The most painful sanctions against Russian President Vladimir Putin and the cheapest ones for Ukraine's western allies are the granting Ukraine with the Membership Action Plan in NATO and European Union membership prospects, Deputy Foreign Minister of Ukraine in 2007-2010, Ukraine's Ambassador to the European Union in 2010-2015, Diplomatic Advisor of the President of Ukraine in 2015-2019 Kostiantyn Yeliseyev has said.
"The most painful sanction against Putin and the cheapest one for the western allies is to grant Ukraine with a membership action plan in NATO and the European Union membership perspective. Huge incentive for reforms and development of Ukraine. And at the same time the huge blow for Putin's aggressive and revanchist policies to bring back Ukraine to the Soviet Union," he said during an online discussion within Kyiv Security Forum on June 26.
Yeliseyev also called four steps that could help to settle the situation in Donbas.
"Number one. There is no better strategy in dealing with Russia than showing strength and unity. We must be firm and clear in our messages to Kremlin and consistent in our actions vis-à-vis Putin. No appeasement, no unconditional return to business as usual," he said.
Secondly, the diplomat said that political and economic sanctions on Russia must be strengthened.
"They will keep Russia form further invading Ukraine and keep Putin sitting at the negotiation table," he said.
Thirdly, it is necessary to return to the idea of deployment of UN peacekeeping operation in Donbas, Yeliseyev said.
"Fourthly, keep building upon military resilience in Ukraine, including supplying defensive lethal weapon, anti-air and helicopter forces. It is important that the U.S. to not revise the policy concerning Ukraine," he said.