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In Russia: Baerbock makes an announcement to Putin's minister on the open stage - he pretends to be innocent

2022-01-18T15:50:08.977Z

In Russia: Baerbock makes an announcement to Putin's minister on the open stage - he pretends to be innocent Created: 01/18/2022, 16:46 By: Bedrettin Bölükbasi, Anna-Katharina Ahnefeld The Ukraine conflict continues to smolder - and Annalena Baerbock is visiting Moscow this Tuesday. Chancellor Scholz is now calling for de-escalation. The news ticker. Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock* travels



In Russia: Baerbock makes an announcement to Putin's minister on the open stage - he pretends to be innocent

Created: 01/18/2022, 16:46

By: Bedrettin Bölükbasi, Anna-Katharina Ahnefeld

The Ukraine conflict continues to smolder - and Annalena Baerbock is visiting Moscow this Tuesday.

Chancellor Scholz is now calling for de-escalation.

The news ticker.

  • Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock* travels to Kiev and Moscow in the midst of high tensions in the West with Russia*

    (see first report)

    .

  • Baerbock shows a hard edge against Russia * – and threatens a high price in the event of aggression against Ukraine *

    (update from January 17, 1:05 p.m.)

    .

  • On Tuesday, January 18, Baerbock met with Russia's Foreign Minister Lavrov* in Moscow

    (update from January 18, 12:40 p.m.)

    .

  • This news ticker is continuously updated.

Update from January 18, 1:50 p.m.:

Another question follows on the status of Russia Today. Federal Foreign Minister Baerbock states that RT Deutsch has been producing in Germany for years, broadcasts via the Internet and has unhindered access to journalistic activities and to federal press conferences. The accusation of state interference is therefore not the case.



There is only one decision by the YouTube platform, since RT Deutsch violated the terms of use with false information. The federal government has nothing to do with the current status of the station, assures Baerbock and adds: "Intervention by the German federal government would also contradict our German constitution."



Lavrov says Russia is concerned about their journalists. Moscow assumes that the German government has a certain connection to it. German authorities were not prepared to issue a license. He is certain that Berlin has also done this in other countries that RT Deutsch has contacted. Although the license issued in Serbia complies with all European conventions, the German regulator blocked the transfer. Russia is therefore of the opinion that there is certainly interference in the activities of journalists, Lavrov said.



Russia would like the channel to be approved and has no interest in acting in the same way. The most important thing is that Russian journalists feel comfortable and are not discriminated against. The Russian foreign minister made it clear once again that his government did not want to create any obstacles for German journalists, but would have to take countermeasures if necessary.

Update from January 18, 1:30 p.m .:

German Foreign Minister Baerbock answers a question about Nord Stream 2 with reference to European energy law. It was agreed in the coalition agreement that this applies to all energy infrastructure projects. Therefore, the certification process is currently paused. In addition, it was repeatedly emphasized that the use of energy as a weapon "would also have corresponding effects with regard to this pipeline".



At lunch, many of the questions raised will be discussed further, Baerbock announced. The continuation of the talks is important, above all because of different perspectives on the implementation of the Minsk agreements.



Russia's Foreign Minister Lavrov also commented on further talks. For his country, it is not the timing but the topic of the talks that is decisive. The Ukrainian government has not taken any steps regarding its own commitments, Lavrov claims, accusing the Kiev government of sabotaging the 2019 ceasefire. With the Normandy format, one hopes not for Kiev, but that Berlin and Paris will force the Ukrainian president to fulfill his promises.

Update from January 18, 1:05 p.m .:

Even if it will have a high economic price, one will stick to the preservation of the European peace order, says Baerbock. Because without these common rules, which also include the European Convention on Human Rights, there will be no security in Europe. "We are also thinking of the Memorial case," emphasizes the Foreign Minister.



In this context, the Greens politician also addresses the concentration of Russian troops on the Ukrainian border. This was done "without any understandable reason" and it was "difficult not to understand this as a threat". Regarding the possible sanctions against Russia, she said that the federal government did not choose this situation, but would not avoid it.

Update from January 18, 12:55 p.m .:

After Lavrov, Federal Foreign Minister Baerbock spoke. According to Baerbock, she arrived in Moscow with a “thick discussion folder”. "It's fat because there's a whole range of topics to discuss on which we have big, sometimes fundamental, differences of opinion," emphasizes Baerbock. In addition, there are also topics with the opportunity for "more cooperation".



Germany has "every interest in Russia's huge potential for renewable energy". After all, “the climate crisis cannot be overcome without the largest country in the world”. But you also need “a reliable Russia in order to be able to continue to supply Europe with gas in the coming years as a transition”. 

Update from January 18, 12:50 p.m .:

According to him, Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov also discussed the status of Russian television channels such as RT at the meeting with Annalena Baerbock. Russia is certain that both the German mass media and the Russian mass media must work in the other country with equal rights and without discrimination.



