Wolfgang Ischinger, a longtime chairman of the Munich Security Conference, believes that Russia will not attack Ukraine in the near future, but advises the new German government and the West to negotiate with Moscow from a position of strength.
The 75-year-old diplomat stated this in an interview with German newspaper Handelsblatt, Ukrinform reports.
When asked if there would be a new war between Russia and Ukraine, Ischinger said he "does not yet believe in a quick Russian invasion of Ukraine, which some fear." He noted that Moscow knows that "the price for this will be much greater than the gain." At the same time, he believes it is necessary to remind Russia of what NATO is doing these days.
Ischinger believes that Russian President Vladimir Putin sees himself in defense. "He has long been driven by the fear that America still wants to make Ukraine and Georgia members of NATO, and this is a red line for Russia," the diplomat said.
Noting that "it cannot be said that Ukraine and Georgia can never become members of NATO," he said it was expedient to "offer Ukraine to focus a little on the Finns in the long run." "Finland is a member of the EU, but not a member of NATO," Ischinger said.
Regarding Russia's policy, he emphasized the "importance for the West to negotiate with Russia from a position of strength." The expert advises the new German government to hold a dialogue with Moscow. "Dialogue with Russia can be wrong only if it can be interpreted as a sign of weakness," Ischinger said.