Cannot be clearer. The only way to achieve peace is “to provide the necessary weapons and assistance to Ukraine and, finally, to recognise Russia as a sponsor of terrorism.” That’s what Yaroslav Melnyk, the Ukrainian ambassador to Italy, wrote in a letter addressed to Giuseppe Conte, leader of the Five Star Movement.
- The diplomat called on Conte to “take into account” Ukrainian positions ahead of the November 5 peace rally in Rome. “Every voice in support of peace is important, but these voices should sound responsible and balanced, avoid confusing ‘the aggressor’ with ‘the aggressed’ and avoid shifting the blame from the criminal to those fighting him.”
Setting the record straight. This “does not mean that Ukraine will never talk to Russia,” he added, but the attacks and deaths “do not give the right to portray Ukrainians who do not surrender as militarists and radicals. We all understand that all wars end in negotiations, but that is precisely why it is necessary to give an adequate response to the aggressor.”
- The new government headed by Giorgia Meloni is ready to keep its promises to allies and Ukraine by greenlighting a new military aid package to Kyiv.
Conte’s reaction. The 5SM leader spoke out against sending more weapons to Ukraine. “We have already” been providing Kyiv with weapons “for seven months,” he explained, noting that now “we must work for peace” rather than “dastardly rearmament rushes”.
- This is not his first political balancing act on the war. He has condemned the invasion but never explicitly criticised Russian President Vladimir Putin – and often called into question the sanctions imposed by the West in response to the war.