Sat Feb 25th, 2023 at 08:09:21 PM EST
Few may have missed that China is trying to broker peace in Ukraine.
In similar fashion to how the US government presented its position after world war one in idealistic fashion in Wilson's 14 points China has released China's Position on the Political Settlement of the Ukraine Crisis.
They are clearly written and while trying to apply principles on geopolitics may be a fool's errand, I think it is both interesting that they try and any attempt by a major power to broker peace must be welcomed at this point.
The application of the principles isn't as clear. Below the fold I will quote the principle's and my interpretation of how a peace based on them would look.
At last, a ray of light, Frontpaged - Frank Schnittger
1. Respecting the sovereignty of all countries. Universally recognized international law, including the purposes and principles of the United Nations Charter, must be strictly observed. The sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of all countries must be effectively upheld. All countries, big or small, strong or weak, rich or poor, are equal members of the international community. All parties should jointly uphold the basic norms governing international relations and defend international fairness and justice. Equal and uniform application of international law should be promoted, while double standards must be rejected.
1. No border change by force. Return to Ukraine's pre-war border.
2. Abandoning the Cold War mentality. The security of a country should not be pursued at the expense of others. The security of a region should not be achieved by strengthening or expanding military blocs. The legitimate security interests and concerns of all countries must be taken seriously and addressed properly. There is no simple solution to a complex issue. All parties should, following the vision of common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security and bearing in mind the long-term peace and stability of the world, help forge a balanced, effective and sustainable European security architecture. All parties should oppose the pursuit of one's own security at the cost of others' security, prevent bloc confrontation, and work together for peace and stability on the Eurasian Continent.
2. No NATO expansion in Ukraine. New security architecture for Europe.
3. Ceasing hostilities. Conflict and war benefit no one. All parties must stay rational and exercise restraint, avoid fanning the flames and aggravating tensions, and prevent the crisis from deteriorating further or even spiraling out of control. All parties should support Russia and Ukraine in working in the same direction and resuming direct dialogue as quickly as possible, so as to gradually deescalate the situation and ultimately reach a comprehensive ceasefire.
3. Seize fire along the current line of contact.
4. Resuming peace talks. Dialogue and negotiation are the only viable solution to the Ukraine crisis. All efforts conducive to the peaceful settlement of the crisis must be encouraged and supported. The international community should stay committed to the right approach of promoting talks for peace, help parties to the conflict open the door to a political settlement as soon as possible, and create conditions and platforms for the resumption of negotiation. China will continue to play a constructive role in this regard.
4. Then peace negotiations. China offers its services as peace broker.
5. Resolving the humanitarian crisis. All measures conducive to easing the humanitarian crisis must be encouraged and supported. Humanitarian operations should follow the principles of neutrality and impartiality, and humanitarian issues should not be politicized. The safety of civilians must be effectively protected, and humanitarian corridors should be set up for the evacuation of civilians from conflict zones. Efforts are needed to increase humanitarian assistance to relevant areas, improve humanitarian conditions, and provide rapid, safe and unimpeded humanitarian access, with a view to preventing a humanitarian crisis on a larger scale. The UN should be supported in playing a coordinating role in channeling humanitarian aid to conflict zones.
5. UN humanitarian aid, which also means UN observers.
6. Protecting civilians and prisoners of war (POWs). Parties to the conflict should strictly abide by international humanitarian law, avoid attacking civilians or civilian facilities, protect women, children and other victims of the conflict, and respect the basic rights of POWs. China supports the exchange of POWs between Russia and Ukraine, and calls on all parties to create more favorable conditions for this purpose.
6. Exchange of prisoners.
7. Keeping nuclear power plants safe. China opposes armed attacks against nuclear power plants or other peaceful nuclear facilities, and calls on all parties to comply with international law including the Convention on Nuclear Safety (CNS) and resolutely avoid man-made nuclear accidents. China supports the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in playing a constructive role in promoting the safety and security of peaceful nuclear facilities.
