To resolve the conflict in Ukraine, it is highly important to resume the dialogue between Moscow and Washington, as “their role and responsibility is special,” first president of the USSR, Mikhail Gorbachev believes. Earlier, Gorbachev stated that Europe may face “terrifying massacre” because of the current crisis in Ukraine. According to him, “too much is at stake; dangers and risks are too high.”
Mikhail Gorbachev has recently finished working on a new book, which is going to be published soon. The book, titled “After the Kremlin,” is devoted to events in Russia and the world over the past two decades. In the epilogue to the book, Gorbachev wrote that the deep cause of what is currently happening in Ukraine was the failure of perestroika and “opportunistic dissolution of the USSR.” Gorbachev blamed the then Russian administration for that.
“At the same time, I must remind you, the Ukrainian leadership sabotaged the process of transformation of the Union – both before the August 1991 coup and after it, despite the fact that the majority of republics had coordinated the text of the Union Treaty,” said Gorbachev.
He was fighting to preserve the unified state with all available political tools and offered Kiev to discuss opportunities of creating an economic union, the former Soviet president said. During those talks, he added, one could solve all problems, including the ones on the status of the city of Sevastopol and the Crimean Peninsula.
“They did not listen to suggestions and warnings. Having forgotten the fact that one should exercise as much caution as possible in the relations between nations and think through consequences of each step, the Supreme Council of the Russian Federation approved the destruction of the Union to applause. Some would say: "That’s a matter of the past.” No – the past is through many threads related to present, and it reminds of politicians’ mistakes again and again,“ the first president of the USSR wrote.
According to Gorbachev, the only way to solve the Ukrainian crisis is to conduct a constructive dialogue both on the international level and among Ukrainian political forces. "I still believe that for peace in Ukraine, in Europe and in the world, it is vitally important to resume dialogue between Russia and the United States. Their role and responsibility is special,” said Gorbachev.
According to him, representatives of Moscow and Washington, as well as other members of the UN Security Council, should prepare a joint draft resolution, which would break the negative course of events.
In late August, the UN reported that the armed conflict in Ukraine claimed the lives of more than 2,500 people. The military operation against Ukrainian citizens that Kiev calls “anti-terrorist” and Moscow “punitive” was launched in April 2014.
On September 4, at the NATO summit in Wales, President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko said that he was ready to cease fire in the south-east of the country should the meeting in Minsk take place. Later, representatives of the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk people’s republics also declared their readiness to cease fire.
Officials at the US State Department said that Kiev should negotiate cease fire agreement with Moscow, rather than with representatives of breakaway republics. However, Russia insists that the crisis in Ukraine is an internal conflict, in which Russia does not interfere. Moreover, Russia and Ukraine are not at war with each other.
Mikhail Gorbachev earlier said that Europe may eventually face “terrifying massacre,” should the conflict in Ukraine spread to Europe. Gorbachev supports the policy of the Russian administration as far as the Ukrainian crisis is concerned.
In an interview with the Russian News Service, Gorbachev stressed out that the Russian Federation must not interfere in the conflict in Ukraine, “If our country interferes, it may trigger the fire that the whole world will not be able to extinguish,” he said.
“One should do everything to stop killings. This is one nation. If other countries get involved, and the scale of it grows, we can come to the worst massacre in Europe. This must not be allowed,” said the ex-president.
“Our offer was to open passages and take people out of those mousetraps. Someone sit in warm offices and does the talking. Look at what happens to people, children and women at the same time. They shell maternity hospitals, schools, destroy hospitals,” said Gorbachev.
As for Russia’s move to reunite with the Crimea, Mikhail Gorbachev said that it was a move “to correct the mistake of the USSR.”