Lessons of Ukraine During the panel discussion Putin was asked by the moderator Geoff Cutmore from CNBC, what he thought about the Ukraine and whether he would respect the election results May 25. He answered that “Russia will respect the outcome of the elections in Ukraine.” He however also made clear that in strict constitutional terms the president of Ukraine still is Yanukovych and that instead of a “coup” 21 of February what should have been implemented in the Ukraine was a referendum on the need to first change the constitution followed then by presidential elections. Putin clearly blamed the US for the violent events which occurred in the Ukraine underlining that the crisis developed in Ukraine when Yanukovych postponed the signing of an association treaty with the EU. “What then followed was a coup, which was supported by our American friends. The result is chaos and a true civil war.” While the Ukraine is of vital importance for Russia, the US has no vital interest, Putin said. However despite that the US and Europe have supported sanctions. He emphasized that the US has an obvious interest in waging economic war between Russia and Europe: “Our US friends want to get a competitive advantage in their relations with Europe!” In reminding the audience that soon the anniversary celebrations of the first and second world war will take place, Putin reiterated several times that Russia is interested in “peace and calm” and “that a peaceful negotiation process is always the best road”, i.e. Russia has signaled that it is ready for dialogue and negotiations after the 25 May elections and that it will neither close the door for dialogue with the US (with whom they cooperate in Afghanistan, Syria and Iran) nor with Europe.]]>


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