According to The Guardian, the recipe for restoring peace in Ukraine is simple: it is necessary to put pressure on Putin until he chooses peace.
While Russia "sponsors" the terrorists in the east of Ukraine, the sanctions can not be eased: Putin will accept the language of diplomacy, as a demonstration of European weakness, states the article "The Guardian View of war in Ukraine: maintain the pressure on Russia," published in the issue.
The authors write that the pro-Russian separatists and Ukrainian soldiers are still fighting for the ruins left of the Donetsk airport. It has a symbolic meaning for both sides: the Ukrainian soldiers are claiming to have recaptured ground they had earlier lost but the separatists do not stop the fire. This is the case when diplomacy "has all but stalled", so in Brussels the EU foreign ministers have made a conclusion that there are no reasons for easing sanctions against Russia.
Therefore, the strategic plan developed by the EU's foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini, for a graduated reduction in sanctions in return for Russian concessions and cooperation in Ukraine and elsewhere has been set aside.
The article emphasizes that the confrontation at the airport is not "just nasty little shootout between local militias and the underequipped and inexperienced battalions of the Ukrainian army." This is an example of the worst crime in Europe since the Balkan wars of the 1990s, committed according to geopolitical calculations of President Vladimir Putin, furbishing his anti-western narrative while crushing dissent within Russia.
It's no longer a secret that the Russian army is actively involved in supporting the Donetsk and Luhansk separatists in order not to let Ukraine restore sovereignty over its internationally recognized territory. Thanks to Russia this war has gone on for so long. As soon as the insurgents begin to lose Russia helpfully provides them with troops and weaponry. Not only Ukrainian military but also the civilian population of the Donbas dies. In the worst recent incident a rebel shell struck a bus near Volnovakha killing 12 local residents and wounding 17. In total, according to WHO, the conflict in the Donbas has killed more than 4,800 people.
Recent attempts to get peace talks going have failed. Due to the fact that the so-called Minsk cease-fire agreement reached in September has been violated, there is no way to achieve real prospects of progress. This was the reason for Angela Merkel's refusal to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Kazakhstan.
The authors emphasize that Russia has not fulfilled its side of the 12-point ceasefire agreement, the most important of which are the withdrawal of troops from the border with Ukraine and the deployment of international monitors on the same border. In this situation, any diplomatic opening to Vladimir Putin would be meaningless and show European weakness. And Europe has no other measures of influence on Russia, except for the sanctions. And they will not be eased.