The expert assessed the progress of the Russian-American negotiations on security
“We got the impression that the American side took the Russian proposals very seriously and carried out their in-depth study,” said Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov following the Russian-American consultations on security guarantees held in Geneva on Monday. However, this is perhaps the only uniquely positive characterization of the ended meeting that he gave out. We asked the MGIMO professor, retired SVR colonel Andrei Bezrukov to evaluate its results.
– I think there is no particular reason for either pessimism or optimism. Well, perhaps such limited optimism. In fact, the course of what happened today was determined at the meeting between Biden and Putin. If some things had not been agreed – I am not talking about fundamental things – then today's meeting, in principle, would not have taken place. The meeting was working. Its participants, as was expected, exchanged information. We came, perhaps, to some technical solutions – what to do next, how to continue these negotiations.
Two more meetings will now take place (on January 12, a meeting of the Russia-NATO Council will take place in Brussels, and on January 13 – negotiations between representatives of Russia and the OSCE in Vienna – MK). Purely formal, because on those sites – Russia-NATO and the OSCE – it is basically impossible to solve anything. Then they will go and report on the results of these negotiations. And then decisions will be made on what to do with it.
So we parted now, in general, with zero information load. Everything that was said was already clear before this meeting. But the good news is that none of those who could arrange some kind of nasty in order to disrupt these negotiations did nothing.
– Oh sure. And I think that some fundamental decisions have already been made. At least – on certain issues. Otherwise, people simply would not have met in Geneva.
– This can be guessed by the decisions that have not yet been made. The same Sherman (US Deputy Secretary of State – “MK”) stated that the Americans could not give guarantees that Ukraine would not join NATO. But this was understandable. But she did not comment on the rest of the Russian demands. This means that we can move forward on these issues. As for Ukraine, this issue can be resolved in a completely different way. Let me fantasize: if it is impossible to adopt some binding documents on the non-entry of Ukraine into NATO at the NATO level, then it is possible, for example, to adopt amendments to the country's constitution – that they themselves will never ask for it. This is done with one call from the White House to Zelensky.
– I don't even want to think about it. Why fantasize that it is impossible even to predict? But the American side is fully aware of the seriousness of the situation. Otherwise, Biden simply would not have sat down at the negotiating table.