Russia will not get away with trying to redraw Ukraine's borders by creating facts on the ground and waiting out Kyiv and its allies, Olaf Scholz said, insisting that the West would not stand for a “diktat,” or dictated, peace forced on the country.
Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said last week that Kyiv would not trade territory for peace with Russia, telling Italy's RAI television that he had been asked by French President Emmanuel Macron to consider doing so.
The French government has denied that any such suggestion had been made. On Monday, Scholz said that such stealth border changes would not be accepted by the West if Ukraine objected to them.
“There is only one way out of this for Russia and that is reaching an agreement with Ukraine,” he told RTL television. “And that doesn't mean a diktat peace, taking a bit of territory and then saying 'sign here'.
“And it also won't work as in the case of Crimea, where the war is over in the sense that there is no more shooting, but a new border has been drawn, and then they wait until everything goes back to normal,” he added.
Russia annexed Crimea in 2014 and has since claimed a sovereignty over the Black Sea peninsula. Russia's claim is rejected by Kyiv and all but a handful of other countries.
Weapons deliveries to help Ukraine defend itself from Russia's invasion and sanctions against Moscow were designed to make it clear that “an agreement with Ukraine is unavoidable, and there is no way around this for President (Putin).”
Moscow calls its invasion of Ukraine a “special military operation” to rid the country of fascists, an assertion Kyiv and its Western allies say is a baseless pretext for an unprovoked war.