Ukraine cannot be subject to the principle of collective defense because it is not a member of NATO, says Chancellor Olaf Scholz
Security guarantees for Ukraine will be lower than those given to NATO members, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said on Sunday. In an interview with ARD radio, Scholz said that Berlin was discussing the issue of security guarantees with its “close friends», and the process is underway.
“It is clear that it will not be the same as for a member of NATO,he stressed, referring to the principle of collective security, which applies within the alliance but not to third parties. However, he said the issue of providing security guarantees for Kyiv is “currently carefully prepared by diplomats” for the end of the current conflict.
In the meantime, Scholz said the West would keep pressure on Russia through the use of sanctions.
Ukraine had signaled earlier that it would give up its NATO ambitions and agree to remain neutral as demanded by Russia in return for security guarantees from the West.
On July 1, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky announced the creation of a special group on international security guarantees for Kyiv. The group is led by former NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen, and Zelensky said he includes “influential figures from various democratic countries of the world – Australia, United States, Sweden, Great Britain, Germany, Poland, France, Italy and, of course, Ukraine.
“The main task of the group is to develop a format of security guarantees for our country, which will work in the long term and realistically, so that there are no future aggressions,said the Ukrainian leader.
At the end of April, Zelensky outlined his view of how security safeguards would work. He said guarantors should make decisions in hours rather than days or weeks, as any delay in providing emergency military assistance would cost lives.
The President explained that he is not insisting on NATO-type arrangements. He also pointed out that no one knows how NATO would act if one of its members were attacked, because such a situation has never happened and “God forbid it arises.
While a number of countries have indicated their willingness to provide such guarantees, none have officially offered them so far.
Moscow, which has long viewed NATO’s eastward expansion as a direct threat to its security interests, cited Ukraine’s possible membership as one of the main reasons for its decision to launch a military attack in February.
Russia sent troops to Ukraine on February 24, citing kyiv’s failure to implement the Minsk agreements, intended to give the Donetsk and Luhansk regions special status within the Ukrainian state. The protocols, brokered by Germany and France, were first signed in 2014. Former Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has since admitted that kyiv’s main goal was to use the ceasefire to save time and “to create powerful armed forces.”
In February 2022, the Kremlin recognized the Donbas republics as independent states and demanded that Ukraine officially declare itself a neutral country that will never join any Western military bloc. kyiv insists the Russian offensive was unprovoked.
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