Мітки ukraine

Russia sanctions: test of EU commitment to international law

неділя, 22 липня, 2018

Публікація на EUobserver

Speaking at a press conference in Moscow, Italy’s interior minister Matteo Salvini recently announced that his government would “not be afraid” to use its veto powers in the European Union as a “last resort” to push the bloc into lifting sanctions against Russia.
This statement, completely overshadowed by the scandalous Trump-Putin Helsinki summit, brings into focus the politically precarious nature of the EU sanctions regime. More importantly, it highlights an inherent deficiency in the nature of the sanctions regime which demands remedy.

The EU, United States, and several other nations imposed sanctions against Russia in an attempt to uphold international law and halt Moscow’s unlawful aggression against Ukraine.

This act of solidarity with Ukraine has been the international community’s strongest message to Moscow.

It has helped to contain Russia’s war machinery, helping save thousands of Ukrainian lives, but it has not been enough to end Russia’s violations of international law in Ukraine as the price Moscow pays remains trivial in proportion to the gravity of its violations in Ukraine.

The principal problem with the EU sanctions regime is that it rests on the failure to recognise Russia’s interstate war against the Ukrainian state.

The result is an inherently flawed framework which does not pursue the right objectives – namely, to repress, reverse, and repair Russia’s violations of international law in Ukraine.

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Are the EU and NATO Serious about Bringing Peace to Ukraine? You Wouldn’t Know It from Their Language.

четвер, 19 липня, 2018

Публікація на Atlantic Council

German Chancellor Angela Merkel speaks with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg as they arrive for a family picture ahead of the opening ceremony of the NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) summit, at the NATO headquarters in Brussels, Belgium, July 11, 2018. Ludovic Marin/Pool via REUTERS

Two events that took place in Brussels this month—the NATO summit and the EU-Ukraine summit—have once again brought attention to the Western position on Russia’s unlawful war on Ukraine. Although very supportive of Ukraine, the final declarations of both summits fail to use clear language recognizing Russia’s responsibility for its ongoing multi-vector war on Ukraine.

Instead, the EU-Ukraine summit’s statement speaks of “external challenges” that Ukraine is facing, “acts of aggression by the Russian armed forces since February 2014,” “illegal annexation of Crimea and Sevastopol,” and “violence in certain areas of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions.” The language of NATO’s Brussels summit declaration is more direct, mentioning “Russia’s illegal and illegitimate annexation of Crimea and ongoing destabilization of eastern Ukraine,” and Russia’s “political, financial, and military support to militant groups,” “military interventions in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions,” and “troops, equipment, and mercenaries [stationed on] the territory of Ukraine.”

Both make two crucial mistakes. They treat Russia’s actions in Crimea and the Donbas as separate matters, not part of a coordinated, unitary war effort; and they do not unequivocally recognize Russia as the aggressor state that is directly responsible for waging an unlawful inter-state war against Ukraine, albeit an undeclared one.

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