Author Topic: Pinchuk suggests Ukraine make 'painful compromises' for peace with Russia  (Read 339 times)

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Offline AkMike

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17:46 30.12.2016
Pinchuk suggests Ukraine make 'painful compromises' for peace with Russia

In view of the new U.S. presidential administration coming to power, which has already announced its intention to change its approach to Russia, as well as possible election of political powers in several European countries which intend to make a deal with the Russian leaders, the authorities of Ukraine and its citizens need to agree to a series of painful compromises in order to achieve peace with Russia, Ukrainian businessman and philanthropist Victor Pinchuk wrote in his article for The Wall Street Journal newspaper.

He said that the West cannot make a deal with the Kremlin disregarding the opinion of more than 40 million Ukrainians. Ukrainians have demonstrated since the end of 2013 that they will fight if the prospect of living in a free, democratic, tolerant and fair country is taken away, the businessman said.

"Those looking for a 'realist' solution would be well advised to take this into account. But the instinctive response of many Ukrainians to the new circumstances?to demand the same as before, but with greater intensity and urgency?may not work," the businessman said.

Pinchuk says that Ukrainians should also adapt to the new reality and help the international friends help them instead of issuing new appeals. "The new administration in Washington can be an opportunity for Ukraine to contribute to the solution of Russia's intervention," he said.

He notes that Ukrainians must stand up for the fundamental principles of their struggle - Ukraine?s right to choose its own way, safeguard its territorial integrity and build a successful country.

"Yes, it goes without saying that Moscow must implement its obligations under the 2014 and 2015 Minsk agreements to end the conflict in eastern Ukraine. It must ensure enforcement of the ceasefire and the withdrawal of its fighters and heavy weapons, which it has failed to do. But this can be part of a larger picture in which we make painful compromises for peace. Consider the following ideas," Pinchuk wrote.

According to him, Ukraine should consider temporarily eliminating European Union membership from our stated goals for the near future. We can build a European country, be a privileged partner, and later discuss joining.

"While we maintain our position that Crimea is part of Ukraine and must be returned, Crimea must not get in the way of a deal that ends the war in the east on an equitable basis. It will take Ukraine from 15 to 20 years to generate enough economic growth and stabilize our infrastructure, social safety net and financial system. Everyone from Crimea will then want to live in this future Ukraine - just as East Germans wanted to become part of West Germany," he said.

Pinchuk believes that the conflict in the east was initiated from abroad and is not a genuine autonomy movement or civil war. There will not be conditions for fair elections until Ukraine has full control over its territory. But we may have to overlook this truth and accept local elections. Such compromises may mean letting down Ukrainians from the east who have suffered enormously. "But if this is what it takes to demonstrate Ukraine's commitment to peaceful reunification, then we may have to make this compromise to save thousands of lives," the businessman thinks.

According to him, we must focus on helping those who had to leave their hometowns, and cannot return to live under repressive and unsafe conditions, by offering them all possible support to rebuild their lives in a new reality.

"Finally, let's accept that Ukraine will not join NATO in the near- or midterm. The offer is not on the table, and if it were, it could lead to an international crisis of unprecedented scope. For now, we should pursue an alternative security arrangement and accept neutrality as our near-term vision for the future," the philanthropist wrote in his article.

Pinchuk says Ukraine will need security guarantees. In the 1994 Budapest Memorandum the U.S., Russia, Britain, France and China gave security assurances in exchange for Ukraine giving up its nuclear arsenal.

"We trusted this agreement but learned painfully when Russia invaded Crimea that assurances are not guarantees. Ukraine must offer realistic, detailed proposals on all of these points. We should also make clear that we are ready to accept an incremental rollback of sanctions on Russia as we move toward a solution for a free, united, peaceful and secure Ukraine," the article says.

Pinchuk says that Ukrainian lives that will be saved are worth the painful compromises he has proposed. Ukrainians must reiterate that Ukraine can be part of solving its own problems and addressing global challenges as part of a broad international coalition.

"When I hosted Donald Trump as a speaker by video link at the 2015 Yalta European Strategy annual meeting, he expressed great respect for Ukraine and the belief that we were not getting the support we deserved. I am hopeful that his sympathy for Ukraine can be the basis for meaningful negotiations, agreements and eventually a peaceful settlement," the businessman said.

Pinchuk is a Ukrainian businessman and philanthropist, an owner of investment and consulting group EastOne and Interpipe metallurgical company.

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Online David Rochlin

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Of course the painful compromise is to re-establish the Kleptocracy, accept mafia control of the RADA, have fixed elections, Only then will Putin feel secure.  Ukraine still has Oligarchs like Pinchuck, but that wouldn't be enough. 

Online Reggie

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They want to legalize the presence of the  Black Sea fleet at the Crimean port of Sevastopol.  What's the importance of that port to Russia?

- With less warm water ports, Russia would increasingly be geographically isolated.

- Trade

- Natural resources (Russia wants to construct a major natural gas pipeline to South Europe, to avoid gas transit through Ukraine. A shorter route could go through the waters off Crimea).

- Defensive and aggressive postures toward nearby countries (avoiding a situation where NATO dominates the Black Sea).

- Defensive and aggressive postures toward remote countries.

- As a major oil exporter and a country heavily dependent on oil revenues, Russia is interested in leveraging instability in the Middle East.  The port furthers those interests.

Russia won't be able to re-establish the Russian-Kleptocracy over Ukraine, because (quite honestly) there is now a domestic Ukrainian-Kleptocracy that will be hard to 100% uproot.  They know that absolute Russian control is likely gone; the best the Russians could hope for is partnering in the new Kleptocracy.

Online frank1010

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