The rejection of Ukraine to receive the visit of the German President, Frank Walter Steinmeier, widened the cracks between Berlin Yes Kyivwhich demands European power for military supplies and the embargo on Russian gas and receives as friends the leaders of Poland and the Baltic countries.
“I have been informed that my presence was not desired in the country”Steinmeier had to admit to the German media, during his official visit to warsawafter revealing to the popular newspaper “Bild” that President Volodymyr Zelensky She had refused to receive him.
The German President withdrew from a trip that should have been an expression of European solidarity, while his counterparts from Poland, Lithuania, Latvia Yes Estonia -Andrzej Duda, Gitanas Nauseda, Egils Levits and Alar Karis-.
The mission had been prepared on the initiative of Warsaw. The Polish Prime Minister and the leader of the ruling party “Law and Justice” (Pee), Mateusz Morawiecki Yes Jaroslaw KaczynskiThey had ordered in March what was the first trip by Western leaders to kyiv since the start of the Russian invasion.
Past and present affronts
In the background of the no from kyiv to Berlin, pending stories from the past and also messages from the present are added. Ukrainian Ambassador to Germany, Andrij Melnykclarified that the one who wants to see in kyiv is the Chancellor Olaf Scholzto be the latter responsible for executive decisions such as the embargo not only on coal, but also on Russian gas and oil.
Berlin Deputy Government Spokesman Wolfgang Buchnerdeclined to comment on whether or not Scholz was ready to make the trip, after saying that as head of government he had been “several times in telephone contact” with Zelensky. The last conversation between the two leaders dates back to last Sunday, he recalled.
Zelenski was listened to with respect by the German Parliament, during a virtual intervention last March, recalled the spokesperson. Ukraine “was about to receive the highest institutional representative of the country”he says in reference to Steinmeier, who “He was re-elected in February by a very broad political consensus”he added.
Ukraine’s rejection of the president’s visit, an eminently representative position, comes days after Steinmeier admitted “errors of judgment” in its past defense of the gas pipeline North streampillar of Germany’s current energy dependence on Russia.
Steinmeier was Minister of Chancellery under the Social Democrat Gerhard Schröder (1998-2005), who a few months before leaving power signed the agreement for the construction of the first gas pipeline with his ally and friend, President Vladimir Putin.
under the curator Angela Merkel (2005-2021), Social Democrat Steinmeier served as Foreign Minister in two legislatures. He shared with Merkel the decision to go ahead with the North Flow 2 despite the annexation of Crimea in 2014 and Ukrainian warnings against the gas pipeline.
Steinmeier, like the whole Social Democratic Party (SPD) German, was identified from kyiv as a representative of the “proximity” to Moscow.
It has become embarrassing for German social democracy to have to confront Schröder’s stubbornness in not breaking with Putin – or his positions on the boards of Nord Stream and Rosneft. The rejection now of the presidential visit forces Berlin to juggle to avoid the end “affront”.
Scholz’s spokesman defended “solidarity commitment” Steinmeier with Ukraine and declined to comment on whether Zelensky’s refusal was a “All Germany Showdown” as he was asked during a routine appearance.
“It is clear that we are on the side of Ukraine. We support Ukraine and its right to defend itself with absolute solidarity”affirmed, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, the green Annalena Baerbockduring his work trip to mali.
The head of German diplomacy, like the whole of the environmentalist party, has repeatedly called for the suspension of the Nord Stream when she was in opposition. Already partners of Scholz, the Greens have constantly criticized Russia’s energy dependence resulting from the “close to Moscow”under Schröder or under Merkel.
They are also urging their government to speed up the arms deliveries that kyiv is demanding, while Scholz’s Social Democrats remain paralyzed between licensing issues and other arguments.