Representatives from Ukraine, Russia, Germany and France are set to gather in Moscow today under the “Normandy format” to discuss resolving the ongoing security crisis in Ukraine.
At issue, Russia has amassed nearly 100,000 troops along its border with Ukraine in recent weeks, citing fears that Ukraine may join NATO.
Today’s meeting comes before the Washington-Moscow meeting in Geneva next week and just days after EU foreign policy leader Josep Borell reaffirmed the Western bloc’s unconditional support for Ukraine’s territorial integrity. Brussel’s will actively mediate the conflict to maintain the stability of Eastern Europe.
The EU will not capitulate to Russia’s military pressure during today’s meeting—including its policy of supporting Ukraine’s admittance into NATO. Additionally, Brussels is preparing to implement heavy sanctions on Moscow as a response to possible incoming incursions during the short- to medium term. These sanctions could primarily curtail Moscow’s access to several European services that can benefit gas exports.
While Moscow will not attack in the short-term, it will continue to provide support to pro-Russian separatist movements in Ukraine’s Donbas region as unrest continues. This hints that it is highly unlikely for the tension in Eastern Ukraine to de-escalate during the long-term.
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Can is a Publisher and Analyst with Foreign Brief and currently pursuing his PhD in the Department of History at Bighampton University. His research there primarily focuses on the 19th-century Balkan independence movements.