Tag: <span>NATO</span>

Donetsk and Luhansk Appeals

Vital Autonomy for the People’s Republic of Donetsk and…

Featured Image: Return of released citizens to the territory controlled by Ukraine, December 29, 2019. By President.gov.ua, CC BY 4.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0>, via Wikimedia Commons.

There are many dimensions to the current tensions on the Ukraine-Donbas-Russia frontiers, both geopolitical and domestic considerations.  There are long historic and strategic aspects to the current crisis.  Security crises are deeply influenced both by a sense of history and by current perceptions.  There have been bilateral discussions between U.S. and Russian authorities, between Russian and French leaders, between Russian and Chinese  leaders, between the Ukrainian leader and a number of others and multilateral discussions within the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), within NATO, at the U.N. Security Council, and within the European Union.  For the moment, there has been no de-escalation of tensions nor a lowering  of troop levels.

Currently, there is only one permanent structure for multilateral negotiations on the Ukraine tensions – the “Normandy Format” which brings together the representatives of Ukraine and Russia, France and Germany primarily to negotiate on the status of the separatist People’s Republics.

Ukraine

The famous Independence Square in Kiev on a sunny day. Photo by Euan Cameron on Unsplash.

You might be interested in reading: Ukraine-Donbas-Russia: Can the Normandy Format Be Reactivated?.

Special Status.

The Minsk II Agreement of 12 February 2015 agreed that the areas covered by the Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics would not be separated from Ukraine but would be given a “Special Status” set out in a new Ukrainian Constitution.  However, beyond some rather vague discussion on decentralization, the nature of the Special Status has not been agreed upon, and no Ukrainian government administrative measures have been put into place.

In the period since 2015, the socio-economic situation in the two People’s Republics has gotten worse.  Many people have left either for Ukraine or Russia.  There are constant violations of the ceasefire agreements which are monitored by observers of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.  Thus it its 15 December 2021 report the OSCE monitors noted that between 10-12 December, there were 444 ceasefire violations in the Donetsk region and 104 in the Luhansk region. However, the freedom of movement of the OSCE observers is restricted.  The number of violations, usually exchanges of small arms fire, is probably higher.

The Association of World Citizens.

Solving the Donbas aspect of the conflict on the basis of  a real and vital autonomy and trans-frontier cooperation should be a top priority for action. The Association of World Citizens has always stressed the importance of developing appropriate forms of government as a crucial aspect of the resolution of armed conflicts.  The Association has particularly highlighted the possiblities of con-federalism and the need for trans-frontier cooperation. The Association was involved at the start of the Abkhazia-Georgia conflict in August 1992 and the  first efforts at negotiations carried out in Geneva with representatives from Abkhazia who were in Geneva and officials from the United Nations and the  International Committee of the Red Cross.  Thus we know how a cycle of action-reaction can deepen a conflict and how difficult it is to re-establish structures of government once separation has been established.

The need to  progress on the structure of Ukraine stands out sharply at this time when there are real possibilities of escalatory risks.  There is a need for confidence-building measures reaching out to different layers of society in a cumulative process.  Advances on the Special Status would be an important step in the de-escalation of tensions.   As long as the two People’s Republics are kept weak, they will be dependent on support from Russia.  It is when they are economically and socially strong that they can have useful trans-frontier relations both with Russia and the rest of Ukraine. Discussions on the Special Status must be carried out by those living in Ukraine. 

However, government representatives as well as non-governmental organizations in Russia, Germany, and France can also contribute actively.  The new German Foreign Minister, the ecologist Annalena Baerbach, coming from a federalist-structured State with many local initiatives possible, may bring new visions to these discussions which are increasingly under way.

Annalena Baerbock

The new German Foreign Minister, the ecologist Annalena Baerbock.  By Stefan Kaminski (photography), Annalena Baerbock (full rights of use), CC BY-SA 4.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0>, via Wikimedia Commons.

Rene Wadlow, President, Association of World Citizens.

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Ukraine Appeals

Ukraine-Donbas-Russia: Can the Normandy Format Be Reactivated?

