MINSK, 14 March (BelTA) – In an interview with China Central Television Belarusian Minister of Foreign Affairs Vladimir Makei offered his vision of a key to resolving the conflict in Ukraine, BelTA learned from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Belarus.
“I have to admit that these negotiations [Russia-Ukraine peace talks] have made little headway. Nevertheless, certain progress was still achieved during the three rounds of talks. It is very important that the parties meet, talk to each other and try to understand each other. Unfortunately, it turns out that even when they find some common ground at the negotiating table, their position might change dramatically upon returning home, at least on one side. We understand why this happens. In any case, it is very important that now there is at least a desire to talk to each other,” the minister said.
When asked about the main obstacle to reaching agreements, the minister said: “I strongly believe that the main obstacle to resolving the ongoing conflict is the position of the West that is trying to provide Ukraine with the most advanced weapons, sending mercenaries there contrary to all international rules, treaties and agreements, and thereby adds fuel to the fire of this conflict, as the Chinese foreign minister said some time ago.”
According to Vladimir Makei, the main problem is that the West does not want to understand Russia's security concerns in the region. Repeated promises not to expand NATO eastwards also play a role here.
“Nevertheless, there is a key to resolving this conflict. It exists. First of all, the parties to the conflict need to get rid of external advisers. And secondly, they should show a sincere interest in finding a compromise based on the balance of interests,” Vladimir Makei said.
Speaking about the role of Belarus, he noted that the country has not engaged and is not going to engage in mediation. “We have always said that we are extremely interested in finding a solution to any issues, including the ongoing crisis, at the diplomatic negotiating table, and not on the battlefield. This is the policy pursued by the leadership of Belarus now,” the minister said. “We are not a party to the negotiations, although we do not stand on the sidelines and are ready to participate in negotiations, to contribute to resolving the crisis, if needed,” he added.