Europa blundert met Oekraïne

BERLIJN – De Europese Unie heeft waarschijnlijk nooit eerder zoiets meegemaakt: de regering van de Oekraïense president Viktor Janoekovitsj pretendeerde over een associatieovereenkomst te onderhandelen, om er op het laatste moment uit te stappen. De leiders van de EU voelden zich gedupeerd, in Moskou was de stemming echter feestelijk.

Zoals we nu weten was de echte motivatie van Janoekovitsj voor de onderhandelingen om de prijs op te drijven die Rusland zou betalen om Oekraïne binnen zijn invloedssfeer te houden. Slechts een paar dagen later kondigden Janoekovitsj en de Russische president Poetin een Russische lening van 15 miljard dollar aan, een verlaging van de gasprijzen en verschillende handelsovereenkomsten.

Vanuit het standpunt van Janoekovitsj was deze overeenkomst op de korte termijn logisch: de gasdeal zou Oekraïne helpen de winter te overleven, de lening zou ervoor zorgen dat ze hun schulden kunnen afbetalen en de Russische markt, waar de economie op drijft, zou toegankelijk blijven. Op de middellange termijn echter krijgt Oekraïne door het afwijzen van de EU en het omhelzen van Rusland te maken met het risico van het verlies van zijn onafhankelijkheid (waarop de post-Sovjet orde in Europa gebaseerd is).

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