Featured Image: The famous Independence Square in Kiev on a sunny day. Photo by Euan Cameron on Unsplash.
There has been of late a good deal of sabre-rattling along the Russian-Ukrainian frontier.  There has been talk of war if the Russian troops were to invade Ukraine or to reinforce the separatist areas of Ukraine that call themselves the People’s Republic of Donetsk and the People’s Republic of Luhansk.
    President Putin has created a strawman against which to fight – the most unlikely event of Ukraine joining NATO.  He has recently shown his resolve for public appreciation  by saying:
 

“We are concerned over prospects of Ukraine’s possible accession to NATO, as it will definitely result in the deployment of military contingents, bases

and weapons posing a threat to us.”

 
The sabre-rattling has been loud enough that the Ukraine situation was an important part of the 7 December videoconference call between Presidents Biden and Putin, and  the subsequent mission of U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Karen Donfried, responsible for European and Eurasian affairs, to Ukraine and Russia and then to Brussels  to meet European Foreign Ministers and others.
 
Karen Donfried
  Portrait of Karen Donfried as Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs under President Biden. By United States Department of State, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons.
 
There are long historic and strategic roots to the current crisis.  The external and internal roots of the situation in Ukraine run deep.  Security crises are deeply influenced both by a sense of history and by current perceptions.  Nevertheless, we can use 2014 as a crucial starting point with the annexation by Russia of Crimea.
 

“Crimea has always been an inseparable part of Russia” said President Putin at the time. 

 
The  Western response to the annexation has been to impose economic sanctions which are still in place and have had important consequence of the Russian economy.
    Shortly after the Crimea annexation, there was a change in government leadership in Ukraine leading to a policy that some felt was unjust to the people in eastern Ukraine;  who were largely Russian speaking and turned economically and culturally toward Russia.  Thus a violent separatist movement took form, most likely helped by Russia, leading to the creation of the People’s Republic of Donetsk and the People’s Republic of Luhansk.  Fighting broke out between the armed sparatists and the regular Ukrainian army and police.
 
Vladimir Putin
 Photograph of Russian Vladimir Putin at 2017 G20 Summit in Hamburg. Cropped and size increased by Emiya1980. By Пресс-служба Президента Российской Федерации, CC BY 3.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0>, via Wikimedia Commons.
   
The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) quickly sent a Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine to monitor the situation.  The Mission is still in place and issues daily reports on the violations of ceasefires.  Thus in its 15 December 2021 report in the Donetsk region between 10-12 December there were 444 ceasefire violations and in the Luhansk region 104.  However, the freedom of movement of the Mission’s observers is restricted.  The number of violations , usually exchanges of small arms fire, is probably higher.
 
Joe Biden
U.S. President Joe Biden’s official portrait, 2021. By Adam Schultz, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons.

Special Status.

 
    In 2014, the mandate of the OSCE included not only observation but also efforts at negotiations.  Thus on 12 February 2015, there was negotiated what has been called the Minsk Agreement. Under this Agreement, Ukraine would not be divided but the the areas covered by the Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics would be given a “special status” set out in a new constitution. Beyond a rather vague discussion on decentralization, the nature of the “Special Status” has never been made clear, and no administrative measures have been put into place.
 

Normandy Format.

 
    In order to facilitate negotiations, there was created the “Normandy Format”, growing out of a meeting of government leaders in Normandy to mark the Allied landing in 1944.  The  Normandy Format brings together the representatives of Ukraine and Russia and France and Germany to facilitate negotiations.  So far, there has been no visible advance on the special status discussions within the Normandy Format.
 
However, with the new German Foreign Minister, the ecologist Annalena Baerbock, recently in Paris, there may be new initiatives. It is also likely that as a result of the discussions between Presidents Putin and Biden, the U.S.A. will play a more active advisory role.
 
Annalena Baerbock
 
  German Foreign Minister, the ecologist Annalena Baerbock. By Stefan Kaminski (photography), Annalena Baerbock (full rights of use), CC BY-SA 4.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0>, via Wikimedia Commons.
 
The Association of World Citizens has always stressed the importance of developing appropriate forms of government as a crucial aspects of the resolution of armed conflicts.  The Association has particularly highlighted the possibilities of con-federalism and the need for trans-frontier cooperation.  The need to progress on the structure of Ukraine stands out sharply at this time when there are real possibilities of ecalatory risks.  There is a need for confidence-building measures to reach out to different layers of society in a cumulative process.
 