In addition, there was an exchange on current international issues such as EU-Russia relations. There are "anti-Russian lines" in Brussels, Lavrov claims. Furthermore, Russian initiatives on factual and legal security guarantees were discussed. Attempts to portray Russia as a side in the Ukraine conflict and to hold the country responsible for the failure to implement the Minsk agreements have also been refuted.

Update from January 18, 12:40 p.m .:

The press conference by Federal Foreign Minister Baerbock and her Russian counterpart Lavrov has begun. Russia has an interest in working with the new federal government to overcome difficulties, Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov announced. There are prospects for cooperation in various areas such as health, climate, renewable energies and hydrogen strategies.



He also discussed the continuation of the certification and commissioning of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline with Baerbock, Lavrov said. The project is "important" and aimed at securing the energy supply of Germany and all of Europe. According to Lavrov, German colleagues were informed that the project was being politicized.

Update from January 18, 11:40 a.m.:

Baerbock and Lavrov are still a long time coming. Meanwhile, CDU foreign politician Jürgen Hardt is calling for a reduction in German demand for Russian natural gas supplies because of the conflict with Moscow. "I think it is impossible that we remain highly dependent on gas supplies from Russia if Russia is such a critical partner under international law," he said on Tuesday on RBB Inforadio. If Russia invades Ukraine, it must be clear that the Baltic Sea pipeline Nord Stream 2 cannot go online.

"I believe that in Europe we generally have to think about how dependent we are on individual gas sources," Hardt continued. "I can imagine that we will diversify more so that we don't become subject to political blackmail. Of course, that depends on how Russia behaves in the coming weeks.” On the question of further sanctions against Russia, Hardt spoke out against the proposal to exclude the country from the Swift international payment system. After all, Germany also has to pay its Russian gas bills, he argues. In addition, such a step could artificially split the world into two financial worlds: "I can well imagine that Beijing would very much welcome such a step, because they would of course offer Russiato develop a corresponding payment system on the basis of Chinese financial power," said Hardt.

Update from January 18, 11:18 a.m .:

Annalena Baerbock’s press conference with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov should begin shortly.

The start was planned for 11 a.m. and is currently being delayed.

Update from January 18, 11 a.m.:

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov spoke out in favor of better bilateral relations at the first personal meeting with his German colleague Annalena Baerbock.

There is no alternative to a good relationship between Moscow and Berlin, Lavrov said at the beginning of the meeting in Moscow on Tuesday.

Russia would like more constructive relations with Germany - on an equal footing and taking into account the respective interests, he said with regard to a large number of conflict issues.

"With my trip, I want to make it clear that the relationship with Russia is very important to the new German government and to me personally," said the Greens politician. "There is no alternative to stable relations between Moscow and Berlin." Baerbock had already arrived in the Russian capital on Monday evening after a visit to Ukraine. She knows about the "deep historical dimension of the relationship between our two countries," said Baerbock. That's why it was important to her to lay a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier - for the victims of the Second World War. "The historical depth, also the historical pain between our two countries, is always a task for politics of the present and for future generations.And we remain eternally grateful to the people of Russia for the reconciliation after the horrors of the Nazi dictatorship.”

Update from January 18, 10:40 a.m.:

Given the fears of a Russian invasion of Ukraine, Great Britain wants to supply the former Soviet republic with light anti-tank weapons.

The aim is to improve Ukraine's defense capabilities, British Defense Secretary Ben Wallace said in Parliament on Monday evening.

"These are not strategic weapons and they do not pose a threat to Russia. They are intended to be used in self-defense," he stressed.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov (R) and German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock (L) enter a hall during their meeting in Moscow.

© EPA/MAXIM SHEMETOV / POOL

A small number of British army personnel are to train the Ukrainian military there for a short time on how to use the weapons, the minister added. He did not say exactly which defensive anti-tank weapons are involved. "Ukraine has every right to defend its borders," Wallace said. Most recently, the minister recalled that Britain was helping to preserve the Ukrainian navy. More than 22,000 Ukrainian soldiers have been trained by the British since 2015. But Wallace also said he didn't want to raise false hopes. British soldiers would not be deployed on Ukrainian soil in the event of a war with Russia.

Ukrainian Ambassador to Britain Vadim Pristaiko welcomed the arms shipments. It remains to be seen whether that will make a difference on the battlefield, he told the BBC on Monday evening. There is also no solution as to how the weapons should get to Ukraine. "We are faced with the largest army in Europe and we are on our own," Pristaiko told the BBC on Monday evening. While there is outside assistance, such as additional missiles and training, the superiority of the Russians and their allies is overwhelming. His country is surrounded by troops on the Russian border, in Crimea annexed by Russia, in the breakaway Moldovan region of Transnistria, and Belarus also poses a threat, the ambassador said.