7. IAEA inspections to control nuclear plants.
8. Reducing strategic risks. Nuclear weapons must not be used and nuclear wars must not be fought. The threat or use of nuclear weapons should be opposed. Nuclear proliferation must be prevented and nuclear crisis avoided. China opposes the research, development and use of chemical and biological weapons by any country under any circumstances.
8. New negatiations to decrease the risks of weapons of mass destruction. (New treaties with US, Russia and China this time?)
9. Facilitating grain exports. All parties need to implement the Black Sea Grain Initiative signed by Russia, Türkiye, Ukraine and the UN fully and effectively in a balanced manner, and support the UN in playing an important role in this regard. The cooperation initiative on global food security proposed by China provides a feasible solution to the global food crisis.
9. Getting grain exports up and running.
10. Stopping unilateral sanctions. Unilateral sanctions and maximum pressure cannot solve the issue; they only create new problems. China opposes unilateral sanctions unauthorized by the UN Security Council. Relevant countries should stop abusing unilateral sanctions and "long-arm jurisdiction" against other countries, so as to do their share in deescalating the Ukraine crisis and create conditions for developing countries to grow their economies and better the lives of their people.
10. Lift sanctions against Russia.
11. Keeping industrial and supply chains stable. All parties should earnestly maintain the existing world economic system and oppose using the world economy as a tool or weapon for political purposes. Joint efforts are needed to mitigate the spillovers of the crisis and prevent it from disrupting international cooperation in energy, finance, food trade and transportation and undermining the global economic recovery.
11. Preserving the current world economy with its industrial and supply chains.
12. Promoting post-conflict reconstruction. The international community needs to take measures to support post-conflict reconstruction in conflict zones. China stands ready to provide assistance and play a constructive role in this endeavor.
12. Re-building Ukraine. China offers its services.
Hm, they don't come in any particular order, I'll try to throw these in some buckets:
Humanitarian relief for Ukraine, preventing nuclear disasters in Ukraine
- Seize fire along the current line of contact.
- Then peace negotiations. China offers its services as peace broker.
- Exchange of prisoners.
- (a) No NATO expansion in Ukraine.
- No border change by force. Return to Ukraine's pre-war border.
Economic return to "normal"
- UN humanitarian aid, which also means UN observers.
- IAEA inspections to control nuclear plants.
Future world order:
- Getting grain exports up and running.
- Lift sanctions against Russia.
- (b) New security architecture for Europe.
- New negotiations to decrease the risks of weapons of mass destruction. (New nuclear arms treaties with US, Russia and China this time?)
- Preserving the current world economy with its industrial and supply chains.
- Re-building Ukraine. China offers its services.
I think it is a resonable starting point. Lots of details, including the order of items, can be hashed out in the peace negotiations.
Russia gets (2) a stop to Nato expansion, new security architechture for Europe, (10 & 11) a return to economic integration with EU, and new negotiations for global treaties on weapons of mass destruction with China as a partner.
Ukraine gets (1) return to Ukraine's pre-war border, (5) UN humanitarian aid, (12) re-building with China's help.
World (including China) gets (7) IAEA inspections to control nuclear plants, (9) grain exports up and running, (11) Preserving the current world economy with its industrial and supply chains.
I think a larger question is if the US is prepared for peace. The US as the global power would be diminshed if China brokers the peace.
Ukraine war: Zelensky wants Xi Jinping meeting following China's peace plan
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has said he plans to meet China's leader Xi Jinping to discuss Beijing's proposals on ending the war in Ukraine.
Speaking on the first anniversary of Russia's full-scale invasion, he said the proposal signalled that China was involved in the search for peace.
Meanwhile, Russia hailed the Chinese peace proposals. "We share Beijing's views," the foreign ministry in Moscow said in a statement.
Asked about the Chinese plan, US President Joe Biden told ABC News on Friday: "[Russian President Vladimir] Putin's applauding it, so how could it be any good?
"I've seen nothing in the plan that would indicate that there is something that would be beneficial to anyone other than Russia," he added.
China appears to be siding with Russia, though it would like to find a way of rescuing President Putin by arranging some kind of face-saving peace deal, says the BBC's World Affairs Editor John Simpson.
So much for previous claims from US that Ukraine decides when peace comes.