17 January 2018, Wednesday, 20:52

Volodymyr Ohryzko: Cost of imaginary agreements with Russia is equal to zero


The talks in Minsk won't bring results.

Ukraine's former foreign minister Volodymyr Ohryzko does not expect progress on the way to peace from today's talks between presidents of Ukraine and Russia Petro Poroshenko and Vladimir Putin.

The diplomat said it to Obozrevatel.

“Frankly speaking, I do not expect any breakthroughs from the talks in Minsk. There's one simple reason: we are dealing with the country that does not respect any arrangements, that ignores and violates international law. The cost of even imaginary agreements is equal to zero. It is proved by talks and documents signed in Geneva and Berlin, not to mention tens of agreements that became laws in Russia after the ratification by the State Duma. The country that tramples on international law cannot be a serious partners at talks. I do not expect much from the summit,” the diplomat said.

Ohryzko thinks the only possible result of the Minsk meeting is a highly unlikely probability of reducing tensions over Ukraine's association agreement with the EU.

“The only positive thing is, in my view, that Russia will be explained once again that the agreement on association does not pose a threat to its economic interests. I see a certain sense in it. However, I think will soon read absolutely different things from Moscow about attempts to harm Russia's interests and so on,” Ohryzko said.

The ex-foreign minister of Ukraine thinks there's a range of issues that cannot become a subject of discussions or trade with Moscow.

“No exchanges for Crimea or other parts of our territory. No talks with terrorists, because they are not partners in talks, but criminals who must be tried under Ukrainian and international laws. No concessions on the ways to the European integration and NATO. No concessions over federalisation, on which Moscow insists so strongly. All other issues can be discussed. But the ones I mentioned are the red line that cannot be crossed,” Ohryzko said.

The meeting in the format Ukraine – the EU-- the Eurasian Troika (Belarus, Kazakhstan and Russia) is held in Minsk on August 26. The parties plan to discuss the issues related to the implementation of the Association Agreement between Ukraine and the EU, energy security and the stabilising of the situation in the Donbas region.

Photo: PHL