Ukraine crisis: after a piquant Russia threat the day before - Baerbock meets Putin's foreign minister

Update from January 18, 9:25 a.m .:

Before her meeting with Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, Federal Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock (Greens) emphasized Berlin’s willingness to engage in dialogue in the Ukraine conflict.

"Today in Moscow I want to define my position: we want stable relations and are ready for a serious dialogue about steps to increase security for everyone in Europe," Baerbock tweeted on Tuesday morning.

"Our benchmark remains the basic principles of our peace and security order." Baerbock and Lavrov meet in Moscow at a time of great tension between Russia and the West.

Around 1 p.m. (local time, 11 a.m. CET) the two want to appear in front of the press.

Spicy: On Monday - in the Ukraine - Baerbock openly threatened Russia: "Any renewed aggression would - we have emphasized this again - have a high price."

The central message that Baerbock had to convey in Moscow was: “We stand together as the European Union.

We won't let ourselves be divided," said the chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee in the Bundestag, Michael Roth (SPD), on Tuesday in the ARD "Morgenmagazin".

In the conflict with Russia, the EU is relying on a "political-diplomatic solution," said the former Minister of State for Europe.

The "diplomatic toolbox" also included sanctions.

In the event of further Russian aggression against Ukraine, "everything must be put on the table".

Ukraine crisis: Baerbock meets Putin's foreign minister - Hofreiter makes Nord Stream demands in Germany.

© ITAR-TASS/Michael Sohn/IMAGO/dpa

Unlike several party colleagues, Roth spoke out in favor of not ruling out a stop in the Nord Stream 2 Baltic Sea pipeline.

Germany must acknowledge that the issue of Nord Stream 2 has led to “great anger and division” in Europe from the start, Roth emphasized, referring to Poland, the Baltic States and Ukraine.

If sanctions really do have to be imposed, "then we cannot rule out things in advance that our partners in the European Union may demand."

In addition, with a view to Nord Stream 2 and the further behavior of Russia, there is also an agreement with the US government, Roth emphasized.

Baerbock in Russia: Ukraine crisis and Nord Stream 2 – Scholz meets NATO Secretary General Stoltenberg

Update from January 18, 8:30 a.m.:

Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) receives NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg at the Federal Chancellery in Berlin on Tuesday, 12 noon.

A joint press statement is planned at 1.45 p.m., as announced by the federal government.

The talks that started in Brussels in December are to be continued at the meeting.

At that time, the two politicians had primarily discussed the conflict between Russia and Ukraine.

Update from January 18, 8:05 a.m .:

The CDU foreign politician Norbert Röttgen has warned against hasty concessions to the Russian side in view of the Ukraine conflict. He advises "all political actors against taking deterrence potential against Russia off the table in this critical phase," he told the newspapers of the

editorial network Germany

(Tuesday edition). "Only if Putin has to reckon with unforeseeable consequences can the West perhaps prevent him from taking violent action."

It must be clear to everyone that Ukraine is just "an application" for Russian President Vladimir Putin's efforts to revise the European order militarily, if necessary. Röttgen emphasized that strength is now important. "Germany must also see itself as part of European strength together with the USA," he told RND. "Any form of German special paths is the opposite of strength." Baerbock must make it clear, even against resistance in his own country, that a stable peace order in Europe, which includes the security and sovereignty of Ukraine, is the most important prerequisite for one's own interests, Germans including business interests. It is therefore an "important sign of solidarity with Ukraine" that Baerbock first traveled to Kiev on Monday,before meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov for talks on Tuesday.

(Nord Stream 2 is part of Moscow's war preparations against Ukraine*. Scholz now has to support his Foreign Minister Baerbock, comments Georg Anastasiadis.)

Ukraine crisis: Baerbock meets Putin's foreign minister - Hofreiter makes Nord Stream demands in Germany

Update from January 18, 7:25 a.m .:

The Green Anton Hofreiter calls for the decision to commission the controversial Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline to be delayed as long as possible.

"For geostrategic reasons alone, it is wise to keep the question open for as long as possible," said the chair of the European Committee in the Bundestag to the AFP news agency before the talks with Federal Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock (Greens) on Tuesday in Moscow.

Otherwise Germany would give “a means of pressure against Putin”.

"This pipeline is problematic for two reasons," Hofreiter said. “Firstly because of climate protection and secondly because Putin can completely bypass Ukraine and Poland through this pipeline. That's why our Eastern European neighbors in particular are putting a lot of pressure so that this pipeline doesn't go into operation in the end." Germany is also "not dependent on this additional pipeline for supplies because the pipelines that run through Ukraine are already filled accordingly are."

