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Sanctions against Russia would be West’s big mistake - French politician

March 20, 2014, 12:34 UTC+3 PARIS
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Luc Ferry

Luc Ferry


PARIS, March 20. /ITAR-TASS/. Sanctions against Russia would be “the West’s big mistake”, acclaimed French socialist, writer and former education minister Luc Ferry writes.

“For a number of reasons Russia’s actions in Ukraine cannot be assessed as faulty,” he says adding Crimea had been part of Russia since the 18th century. Ferry finds granting Crimea to Ukraine in 1954 unjustified and deems election of Yanukovich legitimate in contrast to the formation of the Ukrainian interim government, which is “by no reason legitimate”.

Ferry described stripping the Russian language in Ukraine of its national status as a stupidity, an absurd and ridiculous provocation.

“It would be grotesque to assume that the Russian army seized Crimea, since the massive presence of Russian troops there is absolutely legal and complies with the earlier concluded agreement,” Ferry believes.

“It is an indisputable fact that majority of the Crimean population wants to join Russia,” Ferry adds describing opponents’ arguments as rather weak in legal sense. “For the sake of which people can be denied their right to self-determination?” Ferry wonders. “Although the referendum was a bit hasty, examination of the situation on the spot shows it corresponded to people’s true aspirations, and this cannot be neglected.”

“It is exactly for this and a number of other reasons that the European Union and France in particular, had better refrain from adding fuel to the fire. We should at least admit that we are dealing with a legitimacy conflict, while on the one hand, Ukraine seeks to preserve its integrity, which is quite normal, and Crimea wants to secede from this country,” the politician believes.

Ferry is also strongly criticizing the West as it “invents itself an enemy”, “takes a primitive and simplified view of the situation representing it as confrontation between good Ukrainians and bad Russians”.

He also tells European politicians it is unacceptable for them to be oriented towards the USA.

“Europe still has not realized its interests are different from the US ones. The sole thought on Obama’s mind is to weaken Russia as much as possible,” believes Ferry. “We are living on one continent with Russia, and this is a great country whose culture and politics are of incomparable significance. This is the supreme military and economic power. Threatening it with sanctions is not only insulting but also inefficient, counterproductive and just ridiculous.”

Ceasing the dialogue with Russia, he concludes, would be a grave and impermissible mistake.

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