What You Need To Know:
✅ The Normandy Four meeting in Paris didn't show any real progress;
✅ Only two options: Russia gets a de facto state of Donbass, or Ukraine regains full political control;
✅ Each side is looking at each other for signs of weakness in negotiations;
✅ The West should not rush to remove sanctions on Russia.
Andre Hartel, Professor of Political Science at Kyiv Mohyla Academy commenting on the recent Normandy Four meeting believes that there is a lack of real progress.
“Everything is related to status questions… it has to be clearly understood this is a secessionist conflict. Secessionist conflicts are indivisible. They are zero sum conflicts. Either the secessionists and Russia get a de facto state or Ukraine regains full political control… only one side can win. Everyone is looking at each other right now, looking at how the other side moves, are they showing signs of weakness that would allow one to go ahead with a more progressive proposal.
He also believes the West should not rush to remove sanctions on Russia, “I think the worst thing you can do in this situation is rush any status related questions. I think time is running out for this bold strategy of Putin. If we look at the economic indicators, I believe Russia is not on the wining side here although it gives that impression… but what see in the Donbas is that a big part of the strategy of Vladimir Putin hasn’t worked, and now he wants to get the issue off the table with a fast settlement. “
Andre Hartel spoke with the Sunday Show's Ian Bateson and Nataliya Gumenyuk on October 4, 2015.