"The certification by the Federal Network Agency is an open process," stressed Hofreiter. "I think we have to be very careful that Putin doesn't continue to use the pipeline to put pressure on him. We have to be clear about what our own interests are - both in terms of climate policy and geostrategic." At the same time, Hofreiter called for a dialogue with Moscow. "We must continue to engage in intense dialogue with Russia without being naïve to Putin, who has not been particularly keen on honoring treaties in the past," he said. “Of course, we also need de-escalation tools for Putin, and it would make sense to try to deepen the disarmament talks in a sensible and structured way.At the beginning of the week, Hofreiter also commented on the asylum debate in Germany*.

Ukraine crisis: Baerbock meets Russia's foreign minister in Moscow

Update from January 18, 7:10 a.m.:

Federal Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock (Greens) meets her Russian colleague Sergey Lavrov in Moscow on Tuesday for talks about the Ukraine conflict.

A press conference is planned around 1 p.m. local time (11 a.m. CET).

At the meeting, Baerbock wants to promote Russia's continued involvement in efforts to resolve the crisis.

There had been a series of international talks in the past week, but without a breakthrough.

Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock is counting on a dialogue with Moscow.

© -/Ukrainian Foreign Ministry Press Office/AP/dpa

Baerbock met with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba on Monday.

In view of a massive Russian troop deployment on the border with Ukraine, the West fears that Russia is preparing to invade the neighboring country.

The Kremlin categorically denies this

Delicate appearance in Ukraine: Baerbock promptly sends a threat to Putin – then Scholz also speaks up

Update from January 17, 6:50 p.m.:

During her state visit to the Ukrainian capital of Kiev, Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock dampened expectations of a quick settlement of the conflicts between Russia and Ukraine. The Greens politician spoke out in favor of bringing both conflicting parties back to the negotiating table as quickly as possible, but apparently does not expect quick results.

"It's incredibly difficult, I would like to say that at this point," said Baerbock on Monday in Kiev.

"There isn't one magic door that you can open and then the crisis is solved," said the Foreign Minister.

"And if there isn't one door, then we will open different windows," the 41-year-old continued.

Baerbock can promote this debate on Tuesday when she travels to Moscow to hold talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

Ukraine conflict: Scholz calls on Moscow to de-escalate - situation is "very, very serious"

Meanwhile, Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) has called on Moscow to de-escalate the current situation. The situation on the Ukrainian-Russian border is "very, very serious," declared the Chancellor during an official visit to Madrid. "It is therefore important that we expect clear steps from Russia to de-escalate the situation." Should Russia decide to take military action in the ongoing crisis, it would "have serious political as well as economic consequences. "

In this context, the Chancellor also spoke out in favor of reviving the Normandy format, in which Germany, France, Russia and Ukraine meet for talks.

When asked by a journalist present whether the traffic light government would stick to the commissioning of the Nord Stream 2 Baltic Sea pipeline, Scholz replied that this government would act very uniformly on this issue.

"This also includes standing consistently in the continuity of what German governments have done cleverly in the past on this issue," the Federal Chancellor continued.

During her official visit to Kiev, Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock (Greens) spoke out in favor of bringing Russia and Ukraine back to the table.

© Janine Schmitz/imago-images

Baerbock in Kiev: Foreign Minister assures cooperation on cyber defense

Update from January 17, 1:30 p.m .:

Similar to Kuleba, Baerbock confirmed the energy partnership “to meet the Paris climate goals, to increase climate efficiency” as a central topic of the talks.

Above all, however, she emphasized "energy sovereignty and energy independence".

This requires a “massive expansion” of renewable energies and a “ramp up of the market for green hydrogen”.

The Foreign Minister announced the establishment of an office for "hydrogen diplomacy" by the federal government.

This is how you want to get concrete projects on the track.



Against the background of the most recent cyber attack on Ukraine, the Green politician also emphasized cooperation on cyber defense. Here they offered to provide experts from the Federal Office for Information Security "for support and clarification". 

Update from January 17, 1:20 p.m .:

A first week of talks with Russia is now behind us, but a breakthrough within a few hours “after years of silence” was not expected, admitted Baerbock. "We see - that's obvious - that we are miles apart on very, very many points," said the Foreign Minister. Nevertheless, they have "staying power" and will "not lose sight of principles".



According to Baerbock, no country has the right to dictate to other countries “the direction in which to go, what relationships to have and what alliances to form”. The Green politician stressed that Ukraine's sovereignty would not and could not be a subject for negotiation.



The humanitarian situation in Donbass is "more than depressing".

In order to counteract this, progress is needed in the implementation of the Minsk agreements.

She had agreed with her French counterpart Le Drian to do everything to "re-vitalize" the Normandy format.

For this reason, she will visit Ukraine together with Le Drian and drive to the people on the contact line.