Advances on the Special Status would be an important step in the de-escalation of tensions.  Discussions on the Special Status must be carried out by those living in Ukraine.  However, government representatives as well as non-governmental organizations in Russia, Germany and France  can also contribute actively.
 
 
  Rene Wadlow, President, Association of World Citizens.

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Afghanistan Appeals

Afghanistan: A Month of Questions and No Clear Replies.

Featured Image: A street in Kabul, Afghanistan. By Christopher Killalea, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons.

By Rene Wadlow.

It is a month that the Taliban forces have taken control of Kabul, a symbol that they now control the state.  In addition to the Taliban, there are an estimated 10,000 foreign fighters in some 20 Islamist groups. Among these are fighters from the Islamic State (ISIS) who had been active in Iraq and Syria.  Until now, these foreign fighters had operated independently from the Taliban.

An interim government of largely hard-line Taliban members has been created.  However public services of education, health, transportation are poorly served if at all.  The economy is at a standstill.  Many persons who had worked for the U.S. or NATO troops as well as employees of Western non-governmental organizations have been given refuge abroad, but many had to be left behind.  There is a flow of refugees to Pakistan, Iran, and the Central Asian Republics of the former USSR.  Many other persons are also looking at the possibilities of leaving, and few consider returning from abroad.

Authorities in the regional states – Pakistan, Iran, China, India and the Central Asian Republics – are all asking questions as to what policies will the Taliban government put into place.  General Faiz Hameed, the head of Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) has already gone to Kabul to find answers, and, no doubt, to try to influence the policies.  The ISI has been deeply involved in Afghan politics, especially since 1980 and the start of the Soviet intervention. At the start of August, one of the leading Taliban, Mullah Baradar met with the Foreign Minister of China, Wang Yi in China.

Wang Yi

Minister of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China Wang Yi during a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin. By Kremlin.ru, CC BY 4.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0>, via Wikimedia Commons.

When the Taliban last ruled (1996-2001), they enforced a harsh interpretation of Islamic law, banning girls and women from schools and public life.  The media was closely under control, and minorities marginalized.  While it is still too early to know what the policies and practices of the Taliban toward minorities will be now, during the past Taliban rule, there was systematic discrimination against the Hazara.  Thus on September first, the Association of World Citizens issued a Hazara Appeal.

The Hazara

Hazara people in the streets of Kabul, Afghanistan 2020. By Shaah-Sultaan, CC BY-SA 4.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0>, via Wikimedia Commons.

 Read the Post. We Must Protect the Rights of the Hazara Population in Afghanistan.

The are some three  million Hazara whose home area is in the central mountainous core of Afghanistan, but a good number have migrated to Kabul, most holding unskilled labor positions in the city.  The Hazara are largely Shi’a in religion but are considered as non-Muslim heretics or infidels by the Taliban.  In the past, there was a genocidal period under the rule of Abdur Rahman Khan.  During the 1891 – 1893 period, it is estimated that 60 percent of the Hazara were killed and many others put into slavery-like conditions.

To understand fully the concern of the Association of World Citizens for the Hazara, it is important to note that for the 1948 Convention against Genocide, the criteria for mass killings to be considered genocide does not depend on the number of persons killed or the percentage of the group destroyed but on the possibility of the destruction of the identity of a group. It is the identity of the Hazara and their religious base which is the key issue.

There have been repeated appeals to make the 1948 Genocide Convention operative as world law.  The 1948 Convention has an action article, Article VIII which states: 

“Any Contracting Party may call upon the competent organs of the United Nations to take such action under the Charter of the United Nations as they consider appropriate for the prevention and suppression of acts of genocide.” 

Despite factual evidence of mass killings in Cambodia, former Yugoslavia, and Rwanda, no Contracting Party to the Genocide Convention has ever called for any action under Article VIII. (1)

Thus the World Citizen Appeal that events need to be watched closely and non-governmental organizations be prepared to take appropriate action to alert government.

 

Note.

1. For a detailed study of the 1948 Convention and subsequent normative development see William A. Schabas. Genocide in International Law (Cambridge University Press, 2000, 624 pp.)

