Henry Kissinger outlines path to peace in Ukraine at Davos

Former US secretary of state says Ukraine succeeded in defending itself and uniting West against Russia

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Former US secretary of state Henry Kissinger presented his map for peace between Ukraine and Russia during the World Economic Forum in Davos.

Speaking by video at the Davos summit, Mr Kissinger, who was secretary of state from 1969 to 1975 under presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford, outlined his vision for ending the conflict in Ukraine.

Fifty years after his controversial Nobel Peace Prize and nearing 100, he is still trying to guide the world forward.

“I think, again, that a ceasefire along the lines of invasion is reasonable outcome of the military actions,” Mr Kissinger said.

The German-born pillar of American foreign policy said Ukraine had succeeded in defending itself and in uniting the West against Russia.

“I want to express my admiration for the President of Ukraine and for the heroic conduct of the Ukrainian people,” Mr Kissinger said.

Under his proposed terms. Russia would withdraw its forces from all territory that it has seized since February 24, when it began its full-scale invasion.

That would not include Crimea, which Russia annexed in 2015 and which Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has made clear he wants back as a basis for any future peace.

Senator Joe Manchin also represented the US in a panel on Tuesday. AP

“Each side needs to consider for itself how the threat to human survival of the destructiveness of weapons, coupled with making them almost conscious in their application, can be dealt with,” Mr Kissinger said..

He said Ukraine has earned a right to join Nato if it so wished.

A central part of his peace framework, which he outlined last month in The Spectator, would be finding a way to allow Russia back into the European fold.

“We now hope that the courage of the period and the heroism of the period will be matched by a vision of a process which uses time as a step towards a strengthening of Europe and an opening to Russia, if it meets the required conditions to participate as a member in these European processes,” he said.

Mr Kissinger’s address comes just days after Reuters revealed that his 1973 Nobel Peace Prize was even more controversial than initially thought.

He was awarded the prize along with North Vietnam’s Le Duc Tho for their work on the Paris Peace Accords, which set the parameters for peace between the US and North Vietnam after nearly 20 years of war.

The accords failed to end the war and newly released information on the nomination of Mr Kissinger and Tho, who died in 1990, reveals that the committee knew the deal was unlikely to stop the fighting.

The conflict ended two years later in 1975 when the US chaotically withdrew from Saigon.

Tho refused to accept the award because of the continuing war, while Mr Kissinger repeatedly tried to return it.

The award and his involvement in US foreign policy towards the Vietnam War has long been a stain on his long resume.

Updated: January 18, 2023, 5:42 AM
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