Inopressa. Russia is becoming a «hawk», and I’m glad it only Asad

At a security conference in Munich that Russia was «against all», and «the rigidity of the discussions led to doubt in the success of the agreement on a temporary truce in Syria,» the media are writing. The Russian political establishment has moved to the position of «hawks,» commented Time by publishing an interview with Medvedev.

The main theme of the Munich security conference, usually devoted to transatlantic cooperation, this year was Syria, writes the correspondent of The New York Times by Alison Smale, noting the gloomy atmosphere of the event.

The German politician Norbert Röttgen, «a confidant of Angela Merkel«gave «straightforward assessment of the intentions of Russia»: Moscow is unlikely to comply with the agreement on ceasefire in Syria made on Friday. Röttgen said: «Russia has taken the upper hand in the region, and by historical standards, this is something new».

U.S. Senator John McCain said about Russian President: «the Appetite comes during the meal. We have already seen this in Ukraine.»

Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev warned that the world is slipping into a new cold war.

The UN special representative for Syria , Staffan de Mistura, said that Tuesday or Wednesday will begin sending to Syria convoys with humanitarian aid: «This will be the first test taken in Munich obligations». The truce, he said, should apply to «all parts of Syria except ISIL-controlled and «Dzhabhat EN-Nusra» (both organizations are banned in Russia. — Approx. ed.)».

Russia vs. all — Le Monde describes the situation in the conference on security in Munich, where he aggravated the discord between Russian and Western leaders on Syria, Ukraine, immigration crisis, and the rigidity of the discussions made us question the chances of success of the agreement on a temporary truce in Syria.

Before arriving in Munich the Prime Minister of Russia Dmitry Medvedev in interview to the German Handelsblatt warned the Americans and their Arab partners in Syria from the beginning of the «new war», and then speaking at the forum, accused the NATO in the conduct hostile and closed policy toward Russia.

In response to demands to stop bombing civilians in Syria, Medvedev said that «no evidence» it is not. Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov even more rigidly destroyed the hope of success in Munich signed an agreement on Syria, calling its implementation is impossible because of the position of the Americans.

John Kerry, the US Secretary of state, not too upbeat on the situation in Syria: he sees «positive signs signifying the end of the war», and regrets that Russian air strikes directed against the opposition, reports the newspaper.

Correspondents indicate that the majority of participants of the Munich conference were set even worse. «The cold war? Actually, it is already very hot, — said the President of Lithuania Dalia Grybauskaite. — Is there any difference between Syria and Ukraine? It is aggression. Terrorism.» In her opinion, the West is repeating the same mistake, «bowing» to Russia.

In turn, President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko has accused Russia of promoting the idea of «alternative Europe» where there is no tolerance, human rights are not respected, thriving religious fanaticism and homophobia, reports Le Monde.

«Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said Time in an exclusive interview that Russia has no plans to stop the campaign of air strikes on rebel positions in Syria, while Moscow’s allies in Damascus will not be able to achieve peace on favourable terms,» writes correspondent Simon Shuster.

Medvedev said that the rebels who «run the machine» and not just ISIS terrorists, must be authorized by the order to attack. «They are all bandits and terrorists (…). They wander from each other for different reasons: more money to pay someone with someone quarreled. Therefore, it is very difficult to distinguish from the not very moderate very moderate, good and bad,» he said.

According to Schuster, interview Medvedev does not leave much room for hope that an agreement Russia, US and 15 other countries on truce in Syria will be lasting. Its provisions, said Medvedev, inspire «some cautious optimism that it will be possible to agree about the future — how will the settlement process in Syria, a civil dialogue, its principles, participants». After a little time, Medvedev added: «ceasefire».

The Prime Minister said that Assad must enter into negotiations with rebel forces, with which «you can negotiate». After that, the negotiators will have to agree about the political structure of Syria and the process of democratic reforms. They also have to figure out what will be the role of Assad in a future Syria, «because otherwise it would be strange,» said Medvedev.

Meanwhile, Assad said that he was going to regain control over all of Syria.

«Medvedev did not give a direct answer to the question of Time, whether Russia shares this aim-Assad,» writes the interviewer. According to Schuster, Medvedev hinted that Russia is against dividing Syria between Assad and the opposition.

To the question about the UN report, where the Assad regime is accused of crimes against humanity, Medvedev answered that it should be studied carefully and «if there are solid proof, they must get an international legal assessment». «But such accusations themselves are not to embroil Russia with its allies in the circles of the Syrian regime,» — says Schuster. To a question, Medvedev replied: «the Allies are different.»

Medvedev is warning the U.S. and its Arab allies from areas in Syria ground troops to support any opposition forces.

