Federal Chancellor Olaf Scholz stressed the importance of coordinating policy on the extremely tense situation within and outside Ukraine, particularly with regard to the European Union and NATO.
For several months Russia has been assembling large numbers of troops in regions bordering Ukraine. The Federal Government is in constant communication with its friends and partners in the West as part of ongoing close coordination of activity on this issue. “Our allies appreciate fully what we are able to offer,” Scholz said in an with ZDF.
In this context the Federal Chancellor recalled how much Germany contributes through NATO. He also noted that Germany has contributed more aid to Ukraine in recent years than any other country in the world, underlining the fact that “Almost two billion euros have been invested in order to stabilise Ukraine's economic independence.”
A range of forums and extra efforts in the “Normandy format”
The Federal Chancellor made it clear that talks are currently taking place on several levels. In the coming days he will begin by visiting US President Biden in Washington. According to the Federal Chancellor, there will soon be further direct contact with Moscow. All key aspects of the current situation will be on the agenda in order to help de-escalate the situation. “Of course we're taking great care to arrange everything that is needed right now,” Scholz said, adding that every effort was being made to find ways“ to use talks to achieve peaceful developments in Europe”.
Parallel talks have been taking place in a range of forums since the beginning of the year. These include talks between the USA and Russia as well as through NATO and the OSCE. There have also been bilateral talks. Germany and France are also making tireless efforts through the "Normandy format" to work with Ukraine and Russia to find solutions that offer a way out of the intractable situation. “We have really been able to fully revive the Normandy format”, Scholz said. Further talks are to take place soon.
The situation is very serious: Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity are inviolable
In the light of the serious situation, the Federal Chancellor reiterated that “a military assault on Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity would come at a very high price”. Scholz stressed that this message had been made absolutely clear.