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The Ukraine crisis

Published: Friday, 20th March 2015

The Director’s Note following the Foundation’s recent conference, “European security and the Ukraine crisis: a post-Helsinki world?”, held at Ditchley Park in February is now available.
It is not uncommon for some quirk of circumstance to render the subject of a conference unexpectedly topical, but no one could easily have anticipated how much more urgent discussions would become with tragic events unfolding in eastern Ukraine and on the streets of Moscow, even as the conference was underway.  Views were divided as to whether the Minsk II ceasefire agreement, only a few days old, would be successful over time.  There was, however, universal agreement that it was vital that it should hold.
A key question to which participants repeatedly returned was the state of Russia and the intent and aims of Russian foreign policy.  Most round the table were pessimistic about the direction the country was taking, but sure that a dialogue should nevertheless be maintained at different levels in the hope of re-establishing cooperation and better relations in the longer term.
This was not a conference for neat conclusions or recommendations. Instead the summary attempts to reflect the full richness of the discussions. To read the full report click here