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Ukraine President Says No Military Solution To Crisis, May Need To Decentralize Power

Ukraine President Petro Poroshenko has conceded that there is no military solution to the crisis in Ukraine. Though initially the war in East Ukraine against separatists was called a counter-terrorism campaign, after a string of defeats by forces (semi-)loyal to the government in Kiev it seems Poroshenko is changing part of the approach to the crisis.

Now Poroshenko has signed onto a ceasefire and claimed “There is no military solution for this crisis.” The ceasefire involves keeping the previously raging conflict to a simmer with right wing militias from West Ukraine called “volunteers” pulling back.

“There is no military solution for this crisis,” Poroshenko told EU and Ukrainian lawmakers and businessmen at the annual Yalta European Strategy conference – held in Kiev, not Yalta, due to Moscow’s annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea region in March.

“I hope the very fragile but efficient peace process which started exactly one week ago will have a continuation, for the (sake of) stable peace and security on the continent,” he said, speaking in English.

Poroshenko even seems open to a notion being promoted by Russia of yielding more autonomy to the separatist areas saying “To keep the country united, we need some decentralization of power.”

But although Poroshenko is stepping back from militaristic language and is praising the ceasefire, he still plans to pull what remains of Ukraine closer to Europe with new a agreement focusing on economic and political cooperation that is set to be ratified by the EU and Ukraine parliament next Tuesday, September 16th. Combine that with a request for NATO membership and it appears Ukraine is still dangerously split between Europe and Russia.

The ceasefire put into effect last Friday seems to be holding for now even though there has been some reported skirmishes. If the government in Kiev agrees to provide more autonomy to East Ukraine there could be a foundation for the stable peace President Poroshenko claims to be seeking.

CommunityThe Bullpen

Ukraine President Says No Military Solution To Crisis, May Need To Decentralize Power

Ukraine President Petro Poroshenko has conceded that there is no military solution to the crisis in Ukraine. Though initially the war in East Ukraine against separatists was called a counter-terrorism campaign, after a string of defeats by forces (semi-)loyal to the government in Kiev it seems Poroshenko is changing part of the approach to the crisis.

Now Poroshenko has signed onto a ceasefire and claimed “There is no military solution for this crisis.” The ceasefire involves keeping the previously raging conflict to a simmer with right wing militias from West Ukraine called “volunteers” pulling back.

“There is no military solution for this crisis,” Poroshenko told EU and Ukrainian lawmakers and businessmen at the annual Yalta European Strategy conference – held in Kiev, not Yalta, due to Moscow’s annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea region in March.

“I hope the very fragile but efficient peace process which started exactly one week ago will have a continuation, for the (sake of) stable peace and security on the continent,” he said, speaking in English.

Poroshenko even seems open to a notion being promoted by Russia of yielding more autonomy to the separatist areas saying “To keep the country united, we need some decentralization of power.”

But although Poroshenko is stepping back from militaristic language and is praising the ceasefire, he still plans to pull what remains of Ukraine closer to Europe with new a agreement focusing on economic and political cooperation that is set to be ratified by the EU and Ukraine parliament next Tuesday, September 16th. Combine that with a request for NATO membership and it appears Ukraine is still dangerously split between Europe and Russia.

The ceasefire put into effect last Friday seems to be holding for now even though there has been some reported skirmishes. If the government in Kiev agrees to provide more autonomy to East Ukraine there could be a foundation for the stable peace President Poroshenko claims to be seeking.

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Jane Hamsher

Jane Hamsher

Jane is the founder of Firedoglake.com. Her work has also appeared on the Huffington Post, Alternet and The American Prospect. She’s the author of the best selling book Killer Instinct and has produced such films Natural Born Killers and Permanent Midnight. She lives in Washington DC.
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