Ukraine appearance: Baerbock indicates dissent with Scholz and threatens Putin with a "high price"

Update from January 17, 1:08 p.m.:

Contrary to what was previously requested by the Greens (

see update from 12:00 p.m.

), Baerbock did not specifically name the pipeline as a sanctions measure in the conflict with Russia: In the event of further escalations from Russia, one would deal with the Discuss with partners how to proceed. "Any renewed aggression would - we have emphasized this again - have a high price." However, the minister also indicated a dissent with Chancellor Olaf Scholz: Energy supply and energy partnerships are also about "security policy," she said.

Baerbock also strictly rejected arms deliveries at the press conference.

Although the Ukrainian Foreign Minister Kuleb asked them about it, a delivery is currently not an issue for Germany.

Among other things, this is "founded in our history," Baerbock made clear.

"We have a clear position and we will not change it, depending on which country I travel to," said the new German Foreign Minister.

Baerbock in Ukraine: Foreign Minister promises to Kiev - "that's why I'm here today"

Update from January 17, 1:05 p.m .:

“We as Germany have caused your country so much suffering on your territory and are therefore forever connected in friendship and solidarity,” said Federal Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock at the start of her speech at the press conference with her Ukrainian counterparts.



Since taking office, she has spoken about the security of no other country as much as that of Ukraine.

Unfortunately, this is "not a good sign," said Baerbock.

Her visits abroad have always been about the “Russian military presence and the threatening rhetoric associated with it”.

"European solidarity for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine" was the message everywhere, which she wanted to emphasize again in Kiev.

That's not up for debate for them.



"Any renewed aggression would - we have emphasized this again - have a high price," emphasized the Foreign Minister with regard to the Russian troop deployment on the Ukrainian border. In order to defuse the current "highly dangerous situation", diplomacy is "the only viable way", which is why one is ready for a "serious dialogue", said the Green politician.



However, we will not talk about Ukraine without Ukraine. She spoke to Kuleba on the phone immediately after taking office, that NATO is working closely with Ukraine, and EU foreign policy chief Borrell was in Kiev. "And that's why I'm here today," said Baerbock.

Update from January 17, 12:55 p.m .:

The Ukrainian Foreign Minister Kuleba finally addressed discussions about the controversial Nord Stream 2 pipeline at the joint press conference with Baerbock.

This issue was also discussed.

The top Ukrainian diplomat thanked the foreign minister for her "principled positions" on the project.

Against this background, together with the Foreign Minister, the future of European energy was also discussed, explained Kuleba.

Energy supply will be important for European security, he stressed.

Germany is a "steadfast, reliable friend and partner" in creating a green energy sector in Ukraine.

Update vom 17. Januar, 12.45 Uhr: Zu Beginn der Pressekonferenz mit Bundesaußenministerin Annalena Baerbock betonte der ukrainische Außenminister Kuleba, der Besuch von Baerbock sei ein “wichtiges Symbol”, da er am 30. Jahrestag des Wiederaufbaus diplomatischer Beziehungen komme. Der wichtigste Teil der Gespräche mit Baerbock sei die „russische Aggression” gewesen, etwa im Donbass und auf der Krim, so Kuleba. Man habe die Dynamik diplomatischer Regelungen besprochen, wobei das Ziel eine effiziente Durchführung des Normandie-Formats sei. Gemeinsam mit Deutschland sei die Ukraine zudem ein Anhänger der diplomatischen Bewältigung des Konflikts.

Mit Freude habe er erfahren, dass Deutschland bereit dazu sei, bei der Krim-Plattform in Richtung einer Politik der Nichtanerkennung der Annexion zu arbeiten. Er hoffe, dass die deutsche Diplomatie unter Baerbock so bleibe und äußerte seine Hoffnung, bald “gute Freunde” mit der Außenministerin zu sein. Bei der neuen deutschen Regierung bedankte sich Kuleba für eine aktive Positionierung und dem Bestreben, „Russland an den Verhandlungstisch zu bringen”. Das Thema der europäischen und euroatlantischen Integration sei auch im Mittelpunkt der Gespräche gewesen, informierte der ukrainische Außenminister.

Baerbock in der Ukraine: Grüne und Union stellen Nord Stream als Sanktions-Drohung ins Schaufenster

Update vom 17. Januar, 12.00 Uhr: Außenpolitiker von Union und Grünen sehen die umstrittene Ostsee-Pipeline Nord Stream 2 vor dem Aus, sollte Russland die Ukraine angreifen. „Ich glaube, Nord Stream 2 muss gestoppt werden, sollte die Ukraine angegriffen werden. Dann sei das zwar eine Fehlinvestitionen, aber eine Investition in die Sicherheit Europas“, sagte der CDU-Außenexperte Roderich Kiesewetter im Deutschlandfunk. Kiesewetter warnte davor, Sanktionsmöglichkeiten gegenüber Russland von vornherein auszuschließen. Das schwäche die Verhandlungsposition der Europäer. Der designierte CDU-Chef Friedrich Merz hatte zuvor vor einem möglichen Ausschluss Russlands aus dem internationalen Zahlungsverkehr des Systems Swift gewarnt.

