Kyiv needs more military and diplomatic steps from foreign partners
Eleven days the Armed Forces of Ukraine and the Ukrainian people continue to resist new and new attacks by the Russian occupants from various directions. Ukraine appreciates all the assistance provided by international partners. For effective protection, assistance to victims and victory over the aggressor, Ukraine needs the following from its foreign partners:
1. Intensify international isolation of Russia
2. Provide a no-fly zone over Ukraine
3. Protect Ukraine’s nuclear power plants from threats, particularly by the no-fly zone
4. Arrange green corridors for the cities of Ukraine
5. Secure ports of Ukraine and foreign civilian vessels in the Black Sea
6. Disconnect ALL Russian banks from the SWIFT system
7. Impose an embargo on Russian oil
8. Protect historic buildings
9. Remove the bodies of the Russian soldiers from Ukraine
Well, meanwhile Mykhailo Drapak, the Foreign Policy Council “Ukrainian Prism” and I are continuing the traditional series of extra reviews of #whataboutneighbours. This time we are adding the Baltic states as well.
Poland and the United States are discussing the way Polish fighter aircrafts can be transferred to Ukraine. The point is that Warsaw could provide Soviet-made fighter jets to Ukraine and receive American F-16s in return. According to the White House, they are now considering the options of delivering the planes to Ukraine.
A conversation between US President Joe Biden and Polish President Andrzej Duda took place. They talked about Ukraine and how to strengthen NATO’s eastern flank. US Vice President Camila Harris is expected to visit Poland and Romania next week. She is expected to be there from March 9 to 11.
Also in Poland, in Korchova on the border with Ukraine, US Secretary of State Anthony Blinkin met with Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Dmytro Kuleba. They discussed additional support that the United States can provide to Ukraine.
At the same time, Polish people stay concerned. In particular, Spanish journalist Pablo Gonzalez, who allegedly worked as a freelancer for Publico and La Sexta, was detained on suspicion of spying for Russia. The “journalist” was preparing to go to Ukraine. By the way, on February 6th he was already detained in Ukraine for working in Donbas without accreditation.
Minister of Foreign Affairs of Romania Bohdan Aurescu said that NATO should fundamentally reconsider its approach to the Eastern Flank. In addition, Romania has decided to raise the level of defense expenses from 2% to 2.5%.
The dangerous situation in Odessa has led to the fact that the Romanian port of Constanta now accepts cargo destined for Ukraine and Moldova (6-7 thousand additional containers per day). The Romanian authorities have decided to create a transport corridor to deliver these goods to the border with Moldova. Additional payments from transport companies that will be engaged in transportation will not be charged.
In Bulgaria during the celebration of the anniversary of liberation of Bulgaria, supporters of the right-wing pro-Russian Renaissance party attacked Prime Minister Kirill Petkov with snowballs shouting “Russia!”, “NATO away”, “traitor”. At the same time, Petkov said that Sofia would no longer be “soft” on Russia and supported all EU and NATO sanctions and decisions.
In the Czech Republic, Prime Minister Petr Fiala and President Miloš Zeman are discussing the possibility of giving Czech citizens the right to take part in countering the Russian invasion in Ukraine without the risk of being penalized at home. In general, decisions of such kind are made in the Czech Republic individually, but for those who are ready to fight in Ukraine, they are planning to make exceptions and grant such a right on general basis, and not on the individual requests
Hungary has decided to guarantee health insurance to all refugees from Ukraine. In addition, on Saturday at a meeting of the Steering Committee of the NATO Center for Cyber Security Cooperation they made a decision of admitting Ukraine. Earlier, this decision was blocked by Budapest.
Moldova, meanwhile, is restless. Transnistria has once again called for recognition of its independence. Concerned about this, Chisinau may impose martial law on March 9.
Although the Baltic states are not Ukraine’s direct neighbours, we have decided that we will now mention them in our digest, as they behave humanely and neighbourly, unlike some of our immediate neighbors.
Estonia has collected more than 6 million euros of donations for Ukrainians. 5 major charities raised these funds under the slogan “Ukraina heaks!”. This is in addition to the fact that Estonian friends continue to supply Javelin to Ukraine.
In Latvia, the Riga City Hall has decided to rename the street where the Russian Embassy is located to Independent Ukraine Street.
The same was done in Lithuania, in Vilnius. There, the Russian embassy is now on Heroes of Ukraine Street. In addition, Lithuania called on Google to move its office from Moscow to Vilnius.
(c) the Foreign Policy Council “Ukrainian Prism”