A draft agreement has already been prepared, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung claims
Germany and Ukraine may seal a security cooperation agreement at the Munich Security Conference, which will take place from February 16-18, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung has reported. The German newspaper claimed that Berlin and Kiev had already drafted the deal.
The UK became the first nation to sign a bilateral security agreement with Ukraine on January 12, under which the two nations pledge to defend each other if attacked. Last month, French President Emmanuel Macron revealed plans to follow suit in February.
In its article on Friday, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, citing anonymous “government circles,” claimed the pact would be signed on the first day of the upcoming summit. The newspaper quoted Ukraine’s Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic integration, Olga Stefanishyna, as saying that a Ukrainian delegation had worked out a “draft for an agreement on bilateral security guarantees” the previous day. She added that the text was “not decided on, but generally ready.”
According to Stefanishyna, both Berlin and Kiev have agreed that the accord should be concluded as soon as possible.
While hailing the growing role within the European Union that Germany is now playing in backing Ukraine, Stefanishyna noted that Kiev is “not always satisfied” with Berlin, especially in light of its apparent skepticism regarding Ukraine’s NATO membership aspirations.
In late January, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said that the topic of a bilateral security pact had “played a big role” during his telephone conversation with Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky earlier that month, with the accord being “intensively prepared.”
Scholz added that he had the “feeling that we are on the verge of conclusive negotiations.”
In a post on X (formerly Twitter,) Zelensky confirmed that he had discussed Berlin’s commitment to Kiev’s security with the German chancellor.
During a NATO summit in Vilnius in July 2023, the G7 nations agreed to work out bilateral security guarantees for Kiev, pending its possible accession to the US-led military bloc at some point in the future.
Commenting on this decision, Russian President Vladimir Putin pointed out at the time that while “every country has the right to ensure its security,” this should not be done at the expense of other nations.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov dismissed the agreement signed between the UK and Ukraine in January, which, among other things, guarantees “prevention and active deterrence of, and counter measures against, any military escalation and/or a new aggression by the Russian Federation,” describing it as “half-baked.”
“I did not see any legally binding provisions in this document, except that Ukraine will have to stand up for Britain,” the diplomat explained.
Lavrov also claimed that Western countries do not really want to see Ukraine become a full-fledged member of NATO or the European Union.
Dmitry Medvedev, former Russian president and current deputy chair of the country’s Security Council, in turn, warned last month that Moscow would consider any deployment of British troops to Ukraine to be a “declaration of war.”
Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova, for her part, accused Britain of “actively working to prevent peace” in Ukraine, while turning it into a “bargaining chip.”
February 04, 2024 at 07:06PM