Motion for a resolution - B7-0444/2014Motion for a resolution

MOTION FOR A RESOLUTION on Russian pressure on Eastern Partnership countries and in particular destabilisation of eastern Ukraine

15.4.2014 - (2014/2699(RSP))

to wind up the debate on the statement by the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy
pursuant to Rule 110(2) of the Rules of Procedure

José Ignacio Salafranca Sánchez-Neyra, Elmar Brok, Mairead McGuinness, Jacek Saryusz-Wolski, Laima Liucija Andrikienė, Roberta Angelilli, Elena Băsescu, Anna Maria Corazza Bildt, Jerzy Buzek, Arnaud Danjean, Mário David, Mariya Gabriel, Michael Gahler, Paweł Zalewski, Gunnar Hökmark, Anna Ibrisagic, Tunne Kelam, Jan Kozłowski, Eduard Kukan, Elżbieta Katarzyna Łukacijewska, Monica Luisa Macovei, Nadezhda Neynsky, Ria Oomen-Ruijten, Alojz Peterle, Andrej Plenković, Bernd Posselt, Cristian Dan Preda, György Schöpflin, Salvador Sedó i Alabart, Inese Vaidere, Sophie Auconie, Joanna Katarzyna Skrzydlewska, Algirdas Saudargas, Philippe Juvin, Andrey Kovatchev, Radvilė Morkūnaitė-Mikulėnienė on behalf of the PPE Group

See also joint motion for a resolution RC-B7-0436/2014

Procedure : 2014/2699(RSP)
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European Parliament resolution on Russian pressure on Eastern Partnership countries and in particular destabilisation of eastern Ukraine


The European Parliament,

–       having regard to its previous resolutions on the European Neighbourhood Policy, on the Eastern Partnership (EaP) and on Ukraine, with particular reference to its resolution of 13 March 2014 on the invasion of Ukraine by Russia[1],

–       having regard to the conclusions of the European Council on Ukraine of 20 March 2014,

–       having regard to the statement of the NATO-Ukraine Commission of 1 April 2014,

–       having regard to the Joint Statement of the G7 leaders meeting in The Hague on 24 March 2014,

–       having regard to its legislative resolution of 3 April 2014 on the reduction or elimination of customs duties on goods originating in Ukraine[2],

–       having regard to the Conclusions of the Foreign Affairs Council on Ukraine of 14 April 2014,

–       having regard to Rule 110(2) of its Rules of Procedure,

A.     whereas the Russian Federation continues to step up its destabilisation and aggression in the east of Ukraine, taking advantage of separatists who seize public buildings and initiate unrest;

B.     whereas in several cities in eastern Ukraine, including Luhansk, Donetsk and Kharkiv, the pro-Russian separatists have announced preparations for ‘Crimea-like’ referendums to decide on the self-determination of the eastern regions of Ukraine on 11 May 2014;

C.     whereas any further escalation of violent destabilisation in eastern Ukraine risks being used by Russia as a false pretext for further aggression by military means, prevention of the presidential elections and the forced federalisation of Ukraine;

D.     whereas the EU and the international community do not and will not recognise the results of the illegal referendum in Crimea of 16 March 2014 and the subsequent incorporation of Crimea into the Russian Federation;

E.     whereas Russia continues to violate its international obligations, such as the UN Charter, the Helsinki Final Act, the Statute of the Council of Europe and, in particular, the 1994 Budapest Memorandum on security guarantees for Ukraine;

F.     whereas the EU is committed to signing Association Agreements (AAs) / Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreements (DCFTAs) with both Moldova and Georgia as soon as possible, and no later than June 2014;

G.     whereas the so-called referendum of 2 February 2014 in the Autonomous Territorial Unit of Gagauzia was conducted in contradiction with the Constitution and legislative framework of the Republic of Moldova and is therefore illegal; whereas the 5+2 format negotiations have not led to a sustainable solution to the Transnistrian conflict;

H.     whereas Russia continues to occupy the Georgian regions of Abkhazia and Tskhinvali (South Ossetia) in violation of the fundamental norms and principles of international law, and whereas the process of ‘borderisation’ has increased rapidly and violations of Georgian airspace by Russian military aircraft have taken place;

