for Ukraine, the two will travel to the east of the country on Tuesday to visit Donbas, the scene of a conflict since 2014.

While Germany resists supplying weapons to Ukraine, US and Canadian weaponry arrived in Kiev on Sunday, as did a 100-man British special forces detachment to train local soldiers.

Berlin maintains that the arrival of European weapons can be counterproductive, but it has been willing to block the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline laid by Moscow in the event of a Russian military intervention. EFE


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