In the final declaration of the peace conference at the luxury Bürgenstock resort in Switzerland, the majority of participants declared their support for the territorial integrity of Ukraine: 84 out of 92 representatives present signed the declaration. Measures for the country's food and energy security were also outlined. A follow-up event, possibly in Saudi Arabia or Turkey, is still being negotiated.

Hybrid solutions finally rejected

Political scientist Olesya Yakhno welcomes the West's approach on Facebook:

“It is only in the third year of Russia's full-scale invasion that the West seems to be waking up and formulating its approach to peace. An approach based on a clear strengthening of Ukraine's military components and the need to return to the principles of international law. All 'hybrid' solutions are finally being rejected and the realisation is dawning: either humanity defeats war through joint action or war will defeat humanity.”


Kyiv needs facts on the frontline

Zelensky has every reason to be satisfied, El País sums up:

“At three summits this past week, the Ukraine Recovery Conference in Berlin, the G7 Summit in Bari and the one in Switzerland, Ukraine has achieved substantial political results ... The message to Putin is clear. With nuances regarding the commitment of the individual countries, the international community is telling him that it will not allow Ukraine to succumb for lack of military and diplomatic support. ... Kyiv now needs facts on the frontline. ... Under these conditions, ceasefire negotiations are possible, without preconditions.”

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OSCE condemned it as "a grave violation of participating states' commitments under international law" and called for the immediate release of Vadym Golda and two other jailed OSCE officials.

It's a start

Der Standard reflects on what direction things will take now:

“The declarations of dozens of heads of state and government reflect a general agreement that things cannot go on like this. The Gulf states, possibly Turkey, could play an active role, and India is joining in for the first time. There is already talk of a follow-up conference. The beginning of an end to the war and, indirectly, a subsequent peace conference may now be considered. Now the plan is to talk to Russia about food security, the safety of nuclear power plants in Ukraine and the exchange of prisoners of war and abducted children. It's a start.”


Switzerland has taken a stance

For Corriere del Ticino, despite several flaws this was the right outcome:

“A peace conference without the aggressor sitting at the negotiating table, a declaration without the signatures of some of the countries present, and a two-day Swiss conference with the Ukrainian head of state playing the host. All elements that might lead one to speak of a missed opportunity, if not a failed conference. But that is not the case. ... Our Switzerland, in a context where it is easier to make a wrong move than a right one, has responded 'present'. Of course we could have chosen to remain silent, but this attitude does not suit us, and we are proud of this.”

More bold diplomacy needed behind closed doors

A new strategy will be needed to resolve the Ukraine war, writes political scientist Pedro Ponte e Sousa in Público:


“The Cold War 2.0 environment, the logic of confrontational rather than cooperative security, the increase in militaristic rhetoric and investment and an escalation in rearmament that is increasing rather than reducing the threat are trapping all sides in echo chambers in which the unavoidable seems inevitable. Diplomacy and negotiations are increasingly necessary to break this vicious circle. Not public diplomacy with eloquent speeches to sway public opinion, but real negotiations behind closed doors, with gains and losses for each side, but always leading to a better situation than the cruel violence of the ongoing war.”

Putin induced to make a tactical error

Jutarnji list takes a closer look at Vladimir Putin's pre-conference calls on Kyiv to vacate the four contested regions of Kherson, Zaporizhzhia, Donetsk and Luhansk and renounce its Nato ambitions in order to make peace possible:

“Perhaps he has made a tactical error by officially naming specific goals in the war for the first time: namely control over four regions and a neutral status for Ukraine. Up to now Putin had avoided being this specific, and that has given him a lot of room for manoeuvre. He could present an outcome that included maintaining Russian control over the occupied territories as his victory before, but now he has deprived himself of this possibility.”

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