 

Rene Wadlow, President, Association of World Citizens.

 

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Afghanistan Appeals-Français

Début d’un Nouveau Cycle en Afghanistan ?.

Image vedette : Les forces pro-gouvernementales afghanes (y compris les milices et les troupes de l’armée) se rassemblent dans la province de Jowzjan lors de l’offensive des talibans de 2021. Par fichier : forces gouvernementales afghanes dans la province de Jowzjan pendant l’offensive des talibans de 2021.png : Travail dérivé d’Abdulbasir Ilgor (VOA) : Berrely, domaine public, via Wikimedia Commons.

Il existe de réels dangers d’augmentation des conflits armés et de régression de la société civile en Afghanistan à mesure que les talibans avancent et que les forces opposées s’organisent. Le 5 août 2021, le Conseil de sécurité des Nations Unies s’est réuni sous la présidence de l’ambassadeur de l’Inde, T.S. Tirumrti. Le Conseil a entendu un rapport du Représentant spécial du Secrétaire général des Nations Unies pour l’Afghanistan, qui a déclaré que le pays se trouvait à un tournant dangereux.

Les États régionaux – le Pakistan, l’Iran, la Chine, l’Inde et les républiques d’Asie centrale – sont tous impliqués de différentes manières. Le retrait des forces des États-Unis et de l’OTAN n’est pas terminé et les entrepreneurs privés resteront. Il y a un flux de réfugiés. Des personnes qui avaient travaillé pour les troupes américaines ou de l’OTAN sont réfugiées à l’étranger. De nombreuses autres personnes envisagent également la possibilité de partir, et peu envisagent de revenir de l’étranger.

Depuis leur renversement en 2001, les talibans se sont regroupés, ont lancé une insurrection et ont pris le contrôle d’une partie importante du pays. En plus des talibans, on estime qu’il y a 10 000 combattants étrangers dans une vingtaine de groupes islamistes qui sont également antigouvernementaux. Parmi ceux-ci se trouvent des combattants de l’État islamique (EIIS) qui avaient été actifs en Irak et en Syrie. Beaucoup de ces combattants étrangers opèrent indépendamment des talibans.

Différents efforts ont été déployés pour faciliter des négociations significatives entre les représentants du gouvernement, les talibans, les représentants de la société civile et d’autres groupes en Afghanistan. Ces négociations semblent être au point mort et n’ont produit aucune ligne directrice claire pour un règlement durable. Il est impossible de savoir quelles discussions peuvent avoir lieu entre des groupes plus restreints. Il peut y avoir des discussions avec un profil bas ou sous le couvert d’autorités religieuses. Il peut y avoir des initiatives locales pour un cessez-le-feu local. Cependant, les résultats des discussions précédentes ne permettent pas d’être optimiste quant à un accord global.

Depuis le début de l’intervention soviétique en janvier 1980, l’Afghanistan est devenu de plus en plus divisé et la guerre démographique lasse. Après 2001, bon nombre d’organisations non gouvernementales (ONG) sont devenues actives, souvent en coopération avec des ONG étrangères. Des services d’éducation et de santé ont été développés. A ce stade, il est difficile de savoir quel impact durable ces efforts des ONG auront. Dans une certaine mesure, les travailleurs des ONG étrangères dépendaient des troupes américaines et de l’OTAN pour leur protection. Il est probable que la protection des ONG étrangères ne sera pas une priorité élevée pour les troupes gouvernementales et pourraient être des cibles privilégiées des talibans.

La complexité actuelle des relations internationales, avec seulement de faibles efforts de coopération pour les processus de paix avec le système des Nations Unies et la réduction de l’espace pour les efforts de la société civile sont le fond sombre de la situation afghane actuelle. Les dangers croissants de violence et de répression peuvent créer une nouvelle énergie pour la paix ou au contraire, le découragement et la peur. La situation mérite une analyse approfondie pour voir s’il existe des opportunités d’action positive.

Rene Wadlow, Président de  Association of World Citizens.

 

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¿Inicio de una nueva ronda en Afganistán?.

