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Europe understands there is no backtracking on Crimea — Russian EU ambassador

The issue of Crimea's reunification with Russia will remain a point of contention in the relations between Moscow and Brussels, says Russia's Ambassador to the EU Vladimir Chizhov
Russia’s Ambassador to the EU Vladimir Chizhov ITAR-TASS/Ruslan Shamukov
Russia’s Ambassador to the EU Vladimir Chizhov
© ITAR-TASS/Ruslan Shamukov

MOSCOW, April 18. /ITAR-TASS/. Europe is fully aware that there is no and there will be no backtracking on Crimea, Russia’s Ambassador to the EU Vladimir Chizhov said on Friday.

“I think Europe has finally come to understand that there is no and there will be no going back. They understand that it is rather pointless to discuss the Crimean problem with us, although this issue will remain a point of contention in our relations,” he told the Rossiya 24 television channel.

The work on the process that was launched in the Geneva negotiations on Ukraine will be continued, Chizhov added.

“Many were inclined to think that this meeting would be doomed to failure,” Chizhov noted. “The fact that we managed to agree on the document is a big success, which opens the way for further work. The work at the Geneva meeting is not over, it will be continued with active participation of Russian diplomacy," he said.


Constructive ambiguity

Constructive ambiguity is a term generally credited to Henry Kissinger. It refers to the deliberate use of ambiguous language on a sensitive issue in order to advance some political objectives. It might be employed in a negotiation, both to disguise an inability to resolve a contentious issue on which the parties remain far apart, and to do so in a manner that enables each to claim obtaining some concession on it. It warrants further hopes that the ensuing postponement of resolution on this particular point, in a way that causes neither side excessive discomfort, will enable them to make real progress on other matters.


Geneva agreement on deescalation of crisis in Ukraine

The term ‘constructive ambiguity’ cannot be applied to Geneva statement on Ukraine, Chizhov said, commenting on various interpretations of the agreements reached in Thursday's Geneva negotiations on Ukraine.

“The statement rather clearly states what the Kiev authorities should do,” he said. “Kiev is insisting on disarming eastern regions and ignores what is going on in western regions and in the capital,” he added.

The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) will expand its mission in Ukraine and increase its financing, Chizhov said.

“Participants in the Geneva meeting agreed that control over the implementation of agreements in Ukrainian cities will be vested with the OSCE monitoring mission, which is already working in Ukraine and regularly sends its reports to Vienna,” the diplomat explained. “I think the mission will be expanded - more personnel will be sent there and more funds will be allocated. Russia supported the initiative to send this mission. It took much time and effort to agree its mandate."


Ukraine's entry restrictions for Russians

Ukrainian authorities’ decision to ban entry into the country for some categories of Russian citizens “has revealed hostility towards the nationals of Russia and, on top of that, a bureaucratic mess,” Chizhov said.

“This doesn’t justify the Ukrainian authorities by any means,” he said.

As he answered a reporter’s question on the EU's reaction to the ban, Chizhov expressed hope that there would be a reaction of some kind eventually. “It turned out that Ukraine’s interim acting foreign minister (Andrii Deshchytsia) didn’t even know about the decision.”

“The anti-humanistic nature of the step is further intensified by its timing,” Chizhov said. “It was announced on the eve of the Easter, which all confessions of Christianity celebrate on the same day this year.”