Merkel, Hollande confessions signify "betrayal": Russian official
The Russian Senator noted that Moscow ended up being the only co-author and guarantor of the Minsk Accords.
A member of Russia's Federation Council said that the former EU leaders' admission that they never intended to uphold the Minsk agreements means they have the blood of thousands of Donbass victims on their hands.
An influential Russian lawmaker claimed that the recent admissions by former French President Francois Hollande and former German Chancellor Angela Merkel that they had no intention of upholding their obligations under the Minsk agreements constituted a "formalization of betrayal... by the West" of the people.
Hollande came clean on Wednesday about the fact that the international agreements for which France acted as guarantor were little more than a ruse to buy the Ukrainian regime some time while it upgraded its military with equipment and training from NATO.
“Since 2014, Ukraine has strengthened its military posture… It is the merit of the Minsk Agreements to have given the Ukrainian Army this opportunity,” the former French president told a Ukrainian outlet.
Read next: Minsk agreement under the microscope; intentions exposed: Global Times
Deputy Speaker of the Russian Federation Council and long-time Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Duma, Konstantin Kosachev, issued a harsh condemnation of Western duplicity on Telegram.
The Influential legislator wrote on Friday that "the confessions of Merkel and Hollande are a formalization of betrayal," in what appears to be the first public criticism of both Hollande and Merkel's remarks by a senior Russian official.
“The southeast of then-Ukraine was initially betrayed by the West… The price of this betrayal was thousands of human lives over the last eight years of the civil war in Ukraine – which was not initially stopped by the West, which turned the Minsk agreements into scrap paper – but which Russia is now forced to stop with its special military operation,” Kosachev noted.
“For the West, the territorial integrity of Ukraine is all about control over land,” he continued. “It’s about territory, not people.”
Kosachev explained that the main point is about "violence, not negotiations", which he noted, “directly contradicts so-called European values.” He stated that his country turned out to be the only co-author of the Minsk agreements. As opposed to Ukraine, Germany, and France, he believes that it was Russia who stood up for the people of Donbass.
'Russia was fooled'
Earlier last month, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that Russia was hoping for peace agreements back when it signed the Minsk agreements in 2014, but it was fooled.
"We all endured, endured, endured and hoped for some kind of peace agreement, but now it turns out that we were simply fooled," Putin told reporters.
"After the revelations of [ex-German Chancellor Angela] Merkel, [ex-Ukrainian President Petro] Poroshenko, and other politicians about the true goals of the Minsk agreements, it became obvious to everyone that Russia was not the source of the conflict in Ukraine," Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said a day before Putin's statement.
Moreover, Merkel, who was in office from 2005 to 2021, said earlier that month that the Minsk accords were signed to "give Ukraine time" to strengthen itself.
"The 2014 Minsk agreement was an attempt to give time to Ukraine. It also used this time to become stronger as can be seen today. The Ukraine of 2014-2015 is not modern Ukraine," Merkel said.
Read next: Moscow finds the Merkel 'confessions' concrete grounds for a tribunal
In a similar context, former German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who, earlier in December, confessed that the Minsk agreements were only "meant to give Ukraine time" said on December 28 that the question of whether or not she will be participating in a possible Ukrainian reconciliation process "has not been raised."
In an interview with the Italian Corriere della Sera, the ex-chancellor noted that she is oblivious about how the war in Ukraine will come to an end, arguing that "it will eventually end in negotiations," adding that "wars normally end at the negotiating table."
During the interview, Merkel was asked why she adopted an energy policy that made Germany, and Europe as a whole, so dependent on Russia when she realized, as declared in Merkel's first post-Chancellor public appearance in 2007 that Putin only understood the language of force given his view of Europe.
In response, Merkel explained "we all knew that it was a frozen conflict [the Ukraine-Russia gas dispute], that the problem was not solved, but it was precisely this that gave Ukraine precious time."