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Sell: Nothing Alike Crimea to Kosovo

Kosovo case can not be used as an argument for developments in the Ukrainian Crimea, being that none of the developments that preceded independence of Kosovo has not happened in the Crimea, says in an interview with Radio Free Europe, former U.S. diplomat, Louis Sell. Mr. Sell has worked for many years within the U.S. State Department in countries of the former Soviet Union, then in Russia and the Balkans.

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RADIO FREE EUROPE
Mr. Sell, Russia is using the case of Kosovo as a justification for their actions in Ukraine’s Crimea. How do you see this argument, sustainable or distorted?

LOUIS RISKY
I think that is totally shtrembërruar even fabricated. Frankly, the analogy with Kosovo simply do not drink water, nor in the legal sense, or in the actual.

The most important thing to note here is the degree of persecution of people in these two countries respekitve. International intervention in Kosovo in 1999 came too late in my opinion, but only after Kosovo violence underwent a 10-year-old Milosevic, who at that time plagued Kosovo’s autonomy illegally and violently in 1989.

And then, in 1999, began the campaign of ethnic cleansing and genocide, persecution majority Albanian population outside of Kosovo. And only then, NATO launched a real humanitarian intervention, which forced the withdrawal of Serbian forces. And after all this ended, NATO not occupied, nor annexed Kosovo. Administration in Kosovo was established United Nations.

None of these has not been mentioned in the Crimea. In Crimea, the population lived in a more or less harmonious atmosphere. There have been no large-scale printing, and even small scale.

There were some periods when different groups are troubled because of certain relations with Ukraine or Russia and those concerns are resolved by agreement just between Ukraine and Russia.

Russian population in Crimea was not in any way threatened by events in Crimea. Each pretentim that something similar has happened are is false.

RADIO FREE EUROPE
Mr. Sell, nine years after the adoption of resolution 1244 of the Security Council of the United Nations, Kosovo declared independence, after international meet certain criteria to do so, after being subjected to, saying cost, a verification process . How do you respond to all the Moscow international pressure not to intervene in the Crimea?

LOUIS RISKY
Ahtisaari process, which alluded to here, is also a substantial difference between the Crimea and Kosovo. Once the situation was stabilized in Kosovo, since they were created institutions of self-government, only then launched an internationally supervised process of negotiations, which was to include all parties.

None of this has happened in the Crimea. This is a pure extortion by Russia.

If Russia was interested, but really think that the Russian population in Crimea is threatened, then we could engage in a mediation process, which already exists a basis which is called the Budapest Memorandum, achieved in 1994 and signed by Russia.

RADIO FREE EUROPE
Sell Lord, you have a rich experience in Russia and the former Soviet Union, given that you have been engaged in the U.S. State Department. Now, despite heavy international pressure, Putin hints that he would not give up his plans. There are also concerns that what is happening in the Crimea could spread to other countries inhabited by Russians.How have based these concerns?

LOUIS RISKY
Regarding Mr. Putin, it is difficult to predict what he will do in the future, but I think it is likely to spread. Russians are actually under their control have Crimea and seem determined to keep their pseudo-referendum.

Once this is completed, it is possible to start a negotiation, the Ukrainian government has said it is willing to do such a thing; United States and European Union have called for negotiations.

Is likely to initiate a negotiation process to review the status of Crimea – Ukraine within.On the other hand, every neighbor of Russia, Putin’s first feats and his regime in Georgia in 2008 and now what they did in the Crimea, without doubt should begin to think about the effects that may ensue.

RADIO FREE EUROPE
What should be the response of the international community on this issue, after a referendum in the Crimea … what else can the international community do?

LOUIS RISKY
Two things are important here, two principles: first, this is an example of international aggression and the international community – for reasons of principle and reason of actions in the future – can not stay aside and just be a spectator, namely Can not sit idle.

On the other hand, it is also important that this situation was not out of control. Nobody wants that all this lead to a conflict and the way to resolve this situation is beginning negotiations with all parties involved. There are many possible options, if there is good will on all sides.

RADIO FREE EUROPE
According to you, is this the beginning of a new era of the Cold War?

LOUIS RISKY
hope not. I do not think that should be so. Whether or not to start this new era, it really depends a lot on how Putin will choose to respond.

Source in Albanian

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