Comment by the Information and Press Department on the conclusions of an extraordinary Council of the European Union meeting
The conclusions made by the Extraordinary Foreign Affairs Council of the European Union on January 29, 2015, are disappointing. The European Union continues to stubbornly follow the course of escalating the already strained relations with Russia. Such a lop-sided view of the conflict in Ukraine deprives Brussels of the very ability to be an impartial mediator. The haste with which the Council made these conclusions yesterday is surprising. Apparently, the members were apprehensive of the Minsk process resuming and resulting in the same embarrassment as in September, when sanctions against Russia were toughened the day after the parties reached an agreement.
Incidentally, Brussels ignored the fact that the escalation of hostilities in the southeast of Ukraine was initiated by Kiev right before the EU Council meetings.
In a word, it is regretful that the Council has one again turned out to be hostage of an aggressive minority, for which the Ukrainian crisis is only a pretext to impose Russophobic approaches and hinder normal cooperation between Russia and the European Union.
As far as Russia is concerned, our concrete proposals on settling the crisis in Ukraine and putting the European process back on a constructive track remain in force. It is time for the EU to think about the futility of confrontation through sanctions, which is damaging for the economies and the peoples of our countries.
January 30, 2015