Imagen de portada: Las fuerzas afganas progubernamentales (incluidas la milicia y las tropas del ejército) se reúnen en la provincia de Jowzjan durante la ofensiva de los talibanes de 2021. Por archivo: Fuerzas del gobierno afgano en la provincia de Jowzjan durante la ofensiva de los talibanes de 2021.png: Obra derivada de Abdulbasir Ilgor (VOA): Berrely, Dominio Público, via Wikimedia Commons.

Existen peligros reales de aumento de los conflictos armados y la regresión de la sociedad civil en Afganistán a medida que los talibanes avanzan y las fuerzas opuestas se organizan. El 5 de agosto de 2021, el Consejo de Seguridad de las Naciones Unidas se reunió bajo la presidencia del Embajador de India, T.S. Tirumrti. El Consejo escuchó un informe del Representante Especial del Secretario General de la ONU para Afganistán, quien dijo que el país se encontraba en un punto de inflexión peligroso.

Los estados regionales (Pakistán, Irán, China, India y las repúblicas de Asia central) participan de diferentes maneras. La retirada de las fuerzas de EE. UU. Y la OTAN no está completa y los contratistas privados permanecerán. Hay un flujo de refugiados. Las personas que habían trabajado para las tropas estadounidenses o de la OTAN están recibiendo refugio en el extranjero. Muchas otras personas también están considerando la posibilidad de irse, y pocas están considerando regresar del extranjero.

Desde su derrocamiento en 2001, los talibanes se han reagrupado, han lanzado una insurgencia y han asumido el control de una parte significativa del país. Además de los talibanes, se estima que hay 10.000 combatientes extranjeros en unos 20 grupos islamistas que también son antigubernamentales. Entre ellos se encuentran combatientes del Estado Islámico (ISIS) que habían estado activos en Irak y Siria. Muchos de estos combatientes extranjeros operan independientemente de los talibanes.

Ha habido diferentes esfuerzos para facilitar negociaciones significativas entre representantes del gobierno, los talibanes, representantes de la sociedad civil y otros grupos dentro de Afganistán. Estas negociaciones parecen estar estancadas y no han producido directrices claras para una solución duradera. Es imposible saber qué discusiones se están llevando a cabo entre grupos más limitados. Puede haber discusiones con un perfil bajo o bajo la cobertura de autoridades religiosas. Puede haber iniciativas locales para un alto el fuego local. Sin embargo, los resultados de conversaciones anteriores no hacen que uno sea optimista sobre un acuerdo general.

Desde el comienzo de la intervención soviética en enero de 1980, Afganistán se ha dividido cada vez más y la población está cansada de la guerra. Después de 2001, un buen número de organizaciones no gubernamentales (ONG) se volvieron activas, a menudo en cooperación con ONG extranjeras. Se desarrollaron los servicios de educación y salud. En esta etapa, es difícil saber qué impacto duradero tendrán estos esfuerzos de las ONG. Hasta cierto punto, los trabajadores de ONG extranjeras dependían de las tropas estadounidenses y de la OTAN para su protección. Es probable que la protección de las ONG extranjeras no sea una alta prioridad para las tropas gubernamentales y puedan ser los principales objetivos de los talibanes.

La complejidad actual de las relaciones internacionales, con solo esfuerzos débiles de cooperación para los procesos de paz con el sistema de las Naciones Unidas y el espacio cada vez más reducido para los esfuerzos de la sociedad civil son el fondo oscuro de la actual situación afgana. Los crecientes peligros de la violencia y la represión pueden generar una nueva energía para el establecimiento de la paz o, por el contrario, el desánimo y el miedo. La situación merece un análisis detenido para ver si hay oportunidades de acción positiva.

Rene Wadlow, Presidente de la  Association of World Citizens.

 

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Afghanistan Appeals

Start of a New Round in Afghanistan?.

 Featured Image: Afghan pro-government forces (including militia and army troops) assemble in Jowzjan Province during 2021 Taliban offensive. By File:Afghan government forces in Jowzjan Province during 2021 Taliban offensive.png: Abdulbasir Ilgor (VOA)derivative work: Berrely, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons.

There are real dangers of increasing armed conflict and regression of civil society in Afghanistan as the Taliban advance and opposing forces organize. On 5 August 2021, the United Nations Security Council met under the presidency of the Ambassador of India, T.S. Tirumrti. The Council heard a report from the the U.N. Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Afghanistan who said that the country was at a dangerous turning point.