Kiesewetter betonte die Bedeutung einer gemeinsamen europäischen Haltung gegenüber Moskau und den Zusammenhalt Europas mit den USA. Die Außenministerin müsse erreichen, dass mindestens eine klare europäische Haltung deutlich werde und Antworten aus der Reise auch wieder europäisch beraten werden. Der CDU-Politiker machte ferner deutlich, dass die Außenministerin die volle Unterstützung der Union habe. Mit Blick auf die Gefahr einer Eskalation an der ukrainischen Grenze sagte der CDU-Politiker, vor Wochen habe er geglaubt, dass hier nur eine Drohkulisse aufgebaut werde. Jetzt sehe er die Lage aber brisant. Wenn der Westen Schwäche zeige, werde Russland möglicherweise einen nächsten Schritt wagen, etwa eine komplette Abtrennung der Krim oder der Ost-Ukraine. „Damit müssen wir rechnen“, unterstrich Kiesewetter.

Der Grünen-Außenexperte und Vorsitzanwärter Omid Nouripour sagte im ARD-„Morgenmagazin“: „In dem Augenblick, in dem es eine weitere Aggressionsstufe gibt durch Russland, ist eine sehr sehr große Deutlichkeit da, dass diese Pipeline nicht kommen wird.“ Nouripour unterstrich den Kurs von Dialog und Härte durch die Außenministerin. Sie werde deutlich machen, dass der Dialogfaden nicht abreißen dürfe und man auch um Interessensausgleich bemüht sein, sagte Nouripour. Zugleich müsse klar sein, dass Aggression und eine weitere Verletzung der territorialen Integrität der Ukraine einen hohen Preis mit sich brächten. Nouripour machte auch klar, dass sich Europa nicht spalten lassen werde. „Wir werden keine Deals machen können mit Russland auf Kosten von Dritten.“

Ukraine-Konflikt: Baerbock zu Besuch in Kiew und Moskau - „ernsthafter Dialog“

Erstmeldung: Die Sorge um ein erneutes militärisches Aufflammen des Ukraine-Konflikts verstärkt sich. Der Westen befürchtet angesichts eines massiven russischen Truppenaufmarschs an der Grenze zur Ukraine, dass Russland nach der Annexion der Krim 2014 derzeit einen Einmarsch im Nachbarland vorbereitet. Zuletzt betonte Pentagon-Sprecher John Kirby, die USA gehe davon aus, dass Russland mit einer „Operation unter falscher Flagge“ einen Vorwand für eine weitere Invasion der Ukraine schaffen wolle*.

Inmitten der Eskalation reist Bundesaußenministerin Annalena Baerbock (Grüne) nun nach Kiew und Moskau, um Gespräche zu führen. Baerbock wollte sich direkt nach ihrer Ankunft in Kiew mit deutschen Vertreterinnen und Vertretern der dortigen Beobachtermission der Organisation für Sicherheit und Zusammenarbeit in Europa (OSZE) treffen. Später sollte es Beratungen mit Präsident Wolodymyr Selenskyj und ihrem Amtskollegen Dmytro Kuleba geben. Der ukrainischen Regierung, die eine militärische Invasion Russlands fürchtet, will Baerbock die Unterstützung Deutschlands übermitteln. Waffenlieferungen lehnt die Bundesregierung allerdings ab.

Am Dienstag (18. Januar) ist in Moskau ein Gespräch mit Außenminister Sergej Lawrow geplant*. Hier will Baerbock darum werben, dass sich Russland weiter an Bemühungen zur Beilegung der Krise beteiligt. „Ich will vor Ort ausloten, ob es die Bereitschaft gibt, auf diplomatischem Weg zu Lösungen zu kommen - vor allem den Normandie-Prozess wieder mit Leben zu füllen und endlich bei der Umsetzung der Minsker Vereinbarungen voranzukommen“, unterstrich Baerbock.

Vor ihrer Abreise sprach sich die Außenministerin sowohl für einen „ernsthaften Dialog“ als auch eine klare Haltung gegenüber Russland aus. Gespräche „über gegenseitige Vereinbarungen und Schritte“ sollten allen in Europa „mehr Sicherheit bringen, auch Russland“, erklärte die Grünen-Politikerin. Berlin werde dabei jedoch keine Abstriche machen von Grundprinzipien wie der territorialen Unverletzlichkeit, der freien Bündniswahl und des Verzicht auf Gewaltandrohung als Mittel der Politik, betonte die Ministerin.

