Mariupol, negotiations and the taboo on the term “attack”. In Moscow, Guterres and Putin stepped on a collision course – Observer

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It was a long-awaited meeting. However, the meeting between António Guterres and Vladimir Putin was marked by disagreements on a number of points. Starting with what is being lived in Ukraine: The The Russian president stressed that he would carry out a “special military operation”. while the Secretary-General of the United Nations (UN) spoke of an “attack” on the country. The disagreement did not end there and the Russian head of state came to accuse a senior UN official of being “mistaken” On the situation in Mariupol.

Vladimir Putin sat at the table for twenty feet (where the German Chancellor and the President of France were also received) as the first speaker – and also the first to enter the room and sit down without waiting for Guterres to do so. as a guest and according to the protocol. The Russian president began by reaffirming the importance of the United Nations, of which Russia (in this case the Soviet Union) was one of the “founding members.” “There is no equal organization in the international community,” stressed the Russian head of state, who said he supported the principle that “all states, regardless of size, location or opportunity,” are “equal.”

Speaking of the situation in Ukraine, the “basis for negotiations” this Tuesday, Vladimir Putin recalled the Euromaidan (or the democratic revolution in Ukraine), which he called a “coup.” “From there we received requests for independence from Crimea and Eastern Ukraine”said the Russian president, who then accused Kiev of failing to comply with the Minsk agreements and also of that “genocide”. “We tried to resolve the matter peacefully and regulate the situation. We were forced to do this. “ claimed the Russian head of state justified the attack on a neighboring country.

“Foreign colleagues did not recognize this need,” said Putin, who explained that all this led to the launch of a “special military operation” on Ukrainian territory – in accordance with the UN Charter.


Although a ceasefire has not yet been agreed, Vladimir Putin assured his readiness to continue “negotiations” between the two countries, although he had reported that the “staging” of the Buchan massacre had harmed them. Russia’s good will is not enough, he stressed and clarified that the Ukrainian authorities are unwilling to “commit” and “accept security guarantees.” “Therefore, they rejected the draft [das negociações de paz]”he reasoned and added that there are points where the difference between Kiev and Moscow is greater, especially those referring to Crimea and Donbass.

Furthermore, in the self-proclaimed republics of Donetsk and Lugansk, the Russian president used the situation in Kosovo to justify his request for independence. “I am very familiar with the documents of the UN International Court of Justice which say that the sovereignty of the state does not oblige it to seek permission from the central government to declare their independence. “

“The law enforcement agencies in the United States and Europe all supported it [a independência do Kosovo face à Sérvia] the same right to rebel against central government “he stressed and pointed out that the same thing is happening now in Donetsk and Lugansk .: “There has already been a precedent.”

António Guterres took the opportunity to reject Vladimir Putin’s version and stressed that the UN had never supported Kosovo’s independence. Prior to that, the UN Secretary-General had stressed that his main concern was the “situation in Ukraine”. It is necessary to “respect order and international law,” and the views of the two leaders “differ.” Yet the high-ranking diplomatic official said he understood “a lot of complaints” from Russia, especially “about the global and European security situation.” “I understand part of your dissatisfaction.”

Nevertheless, the UN Secretary-General pointed out that this was an “attack on Ukrainian territory” and that this was clearly contrary to the UN Charter (contrary to what Vladimir Putin claimed). It is meant to emphasize that it was Moscow on a “pragmatic approach”António Guterres expressed his “deep concern” over the humanitarian catastrophe in Ukraine.

António Guterres stressed that the UN has never been involved in negotiations between Russia and Ukraine since 2014, and said he supported Turkey’s initiative to launch a “bilateral dialogue” between the two countries.

However, the UN Secretary-General proposed the establishment of humanitarian corridors in Mariupol and the provision of humanitarian assistance. “It would be a humanitarian contact group where Russia, Ukraine and the UN discuss the situation together,” he explained, adding that civilians left at the Azovstal plant are being evacuated. “It is an opportunity to guarantee the departure of these people,” said António Guterres, who would ensure that this process is carried out “as openly as possible”.

Vladimir Putin’s response ended with Guterres’ proposal being rejected altogether. The Russian president acknowledged that this is a “complex and even tragic situation”, but assured that there will be “no fighting” in Mariupol. “It’s over, there is no fight”, he reiterated and pointed out that 1,300 Ukrainian soldiers surrendered. “Our qualified doctors treat the wounded carefully,” he said.

The humanitarian corridors are also operational, Vladimir Putin said, reporting that 100,000 to 140,000 people left Mariupol. “They could go anywhere in Russia, to Ukraine, wherever they want,” he signed, and even suggested that a UN delegation with other organizations, such as the Red Cross, be going to Mariupol to show what “is actually happening.” “We’re ready to do it.”

Of the Azovstal plant, which has civilians, Vladimir Putin stressed that it was “completely isolated,” accusing Ukrainian “nationalists” of holding the population hostage and using it as a “human shield.”

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