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president Volodomir Zelenskyj holder en tale til det ukrainske folk

– This means that Ukraine will not join NATO – NRK Eurex – Foreign news and documentaries

In an interview with Russian journalists about a possible peace agreement, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky spoke about the possibility that Ukraine It can become neutral.

– Guarantees of security, neutrality and our status as a nuclear-weapon-free country. We are willing to accept this, and this is the most important point.

The interview was conducted before Ukraine and Russia met in Turkey in Negotiations this week.

This means that Ukraine will not join NATO, or any other defense alliance, says Camilla Cooper, associate professor at the Norwegian Defense College.

It refers to Switzerland which was a neutral country. So far, they have been clear that they do not want to be a party to any dispute.

Neutrality also means that Ukraine cannot have foreign forces in the country, as Norway did in Lithuania.

– Cooper says it’s about official membership, but also about how Ukraine will relate to NATO countries in the future.

NATO: President Zelensky and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg in December 2021.

Photo: Olivier Matthys/AP

Lack of trust between the two parties

This would satisfy one of the demands of Russian President Vladimir Putin; Ukraine is abandoning the goal of becoming a member of NATO.

If we go back to the quote from President Zelensky, it is not so simple. The President has made it clear that Ukraine will not accept neutrality without it Security guarantees from third countries

There is no trust between Russia and Ukraine, says Marianne Riedervold, a researcher at the Norwegian Institute for Foreign Policy (Nupi) and Høgskolen i Innlandet.

Researcher Marian Riedervold is out of NRK.

Researcher: Marian Riedervold is a researcher at the Norwegian Institute for Foreign Policy.

Photo: Håkon Benjaminsen/NRK

In 1994, Russia, Britain and the United States pledged to respect Ukraine’s independence, sovereignty, and borders. The condition was that Ukraine get rid of its nuclear weapons.

– We know that we cannot trust what Russia says. When you do not have trust, it is very difficult to negotiate, because it is based on a certain trust. MOne must believe that the other party will actually follow what is agreed upon.

Since you do not have the confidence, you are looking for ways to compensate for it.

The Ukrainian proposal is for other countries to come and guarantee Ukraine’s security in exchange for Ukraine agreeing to be neutral and thus not become a member of NATO.

The proposal of neutrality in exchange for security guarantees, Riedervold says, is based on the idea that if Russia attacks Ukraine, the third countries, with Canada, Turkey and Israel mentioned, will provide Ukrainian military assistance at short notice.

violates the constitution

Neutrality is also not something Ukraine can promise. in 2019 Occurred Then-President Petro Poroshenko changed the constitution obligating Ukraine to join NATO and the European Union.

Lviv, Ukraine

People: Ukrainians in Lviv February 19, 2022, five days before the start of the war.

Photo: Pavlo Palamarchuk/Reuters

Neutrality will sever this obligation. Security guarantees must be followed by a referendum in the country.

– Why? Because we have referendums. Zelensky told Russian reporters when they pointed out that security guarantees presuppose changes to the constitution.

While Russia imposes strict rules on censorship and arrests Russians protesting the war, Ukraine is going in the opposite direction. The voice of the Ukrainians must be heard. The decision to be neutral rests with them.

Putin and Zelensky December 2019

Talks: Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, former German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Emmanuel Macron and Russian President Vladimir Putin in December 2019. Putin and Zelensky have not spoken since Russia invaded Ukraine.

Photo: Ludovic Marin/AFP

Long road to peace

Although the two sides talk together, and Ukraine says it is ready to become neutral under certain conditions, Riedervold believes the road to peace is long.

There are quite a few steps that must be taken before a possible peace agreement. So far, they have only met on a lower level.

They should both be willing to offer something to find compromises. According to Riedervold, the parties are not there yet.

She thinks we need to take what comes out of the conversations with a pinch of salt.

The Pentagon, for example, says they suspect the Kremlin is using the talks to allocate time to move its forces.

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