The new plan for peace in Ukraine’s east, disclosed by former Ambassador of Austria to the United Nations Martin Sajdik (see Eurasia Daily Monitor, January 30) and the reactions to it from Kyiv, Moscow, Donetsk and Luhansk, illustrate three basic facts about the Russian-imposed Minsk agreements and their non-implementation from 2014-2015 to date. First, as is generally recognized, “the Minsk agreements do not work”; more to the point, they do not work the way Moscow designed them against Ukraine, because Ukraine has immunized itself militarily, legally and politically from those agreements’ destructive potential. Second, the Minsk dispensation is not one “without alternatives”; hence Mr. Sajdik’s plan itself (for all its flaws) seeks to move the negotiations from the level of the Minsk agreements – a bilateral Russia-Ukraine affair – to a new level, that of a multilateral international settlement. Mr. Sajdik’s plan, in turn, repackages Washington and Kyiv’s initiative (2017-2018) for a United Nations-led peacekeeping mission in Ukraine’s east, designed to circumvent the destructive political clauses of the Minsk agreements: an alternative to them, while still paying the inevitable diplomatic lip service to them. And third (as a corollary), Russia can fiercely defend the system of Minsk agreements and forums… Read full this story
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