The German foreign Ministry concerning Russia

Criticism of Moscow’s actions, foreign Minister of Germany Heiko Mas, I believe the social Democrats, does not contradict the idea of increased dialogue with Russia. Details – DW.On the morning of Monday, 28 may, Russian media reported in detail about the upcoming the day the meeting of the Board of the Social democratic party of Germany (SPD). At this meeting, I was sure, for example, the newspaper “Sight”, “the party will demand from the head of the German foreign Ministry to soften the course in relations with Russia.”

This refers to the Minister of foreign Affairs in the fourth government of Chancellor Angela Merkel (Angela Merkel) Wt Heiko (Heiko Maas), which uses a hard tone, speaking about relations with Russia and appreciating the policy of the Kremlin than its predecessors.

Dispute with Russia does not contradict the partnership

The forecast “Look”, however, did not materialize. Relations with Russia even though he was the main topic at the meeting of the Board of the SPD, but the leaders of the social Democrats are not criticized, but on the contrary, he supported his foreign Minister and even thanked him, as reported at a press conference following the meeting of the party General Secretary Lars Klingbeil (Lars Klingbeil).

We are grateful to Heiko Maas for fruitful dialogue with Russia, he said, referring to the Minister’s efforts at the resuscitation of the NATO Council – Russia and meetings in the so-called “Norman format.” “In recent weeks, much was in motion, said Klingbeil, so that it became possible more intense than in recent years, the dialogue with Russia.”

This, according to him, evidenced by the achieved in the negotiations Masa in Moscow agreed on the visit of Sergey Lavrov in September in Berlin. However, in the SPD, agrees that the dialogue with Moscow should not be around sharp corners, which need to criticize the actions of Russia, which the German social-Democrats think it is wrong. “Mind to show with which you disagree is also a part of the strategic partnership,” explained Klingbeil.

Four thesis about the relations between Berlin and Moscow

Summing up more than an hour of discussion members of the Board of the party on the Russian theme, the General Secretary of the SPD has formulated four points, reflecting the approach of the social Democrats. The first is the great importance given in the SPD, the German-Russian relations – both from a historical point of view, and in the context of the current situation on the world stage.

The second conclusion reached by the participants, is that German-Russian relations at the moment and then be on a break, and Klingbeil left no doubt about who the SPD believes is responsible. He mentioned the annexation of Crimea and Russia’s behavior in the UN Security Council on Syria that, he said, “is a difficult test for our relations”.

Thirdly, continued the Secretary-General, we want to continue to support and strengthen the dialogue with Russia. The fourth thesis – politics in the interest of preserving the world in General that has long been, in his words, “a hallmark element of the DNA of the German social-democracy.”

The German social-Democrats and EU sanctions

It should be noted that the Christian Democrats of Angela Merkel to act against Russia in approximately the same positions. They also advocate for the maintenance and expansion of dialogue with Moscow, to exclude the use of force in the resolution, for example, the conflict in Eastern Ukraine.

And on the question of sanctions imposed by the EU against Russia over the annexation of Crimea and support of separatists in Donbas, between the two ruling parties together with no contradictions.

“With regard to the topic of sanctions was Klingbeil one of the journalists at the press conference – is what is written in the coalition agreement: we are ready for dismantling of the sanctions, if you will observe the Minsk agreements”.

The predecessor of the Mas on the post of the Minister of foreign Affairs, Sigmar Gabriel (Sigmar Gabriel), however, talked about the possibility of easing these sanctions, without waiting for the implementation of all points of the Minsk Protocol. But if you carefully read the text of the coalition agreement the conservatives and the social Democrats, and it does not exclude the phased liberalization of the sanctions regime.

“With the implementation of the Minsk agreements, we are ready to cancel the sanctions, is recorded in the coalition agreement, and we will carry on this dialogue with our European partners.” Which translated into Russian language, which in the German original (“Bei der Umsetzung Minsker Vereinbarungen sind wir zu einem Abbau der Sanktionen bereit”) this phrase is subject to varying interpretations. Under the “implementation of the Minsk agreements” do not have to understand the conclusion of this process, and to “lift the sanctions” can and in stages.

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