Shortly before this interview Medvedev said that Russia and the West «has slipped, in fact, during the new cold war». Schuster has regarded this rhetoric as a sign that the Russian political establishment has moved to the position of «hawks».

However, as it seemed Schuster, in an interview, Medvedev has tried to alleviate morning statement. «I never said that began a new cold war,» he said. Rather, NATO’s actions «are pushing a new cold war,» Medvedev said, referring to plans to build up NATO forces in Eastern Europe.

«In a broader sense, the Prime Minister clearly explained that there is no pressure from the West, least of all sanctions, imposed on Russia for its military intervention into Ukraine will not force Moscow to change its policies,» concludes Schuster. Medvedev said that Russia would not ask about the lifting of sanctions, and cited «the Master and Margarita»: «Never ask».

«Dmitry Medvedev said that the world is engaged in a new cold war, warning the West of grave consequences if he did not cooperate with Russia in Syria and elsewhere,» reports The Wall Street Journal.

«We fell down in the time of a new cold war,» Medvedev said in his speech on Saturday, high-ranking foreign officials at a landmark conference on security in Germany.

The role of Russia increased on the ceasefire talks in Syria on Thursday evening, when there was established a working group chaired by Russia and the USA, which was commissioned to determine the technical details of the truce, the article says.

Medvedev insisted in his speech and a brief press conference that the West is facing the inevitable choice: to cooperate with Russia in areas of shared interests such as combating terrorism and safeguarding stability in the middle East — or face the permanent global conflict.

«But do we really need another, third world shake-up, to understand how what is needed now is cooperation, not confrontation?» — has asked a rhetorical question Medvedev, referring to before the Second world war.

However, the British foreign Secretary Philip Hammond expressed doubt about the possibility of implementing a truce in Syria during the week. «Honestly, it depends on what Russia wants,» he said.

The commander of the United armed forces of NATO in Europe, General Philip Breedlove stated that Medvedev has the right to their own opinion, however, NATO does not want a new cold war and did not see her.

This position was confirmed by the Minister of foreign Affairs of Germany Frank-Walter Steinmeier. «We definitely are not in a state of cold war,» he said.

In an interview with German magazine Der Spiegel, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov denied allegations of German politicians, like Russia bombing in Syria, trying to increase the flow of refugees to Europe, and also commented on the rumors about the possible resignation of Assad.

«Streams of refugees began to appear in Europe before the beginning of military operation», — said the diplomat.

«Our main goal is peace in Syria and the start of negotiations, during which Syrians could decide their country’s future, — said Gatilov. We may not want to impose our will, but we are interested in stability in the region». The decision on Syria, he said, would have «a positive effect on neighbouring countries, namely, Palestine, Libya, unstable Iraq, North Africa», where «spreading terrorist threat».

Also Gatilov explained why Russia will not force President Assad to give way to a successor: «Assad is a legitimate President. Americans are often addressed in us saying, let’s decide who will rule in Syria. But we will never do such things. It should be decided by the Syrians».

«Moreover, a bad reputation would have Assad, backed by a significant portion of Syrian society. Many support it, — the diplomat said. And now if Assad goes, Syria will finally cease to exist as a state. Even the Americans now believe.»

Gatilov added that in the future Russia is going to increasingly be present in the middle East region than ever before. «This region will cause problems for a long time, and there are a number of reasons, such as the bombing of Libya and the attempted democratization of the Middle East on American patterns. All this did not lead to anything good, — concluded the diplomat. — We, at least, never tried to impose on the people who live there their will».

According to the Minister of defence of Italy, Roberta Pinotti, the world is experiencing a very delicate moment in terms of active propaganda. The first test will be the delivery of humanitarian aid to Syria, writes La Repubblica.

«I support what was said by John Kerry: between Russia and the USA was reached a good agreement to de-escalate military confrontation, there are mechanisms under the auspices of the United Nations must determine the ability to deliver humanitarian assistance,» said Pinotti, expressing hope that in the meantime «will continue to work on effective cessation of hostilities».

Now Russia is increasingly isolated. «Undoubtedly, there are different approaches to relations with Russia. But the dialogue with Russia is fundamental for Ukraine, Middle East, Syria, Iraq, relations with Iran, says the head of the Italian defense Ministry. — The proposal of Chancellor Merkel to restore desktop NATO — Russia quite reasonably. The doctrine assumes NATO deterrence and dialogue: we have relied on deterrence. Now we should begin this blessed dialogue — otherwise we will regret missed opportunities».


«Russian world» for Syria with many unknowns (Corriere della Sera)

Russia was accused of using Syrian refugees «as a weapon» (The Financial Times)

Translation InoPressa

Inopressa. Russia is becoming a «hawk», and I’m glad it only Asad 15.02.2016

Февраль 15th, 2016 by
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