1.      Condemns in the strongest possible terms the escalating destabilisation and provocations in eastern Ukraine caused by overt and covert actions by Russia; rejects any preparation for illegal ‘Crimea-like’ referendums; warns that the increasing destabilisation and sabotage caused by pro-Russian armed, trained and well-coordinated Russian-led separatists could be used as a false pretext for Russia to intervene militarily, prevent the presidential elections and force federalisation as an instrument of partition of Ukraine;

2.      Expresses serious concern about the military operations led by Russia in eastern Ukraine; reiterates the necessity for the EU and its Member States to speak to Russia with one united voice; considers that the current situation requires the Council to strengthen the second phase of sanctions and be ready for the third phase of sanctions (economic sanctions), which must be applied immediately, and the continuation of the political, economic and financial isolation of Russia on the international stage;

3.      Reiterates, furthermore, its call on the Council to swiftly apply sanctions, including an arms and dual-use technology embargo, visa bans, freezing of assets and application of money laundering legislation against individuals involved in the decision-making process with respect to the destabilisation and provocations in eastern Ukraine, and measures against Russian companies and their subsidiaries, particularly in the energy sector, as well as Russian investments and assets in the EU, and to review all agreements with Russia with a view to possible suspension; welcomes the decision of the Council of 14 April 2014 to expand the list of those subject to asset freezing and visa bans;

4.      Calls for the introduction of economic, trade and financial restrictions in respect of Crimea and its separatist leadership; takes the view that rapid implementation thereof should take place on the basis of the Commission’s analysis of the legal consequences of Crimea’s annexation;

5.      Expresses its full support for the unity, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine; looks upon Russia’s acts as a grave violation of international law and its own international obligations stemming from the UN Charter, the Helsinki Final Act, the Statute of the Council of Europe and the 1994 Budapest Memorandum on security guarantees, as well as bilateral obligations deriving from the 1997 Bilateral Treaty on Friendship, Cooperation and Partnership; welcomes the decision to suspend Russian voting rights in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe;

6.      Calls on Russia to withdraw all Russian troops concentrated along the border with Ukraine and within Ukraine, and to immediately withdraw the mandate of the Federation Council to use force on Ukrainian soil; demands that all acts leading to any destabilisation of the situation in Ukraine, whether from the inside or from outside, be stopped immediately; is of the opinion that any political demands need to be addressed in a non-violent way through appropriate and legitimate fora; demands that Russia not organise any separatist demands of any kind, such as the illegal referendums regarding the eastern regions of Ukraine, and that it distance itself publicly from the latest lawless events in eastern Ukraine, as they violate its sovereignty and territorial integrity;

7.      Calls on the Council to assist Ukraine in the field of civilian security-sector reform, to provide support for the police, border control and the rule of law through a robust CSDP mission, and to prepare a political framework for crisis approach (PFCA), examining all options in this respect as soon as possible;

8.      Calls on the Union to expand the existing Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) monitoring mission in order to send as many observers as possible to eastern Ukraine to witness and report on the situation on the ground, so as to counteract false pretexts for any possible further escalation; shares the concern expressed by the OSCE and the Council of Europe about restrictions on their ability to observe the situation in the area of human rights, including those of people belonging to national minorities, in Crimea;

9.      Calls, furthermore, for an in-depth election observation mission from the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODHIR), and also from Parliament and the EU, to monitor the elections comprehensively; calls for free and fair presidential elections on 25 May 2014, to be conducted in full compliance with international standards; rejects any external pressure to delay these elections;

10.    Expects Russia’s full commitment to a successful political outcome of the announced quadrilateral talks between the EU, the US, Russia and Ukraine on the basis of full respect for the territorial integrity of Ukraine, including the right of Ukraine to decide on its own constitution and political future; considers that if Russia does not show such a commitment, this will prove that it is working against a viable solution and just wants to win time;

11.    Welcomes the restrained and measured manner in which the Ukrainian Government has dealt with the current phase of the crisis so far, and recalls that the Ukrainian authorities have the full right to use all military measures to regain control over their territory;

12.    Urges the EU to support Ukraine in international bodies, particularly international judicial bodies, should Ukraine decide to bring cases against Russia for violation of its sovereignty and territorial integrity;

13.    Welcomes the announcement by the Ukrainian Government of an ambitious economic and social reform agenda, and highlights the vital importance of its swift implementation in order to stabilise and overcome the country’s critical financial situation; welcomes the decision of the international financial institutions and the Commission to provide Ukraine with substantial short- and long-term financial aid; recalls the need to organise and coordinate an international donor conference, which should be convened by the Commission and take place as soon as possible;

