Analyze the situation carefully
Federal Council waives sanctions against Russia
For now, Switzerland is refraining from adopting EU and US sanctions against Russia. The stated goal, however, is to prevent Switzerland from being abused and circumvented.
Publication date: 6:13 pm
Updated: 7:56 PM
The violation of international law is clear, and the reactions are violent: since President Vladimir Putin (69) recognized two separatist regions in Ukraine and sent his own forces, international politics has revolved around Russia.
Both the European Union and the United States have already announced sanctions against Russia. On Wednesday, the Federal Council also dealt with the crisis.
However, the reaction is still not surprising: Switzerland refrains from adopting the sanctions of other countries. However, Switzerland should be prevented from becoming a platform for bypassing these sanctions. The Federal Council announced that other countries’ sanctions would be “carefully analyzed” and then decided.
Proceed as in the Crimea
The state government thus follows a Swiss-like tradition. Even in 2014, after the annexation of Crimea by Russian forces, she only made sure not to circumvent the sanctions of other states in this country. In doing so, it relies on the law of prohibition. Switzerland is in constant contact with many countries to exchange information about the current situation.
The Federal Council condemns the recognition of the territories not controlled by Ukraine as independent states. It is an act contrary to international law and a violation of the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine. Tensions in eastern Ukraine have risen sharply since Russia took this step.
Further escalation is feared
The Federal Council is watching the situation “with great concern, as there is a risk of a significant further escalation”. Switzerland does not recognize the breakaway regions as states and continues to regard them as part of the Ukrainian national territory.
Moreover, the recognition of the regions directly violates the Minsk Agreement, the state government wrote. The agreement negotiated between Ukraine, Russia, France and Germany in 2014 serves as the basis for resolving the conflict in eastern Ukraine. As a member of the Contact Group, Russia is obligated to support the implementation of the Agreement.
Contrary to expectations, Foreign Minister Ignazio Cassis, 60, refrained from appearing in front of the media after the Federal Council meeting. Instead, the State Department announced essentially the same thing that Secretary of State Livia Liu, 61, had already hinted at on Tuesday.
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