16 Mar 2022 14:56

Model of Ukraine's neutral status can only be Ukrainian - presidential advisor Podolyak

KYIV. March 16 (Interfax-Ukraine) - A possible model of Ukraine's neutral status can only be Ukrainian, Mykhailo Podolyak, advisor to the Ukrainian presidential office chief, said on Wednesday, in commenting on remarks by Vladimir Medinsky, Russian presidential aide heading the Russian delegation at the negotiations with Ukraine, who suggested earlier that Ukraine proposed a so-called Austrian or Swedish variant of its future neutral status.

"Definitely, we understand that our partners are trying to retain initiative as a party to the negotiating process. Hence are the words on a Swedish or an Austrian neutrality model. But the model can only be Ukrainian, and only provided legally calibrated security guarantees. And no other models or options," Podolyak said in a commentary shared with Interfax-Ukraine.

This means that Ukraine needs absolute security guarantees, Podolyak said.

"Effective ones, rather than protocol-type or Budapest-type ones. And that means that the countries signing such guarantees wouldn't just stand by if Ukraine is attacked but would be actively involved in a conflict on the Ukrainian side and would officially ensure immediate supplies of the necessary amounts of weapons for us," he said.

"And secondly, Ukraine doesn't want to depend any longer on bureaucratic procedures that allow for or don't allow for closing its airspace, say, to cruise missiles. We need direct and rock-solid guarantees that the airspace would definitely be closed," Podolyak said.