14.    Recalls that international financial assistance can only provide tangible results for Ukraine if it is subject to strictly enforced conditions and implementation of the government’s reform agenda; calls, therefore, on the Commission and the Member States to provide the necessary technical assistance for this agenda in order to strengthen the rule of law and eradicate corruption;

15.    Encourages Ukraine to continue to move ahead with its course of political reform, in particular constitutional reform; welcomes the will of the Ukrainian Government to implement its commitments to ensure the representative nature of governmental structures, reflecting regional diversity, to ensure furthermore the full protection of the rights of persons belonging to national minorities, to investigate all human rights violations and acts of violence and to fight extremism; in this context, welcomes the inauguration of the International Advisory Panel of the Council of Europe on 9 April 2014;

16.    Welcomes the recent resolution of the Ukrainian Parliament calling for the immediate disarmament of all illegal self-defence forces, and looks forward to its implementation;

17.    Expresses its strong support for Ukraine and its people in these difficult times; welcomes the signing of the political chapters of the Association Agreement and the subsequent adoption of the unilateral trade measures; calls for the signing of the full AA/DCFTA as soon as possible and before the expiration of the unilateral trade measures;

18.    Stresses the urgent need for a strong common energy security policy (an Energy Union), with the aim of reducing the EU’s dependency on Russian oil and gas, including the diversification of energy supply, the full implementation of the Third Energy Package and the possibility of suspension of gas imports when necessary; is of the opinion that South Stream should not be built; is convinced that EU assistance to Ukraine in securing reverse-flow supply through further diversification, enhanced energy efficiency and effective interconnections with the EU will strengthen Ukraine against political and economic pressures; in this regard, recalls the strategic role of the Energy Community, of which Ukraine holds the presidency in 2014;

19.    Calls on the Council to authorise the Commission immediately to speed up visa liberalisation with Ukraine, so as to advance along the path of introducing a visa-free regime, following the example of Moldova; calls, in the meantime, for the immediate introduction of temporary, very simple, low-cost visa procedures at EU and Member State level;

20.    Calls on the EU institutions and Member States to reach out and actively engage with EU public opinion and business communities in order to explain the meaning and consequences of Russia’s illegal actions as a direct threat to peace and prosperity in Europe;

21.    Recalls that, pursuant to Article 49 of the Treaty on European Union, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine – like any other European state – have a European perspective and may apply to become members of the Union, provided that they adhere to the principles of democracy, respect fundamental freedoms and human and minority rights, and safeguard the rule of law;

22.    Calls on the Council to sign the AAs/DCFTAs between the EU and its Member States and the Republic of Moldova and Georgia; expresses its approval of the proposal for a Council decision on the provisional application of the EU–Republic of Moldova and EU–Georgia Association Agreements immediately upon signature; urges the General Secretariat of the Council of the European Union to reduce the notification procedures following the signing of the Association Agreement, so that the provisional application can take effect as soon as possible after signing; states its intention, in the event of all requirements being met and the AAs subsequently being signed, to proceed with the full ratification of the EU–Republic of Moldova and EU–Georgia Association Agreements as soon as possible and before the end of the Commission’s current term; calls for the allocation to those countries of the additional financial assistance required;

23.    Calls for greater involvement of the EU in solving the Transnistrian conflict, including through the enhancement of the EU’s status in the ‘5+2’ talks to that of a negotiating partner;

24.    Calls on the Russian Federation to cease the violations of Georgian airspace and maritime zones, and strongly condemns the process of so-called ‘borderisation’ in Abkhazia and the Tskhinvali region (South Ossetia);

25.    Calls on Russia to abstain from any pressure on Moldova or Georgia to hinder or delay the signing of the respective AAs/DCFTAs; reiterates that the signing of AAs/DCFTAs is not an impediment to closer relations of Eastern neighbourhood countries with Russia; expresses its full support for the territorial integrity of all countries of the Eastern neighbourhood, and calls on Russia to refrain from any measures which would risk spreading the Ukrainian scenario to further countries;

26.    Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the governments of the Member States, the acting President, Government and Parliament of Ukraine, the Council of Europe, and the President, Government and Parliament of the Russian Federation.