Korchok pointed out that tensions in eastern Ukraine and relations with Russia were the most important point in the negotiations of the main European diplomats. “What we are seeing is only a few hundred kilometers from Slovakia’s borders. This is fundamentally affecting us. The situation is really serious. Russia has placed several demands on the table, which it addresses mainly NATO and the United States. I want to say it is ready to talk about “but we cannot afford to question the fundamental principles on which the security architecture in Europe, which was established after 1989, is based,” explained the Slovak minister.
He added that the fate of countries is decided by their citizens, not other states – and the EU refuses to negotiate this. It also rejects Russia’s ultimatum that either its demands will be accepted or it will be ready to implement them “unilateral steps”. “This is a bad solution. We still see room for a diplomatic and political solution, but we need to stay at the negotiating table. There are signals that Russia has rejected the NATO invitation on January 27. We are verifying all this, but it is crucial to listen and not to back down from our side. from the basic principles, “ described the EU’s position.
They did not rule out the adoption of new sanctions
According to him, the Union does not want to transcend the basic lines of international law, such as the integrity and sovereignty of states, and in the 21st century it rejects threats of force. According to him, EU countries agree that new sanctions will be adopted if Russia’s territorial integrity is again violated. At the same time, however, he stressed that any sanctions – the “sharpness” of which has not yet been decided – will be a response to Russia’s concrete actions, as were the sanctions of 2014, when Russia annexed Crimea.
“Those sanctions are not on the table because we want to communicate the language of sanctions, but because we have to be prepared for such a scenario,” Korčok said. According to him, the “relevant EU structures” are working on a new sanctions package, which, however, must be seen as part of diplomacy and a signal to the other party.
“If something happens that is contrary to security and our own interests, it cannot go unanswered. This is the whole logic of sanctions. It is clear that in the event of a breach of international law, those sanctions will be robust. This is the language we use. , ” Korčok said at the end of the interview.