‘Great propaganda success for Putin’: Trittin calls for Steinmeier’s invitation to be withdrawn – Politics

Foreign policy spokesman for the Greens in the Bundestag, Jürgen Trittin, calls on Ukraine to reverse its cancellation of Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier’s visit to kyiv. “It doesn’t work like that,” Trittin told Editorial Network Germany (RND).

“Declaring the German head of state, who has just been re-elected, an undesirable person is a great propaganda success for Vladimir Putin.” If you want to divide Europeans, then you have to do it like the Ukrainian president. “We expect Ukraine to take that back.”

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On Tuesday evening, we learned that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyj apparently did not want to receive Frank-Walter Steinmeier in kyiv. The Federal President’s planned trip to Ukraine has erupted.

In recent days, Polish President Andrzej Duda had offered to visit the Ukrainian capital with the heads of state of the Baltic states “to send and pose a strong sign of common European solidarity with Ukraine”, Steinmeier said on Tuesday during of his visit to Warsaw. “I was ready for that. But obviously – and I have to take note – it wasn’t wanted in Kyiv.”

In an interview with CNN on Wednesday, an adviser to Zelenskyy’s chief of staff, Serhiy Leshchenko, claimed that Steinmeier was not disinvited at all. There was no further comment from Kyiv itself. As the Tagesspiegel learned, there was a formal rejection at ambassadorial level.

Frank Walter Steinmeier.Photo: IMAGO/Eastnews

First, the “Bild” newspaper reported that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy refused a visit by the Federal President to Kyiv. The reason is Steinmeier’s close ties to Russia in recent years, the newspaper writes.


Instead, Ukraine is now inviting Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) to kyiv. “We also communicated that my president and the government would be very happy if Chancellor Olaf Scholz visited Kyiv,” Ukraine’s Ambassador to Berlin Andrij Melnyk said Tuesday evening on ProSieben and SAT.1.

The visit is expected to focus on how Germany can help Ukraine with heavy weapons in the fight against Russia. “My president is looking forward to this,” Melnyk said.

Andriy Melnyk is Ambassador of Ukraine.Photo: IMAGO/Christian Spicker

From 1999 to 2005 the Federal President was Head of the Chancellery of Gerhard Schröder and from 2005 to 2009 and from 2013 to 2017 Federal Minister of Foreign Affairs. In his previous role, he had pursued a policy of involving Russia and had also supported the controversial Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project. A week ago, he then admitted for the first time to errors in his Russian policy and drawn up a “bitter balance sheet”. He explained that he was wrong about Russian President Vladimir Putin.

“My assessment was that Vladimir Putin would not accept the complete economic, political and moral ruin of his country for his imperial folly,” Steinmeier said. His support for the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project was also clearly a mistake. “We clung to bridges that Russia no longer believed in and that our partners had warned us against.”

More information about the war in Ukraine on Tagesspiegel Plus:

Ukraine’s ambassador to Berlin, Andriy Melnyk, had earlier strongly criticized the federal president and, in an interview with Tagesspiegel, accused him of having “weaved a spider’s web of contacts with Russia for decades” . Melnyk said he didn’t buy Mr. Steinmeier’s acknowledgment of his mistakes in Russian politics. However, the sentences had fallen before Steinmeier’s admission of error.

surprise at cancellation

In Berlin, Ukraine’s actions aroused astonishment. “The Federal President takes a clear and unequivocal position on the side of Ukraine,” said a government spokesman.

After his re-election, Steinmeier appealed to Russian President Vladimir Putin: “Let go of the noose around Ukraine’s neck!” and stressed that no country in the world has the right to destroy Ukraine’s self-determination and sovereignty. “Germany was and is one of Ukraine’s strongest supporters internationally and this is closely linked to the many years of work of the current Federal President,” the spokesperson continued.

“The Federal President’s trip to kyiv would have been a clear sign of solidarity in foreign policy,” SPD parliamentary group leader Rolf Mützenich told the “Rheinische Post”. “I remain convinced that a visit by the Federal President could have underlined the continued support of our country,” he added.

Meanwhile, former party MP Ralf Stegner wrote on Twitter: “A visit by our head of state to Ukraine would have expressed German solidarity with Ukraine, which has been overrun by Putin’s army, d especially since we also bring enormous economic, political, humanitarian and military resources. support in comparison. Steinmeier’s critique of Russian policy lacked “political substance,” Stegner continued. Mistakes such as heavy dependence on Russian energy supplies would be corrected.

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