Regional States – Pakistan, Iran, China, India and the Central Asian republics – are all involved in different ways. The withdrawal of the U.S.A. and NATO forces is not complete, and private contractors will stay on. There is a flow of refugees. Persons who had worked for the U.S. or NATO troops are being given refuge abroad. Many other persons are also looking at the possibility of leaving, and few are considering returning from abroad.

Since its overthrow in 2001, the Taliban has regrouped, launched an insurgency and has assumed control of a significant portion of the country. In addition to the Taliban, there are an estimated 10,000 foreign fighters in some 20 Islamist groups who are also anti-governmental. Among these are fighters from the Islamic State (ISIS) who had been active in Iraq and Syria. Many of these foreign fighters operate independently from the Taliban.

There have been different efforts to facilitate meaningful negotiations among government representatives, the Taliban, representatives of civil society and other groups from within Afghanistan. These negotiations seem to be at a standstill and have produced no clear guidelines for a lasting settlement. It is impossible to know what discussions among more limited groups may be going on. There may be discussions with a low profile or under the cover of religious authorities. There may be locl initiatives for a local ceasefire. However, the results of earlier talks does not make one optimistic on an overall agreement.

Since the start of the Soviet intervention in January 1980, Afghanistan has become increasingly divided, and the population war weary. After 2001, a good number of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) became active, often in cooperation with foreign NGOs. Education and health services were developed. At this stage, it is difficult to know what lasting impact these NGO efforts will have. To some extent foreign NGO workers depended on U.S. and NATO troops for protection. It is likely that the protection of foreign NGOs will not be a high priority for governmental troops and may be prime targets of the Taliban.

The current complexity of international relations, with only weak efforts of cooperation for peace processes with the United Nations system and shrinking space for civil society efforts are the dark background of the current Afghan situation. The growing dangers of violence and repression may creat a new energy for peacemaking or on the opposite, discouragement and fear. The situation merits close analysis to see if there are any opportunities for positive action.

 

Rene Wadlow, President, Association of World Citizens.

 

 

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Ukraine Appeals

Saber Rattling Along the Frontiers of Ukraine

Photo by  jorono in Pixabay

By Rene Wadlow.

16 Apr 2021 – The meeting today in Paris of the President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky and the French President Emmanuel Macron highlights the tensions between Ukraine, the separatist regions of Donbass and Luhansk and the Russian Federation.  France and Germany are the lead mediators in what is called the “Normandy Initiative” for resolution of the Ukraine-Donbass-Russia conflict.

Tensions have grown recently with increased violence along the lines of contact between Ukraine and Donbass and the increased number of Russian troops along the frontier. It is likely that the change in presidential administration in the U.S.A. is one aspect of this increase in tensions.  Both the U.S.A. and Russia want to remind each other that they are there. In the background is the possibility of Ukraine joining NATO which obviously Russia wants to avoid. Also in the background is the Ukrainian government’s recent approval of a “Strategy for Deoccupation and Reintegration of Crimea” and its Black Sea port of Sevastopol.

While it is unlikely that there will be an escalation of violence with an entry of Russian troops into Ukraine or the reverse, an attack on Russian soil, saber rattling can get out of hand and lead to unforeseen consequences.

The question which faces us as peace-builders is “What can we do?” to help reduce these tensions. The Association of World Citizens sent this past week an Appeal for increased mediation efforts to the authorities of the Normandy Initiative, France and Germany. It is certain that the French and German diplomats are already aware of the dangers of the situation, but it is useful that non-governmental voices be heard.  Are there avenues for Track II exchanges or non-governmental mediation efforts?  Related areas of tension are also in flux: Syria, Libya, Nagorno-Karabakh.  We need to see what doors might open, and what we can usefully propose.

This article originally appeared on Transcend Media Service (TMS) on 19 Apr 2021.

René Wadlow is a member of the TRANSCEND Network for Peace Development Environment. He is President of the Association of World Citizens, an international peace organization with consultative status with ECOSOC, the United Nations organ facilitating international cooperation and problem-solving in economic and social issues, and editor of Transnational Perspectives.

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