Baerbock besucht Ukraine: Waffenlieferungen, Nord Stream 2 und weitere Themen auf dem Programm

Besonders bei Gesprächen in Kiew dürfte Bundesaußenministerin Baerbock ein volles Programm mit einigen wichtigen Themen haben.

  • Waffenlieferungen an die Ukraine: Der ukrainische Botschafter in Berlin, Andrij Melnyk, hatte Baerbock kurz vor ihrem Besuch eindringlich aufgefordert, Kiew die Lieferung von Waffen zur Landesverteidigung zuzusagen. Die Zurückhaltung oder Ablehnung von Rüstungshilfe sei „sehr frustrierend und bitter“, sagte er der Deutschen Presse-Agentur. Die Grünen hatten sich schon im Wahlkampf die Finger an dem Thema verbrannt.
  • Konflikt in der Ostukraine: Teile der ostukrainischen Regionen Luhansk und Donezk werden seit 2014 von prorussischen Separatisten kontrolliert. Längst haben sich in den selbst ernannten Volksrepubliken Luhansk und Donezk mit Hilfe Moskaus eigenen Strukturen gebildet. Zudem hat Russland dort Hunderttausende Pässe ausgeteilt - und Ukrainer damit eingebürgert.
  • Nord Stream 2: In der Ukraine dürfte besonders Baerbocks Skepsis gegenüber der Ostseepipeline Nord Stream 2 willkommen sein. Bundeskanzler Olaf Scholz* (SPD) sieht sie dagegen als privatwirtschaftliches Projekt und hat den Genehmigungsprozess als rein unpolitisch bezeichnet. Russland betont, dass der Weg durch neue Gasleitung sicherer, kürzer und billiger sei als die Route durch die Ukraine.
  • Gastransitnetz: Die Ukraine fürchtet, dass ihr lange für die Energiesicherheit in Europa elementares Gastransitnetz in der Bedeutungslosigkeit versinken könnte. Schon in den vergangenen Jahren reduzierte der russische Gasriese Gazprom Durchleitungsmengen drastisch. Zwar hat die Bundesregierung Hilfen zugesichert bei der künftigen Nutzung des Netzes und etwa auch eine Speisung mit Wasserstoff ins Gespräch gebracht. Die Ukraine bleibt aber skeptisch.
  • Lage der Medien und Umgang mit der Opposition: Innenpolitisch eröffnete Präsident Selenskyj zusätzliche Fronten. Mit Blick auf seine angestrebte Wiederwahl im Frühjahr 2024 ließ er zum Unmut Moskaus fünf der russlandfreundlichen Fernsehsender, die der Opposition nahestehen, schließen und zwei Nachrichtenwebseiten sperren. Einer der Hauptakteure der moskauorientierten Kräfte, der Parlamentsabgeordnete Viktor Medwedtschuk, ein Vertrauter des russischen Präsidenten Wladimir Putin, wurde mittels eines Verfahrens wegen Hochverrats kaltgestellt und sitzt seit Monaten in Hausarrest.

Nord Stream 2: Ukraine sicher über Putins Plan zum Gasnetz Kiews - „erste Bomben werden Pipelines gelten“

Für die Ukraine besteht neben dem Konflikt im Osten des Landes besonders bei Nord Stream 2 Gesprächsbedarf mit Deutschland. Die Regierung in Kiew ist überzeugt: Mit der umstrittenen Pipeline verfolgt Russland einzig und allein das Ziel, die Ukraine beim Gastransit zu neutralisieren. „Wir sind zu 100 Prozent sicher, dass Nord Stream 2 den alleinigen Zweck hat, die Ukraine beim Gastransit auszuschalten“, sagte der Chef des ukrainischen Energiekonzerns Naftogaz, Jurij Witrenko, der Süddeutschen Zeitung. Mit Blick auf den russischen Truppenaufmarsch an der Grenze sagte er, Kremlchef Wladimir Putin* bereite eine militärische Invasion vor. „Und er will sicherstellen, dass dadurch keine negativen Folgen für den Handel mit Europa entstehen“, so Witrenko.

Der Staatskonzern Naftogaz betreibt das 38.000 Kilometer lange Gasnetz durch die Ukraine, das bisher auch russisches Gas nach Mitteleuropa transportiert. Noch bis Ende 2024 verdient die finanziell klamme Ex-Sowjetrepublik jährlich umgerechnet über eine Milliarde Euro am Transit. Moskaus Ziel sei es, diesen Transit auszuschalten, sagte Witrenko. Daran änderten auch Zusagen nichts, bestehende Transitverträge zu verlängern. Im Falle einer russischen Invasion werde es keine Leitungen mehr durch die Ukraine geben, sagte er: „Die ersten Bomben werden den Pipelines gelten.“

Zu Bundeskanzler* Olaf Scholz‘ Argument, es handele sich ein kommerzielles, kein politisches Projekt sagte Witrenko: „Die einzige ökonomische Logik ist, dass Putin die Ukraine für ihre proeuropäische Wahl bestrafen kann.“ Davon profitiere auch Deutschland, wo die Nord-Stream-Pipeline endet. „Für mich ist das, von einem moralischen Standpunkt, schwer zu akzeptieren“, führte der Naftogaz-Chef an.

