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Point of no return in Russia-West relations not yet passed - Russian expert

May 05, 2014, 12:13 UTC+3 Zamyatina Tamara

MOSCOW, May 04. /ITAR-TASS/. It’s high time the West should see that it’s the tail wagging the dog situation in the Ukrainian crisis, when Washington and Brussels clients are thrusting a line of conduct in respect of Russia upon their masters, Sergei Rogov, the director of the Institute for the US and Canadian Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences, said in an interview with ITAR-TASS.

“Such a scenario creates serious problems for the West bringing the situation to the point of maximum confrontation with Russia, which is in the interests of neither of the parties dragged into the crisis and is dangerous for all,” he said.

“It is hardly ever conceivable for a soberly-thinking person that in the 21st century in the very heart of Europe Ukrainian radicals would burn alive their compatriots in Odessa,” he said. “Such savagery, should it happen in Lugansk or Slavyansk, i.e. in a southeastern region of Ukraine near the Russian border, not deep inside the country, might have triggered an unpredictable scenario.”

On Friday, May 2, football ultras and radical supporters of Ukraine’s European integration instigated clashes with federalization supporters in central districts of Ukraine’s Black Sea port city of Odessa. Radicals set fire to a tent camp of their opponents, who sought shelter in the Trade Union House. Radicals set fire to this building throwing Molotov cocktails at it. As many as 46 people burnt alive or suffocated to death, more than a hundred were wounded.

“Even on the background of such tragic developments, the United States and the European Union keep on explicitly supporting the Kiev authorities and condemn Russia,” Rogov noted. “One can hardly expect any other reaction from the West in conditions of propaganda warfare.”

“The Kiev agreements of February 21 and the Geneva accords of April 17 that were geared towards de-escalation of the Ukrainian crisis, as a matter of fact, were just wishful thinking, since they had no mechanism to ensure their implementation,” he said, adding that the Kiev agreements were followed by a putsch and the seizure of power in Kiev and the Geneva accords - by a civil war. “The Geneva accords could have brought about real results if the West had exerted pressure on its clients in Kiev and bound them to disarm illegal armed groups, first of all, the Right Sector. A further step should have been a roundtable meeting involving both the new Ukrainian authorities and representatives from southeastern regions of Ukraine. Moreover, the latter should have been guaranteed that the Russian language would be given the status of an official state language.”

“But this scenario was not realized because Washington and its European allies are averse to compromise and want Russia to make concessions of principled character,” the Russian experts said. “As a result, the country is getting ablaze with an unprecedented cruel civil war and the relations between Russia and the West have dropped to the level of the Cold War for the first time in the past more than 30 years [after the former Soviet Union shot down a South Korean airplane].”

“Nonetheless, Russia and the West have not yet passed the point of no return. It is still possible to stop a new cold war, although our relations would stay strained for a long time and no new “reset” is to take place very soon,” he noted.

“NATO troops will not be brought to Ukraine, neither there will be UN peacekeepers, nor the Russian army there,” Rogov said.

“Despite differences in positions, when the West recognizes the Kiev authorities as legitimate, while Russia does not, there is still room for compromise. A compromise solution might be reached when the United States, the European Union and Russia oblige the Kiev authorities to conduct a constitutional reform, to disarm illegal groups, to get back to peaceful life, which will make economic assistance to Ukraine possible,” he stressed.


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