Ukraine-Konflikt: Kreml weist Behauptungen über Invasion des Nachbarlands zurück - „wäre verrückt“

Inzwischen machte der Kreml erneut auf den großen Unterschied zwischen Positionen mit dem Westen aufmerksam. Russland und der Westen vertreten nach den Worten des Kreml-Sprechers Peskow weiterhin „völlig gegensätzliche“ Positionen. Dies sei „beunruhigend“, sagte Peskow in einem Interview mit dem US-Sender CNN. In einigen Punkten herrsche Einigkeit, sagte Peskow. In Grundsatzfragen bestünden jedoch weiterhin „völlig gegensätzliche“ Positionen.

Auf die Frage nach einer möglichen russischen Invasion in der Ukraine sagte Peskow, dies wäre „verrückt“. „Niemand bedroht irgendjemanden mit einer Militäraktion“, so Peskow. Wenn die Nato nicht auf ihre Forderungen eingehe, sei Russland aber „bereit, Vergeltungsmaßnahmen zu ergreifen“, sagte Peskow weiter. Russland wolle „keinen Prozess nur um des Prozesses willen“, hieß es außerdem. Moskau wolle nicht ewig über Meinungsunterschiede diskutieren, sondern fordere die Bereitschaft, „unsere Sorgen zu berücksichtigen“.

Ukraine: Keine einheitliche Linie zwischen Grünen und SPD - Bütikofer fordert Geschlossenheit

Zwar betont Außenministerin Baerbock bei jeder Gelegenheit eine klare und geschlossene Haltung gegenüber Russland, doch in der Bundesregierung selbst fehlt diese Geschlossenheit offenbar - vor allem aufgrund der Differenzen mit der SPD. So sollen nach Bild-Informationen Abstimmungen zwischen Matthias Lüttenberg, dem Osteuropabeauftragten im von Baerbock geleiteten Auswärtigen Amt und Jens Plötner, dem außenpolitischen Berater von Bundeskanzler Scholz, meistens schwierig gelaufen sein. Darüber hinaus wollen führende SPD-Politiker wohl auch im Falle eines erneuten russischen Angriffs auf die Ukraine Nord Stream 2 in Betrieb nehmen.

Dabei gerät die Pipeline auch zunehmend in den Fokus der US-Politik. Für Deutschland könnte dies Folgen haben, denn jetzt greifen die ersten amerikanischen Politiker durch. Ein Gesetzesentwurf des einflussreichen republikanischen Senators Ted Cruz, der Sanktionen gegen die Pipeline vorsah, erntete breite Zustimmung auch von mehreren Demokraten. Der Entwurf bekam im Senat eine Mehrheit von 55 zu 44 Stimmen, konnte jedoch von der US-Regierung, die sich über eine Beschädigung der Beziehungen mit Deutschland sorgte, verhindert werden. Nichtsdestotrotz stellen sich weiterhin viele US-Politiker entschlossen gegen die Pipeline.

Dem Grünen-Außenpolitiker Reinhard Bütikofer zufolge kann sich Deutschland allerdings nicht immer auf die Unterstützung der Biden-Regierung verlassen. „Die Bundesregierung wäre schlecht beraten, wollte sie sich darauf verlassen, dass die Biden-Administration unter allen Umständen in der Lage und willens sein wird, ihr in Bezug auf Nord Stream 2 den Rücken freizuhalten“, hob er gegenüber der Bild hervor. Zweimal habe dies US-Präsident Biden gemacht, wobei das erste Mal durch Absprache mit Altkanzlerin Merkel erfolgt ist. „Diese Absprache implizierte eindeutig einen Zusammenhang zwischen Russlands Vorgehen gegen die Ukraine und Nord Stream 2. Das im Nachhinein in Zweifel zu ziehen, wie es einige SPD-Vertreter jetzt tun, ist unredlich“, unterstrich der Außenpolitiker.

In any case, it is "badly imaginable," said Bütikofer, "that in the event of renewed Russian aggression against Ukraine, Germany could simply stick to Nord Stream 2." He warned the coalition partner SPD against exacerbating "existing discrepancies within the coalition" regarding the pipeline.

Nobody is interested in that.

In complete contrast to this, renewed aggression against Ukraine must be prevented by a high degree of unity on the part of the EU and the USA.

(bb with material from dpa and AFP) *Merkur.de is an offer from IPPEN.MEDIA

Source: merkur

All news articles on 2022-01-18

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