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Henry Kissinger has said that the West should stop trying to inflict a crushing defeat on Russia and suggested that Ukraine should give up territory.
Former US secretary of state Mr Kissinger, 98, told the World Economic Forum held in Davos, Switzerland that Ukraine must begin negotiations ‘before it creates upheavals and tensions that will not be easily overcome’.
‘Ideally, the dividing line should be a return to the status quo ante. Pursuing the war beyond that point would not be about the freedom of Ukraine, but a new war against Russia itself,’ he told the conference on Monday.
It came as Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said in a powerful speech to open this week’s Davos summit in Switzerland that brute force will once again rule the world if Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is allowed to go unanswered.
He told delegates that their summit will become pointless if Putin is allowed to win the war because he is ‘not interested in our thoughts’ and ‘brute force… does not talk, it kills.’
But Mr Kissinger said it would be ‘fatal’ for the West to get swept up in the ‘mood of the moment’ and forget Russia’s position of power within Europe.
The former US secretary of state Henry Kissinger (pictured on the screen) told the global elite that Ukraine should give Russia territory within the next two months and accept terms that fail to meet their current war aims
Mr Kissinger, 98, told the World Economic Forum held in Davos, Switzerland that Ukraine must begin negotiations ‘before it creates upheavals and tensions that will not be easily overcome’. Kissinger, pictured with Vladimir Putin in March 2009
According to The Telegraph, he explained that Russia was an ‘essential part of Europe’ for over four centuries, noting that European leaders must ‘not lose sight of the longer term relationship’ or otherwise risk putting Russia in a permanent alliance with China.
He also said: ‘I hope the Ukrainians will match the heroism they have shown with wisdom.’
Volodymyr Zelensky told the meeting that brute force will once again rule the world if Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is allowed to go unanswered in a powerful speech to open this week’s Davos summit in Switzerland.
The Ukrainian President told delegates that their summit will become pointless if Putin is allowed to win the war because he is ‘not interested in our thoughts’ and ‘brute force… does not talk, it kills.’
Zelensky’s speech came at the start of four days of talks during which Ukraine is expected to launch a global charm offensive in order to secure economic and military backing to ensure its survival.
Volodymyr Zelensky told Davos (pictured) that brute force will once again rule the world if Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is allowed to go unanswered in a powerful speech to open this week’s Davos summit in Switzerland
Russia will not be at the Davos meeting this year after organisers banned Moscow from sending a delegation in just the latest signal of how isolated Putin has become on the world stage.
‘The main theme for this year’s Davos [summit] is: ‘History at a Turning Point”, Zelensky told a packed auditorium on Monday morning.
‘This year, the words ‘turning point’ are more than a rhetorical talking point. This year is really the year when it is decided whether brute force will rule the world.
‘If so, the powerful are not interested in our thoughts and there is no further use for meeting in Davos.
‘Brute force seeks nothing but the subjugation of those who it seeks to subdue and it does not talk, it kills, as Russia does in Ukraine just as we speak today.
Recalling the horrors of Russia’s invasion to date, Zelesnky added: ‘Instead of peaceful cities there are only black ruins, instead of normal trade [there are] seas full of mines and blocked ports, instead of tourists [there are] closed skies and the sound of Russian bombs and cruise missiles.
‘This is what the world would look like if that turning moment does not have a proper response from humanity, it would resemble a large set of war crimes.’
The Ukrainian President (pictured on screen) told delegates that their summit will become pointless if Putin is allowed to win the war because he is ‘not interested in our thoughts’ and ‘brute force… does not talk, it kills’
Zelensky’s speech came at the start of four days of talks during which Ukraine is expected to launch a global charm offensive in order to secure economic and military backing to ensure its survival
Zelensky also pointed to Russia House – a conference venue in the city which typically hosts the delegation – which this year has been turned into ‘Russian war crimes house.’
He said this is an example of ‘what Russia brings to the world’, while urging leaders to condemn the atrocities.
German vice-chancellor Robert Habeck had an angry outburst at the summit while accusing Hungary and various other uncooperative countries of stopping attempts of an oil embargo by the EU. ‘We are seeing the worst of Europe,’ he said.
Russia has faced serious economic sanctions since their invasion of Ukraine on 24 February, with the nation now facing a food and energy crisis.
Mr Habeck said: ‘I expect everyone to work to find a solution, and not to sit back and work on building their partnership with Putin.’
The vice-chancellor who is also the country’s economy minister, added that Germany is ‘ready to endure the shock’ of a Russian oil imports cut-off.
Energy minister for India Shri Hardeep Pury, when suggestions were made that his country should stop in its business with buying Russian oil, said: ‘The Europeans buy more Russian energy in an afternoon than we do in a quarter.’
Russia House, a conference centre in Davos, Switzerland, typically used by the Russian delegation, has been turned into ‘War Crimes House’ after the country was banned
Ukraine has dispatched the second-largest contingent of any country to Davos as part of a global charm offensive to secure backing for its fight-back against Russia
WEF founder Klaus Schwab said last week that Davos would do what it can to support Ukraine and its recovery.
‘Russia’s aggression on the country will be seen in future history books as the breakdown of the post-World War II and post-Cold War order,’ he said.
More than 50 heads of state or government will be among the 2,500 delegates, ranging from business leaders to academics and civil society figures.
Some of the biggest names include Germany’s new chancellor, Olaf Scholz, European Union chief Ursula von der Leyen, NATO head Jens Stoltenberg and US climate envoy John Kerry.
While the summit is back, it lacks its usual snowy backdrop as the Omicron variant forced this year’s January meeting to be postponed until now. Instead, rain is forecast all week.
Climate change and concerns about the economic recovery from the pandemic are also at the forefront of the Davos talks.
Inflation has become a major concern as energy and food prices have soared further since Russia invaded Ukraine, raising fears of hunger in countries dependent on wheat from the region.
Military snipers stand guard over Davos’s main conference centre, as the world’s elite arrive for a four-day conference themed ‘History at a Turning Point’
A Swiss sharpshooter looks out over the crowd of delegates arriving in Davos as the conference gets underway without a Russian delegation
Global charity Oxfam warned Monday that 263 million people could sink into extreme poverty this year, at a rate of one million every 33 hours.
By contrast, 573 new billionaires have emerged during the pandemic, or one every 30 hours, Oxfam said as it called for taxes on the rich.
‘Billionaires are arriving in Davos to celebrate an incredible surge in their fortunes,’ Oxfam executive director Gabriela Bucher said in a statement.
‘The pandemic and now the steep increases in food and energy prices have, simply put, been a bonanza for them,’ Bucher said.
‘Meanwhile, decades of progress on extreme poverty are now in reverse and millions of people are facing impossible rises in the cost of simply staying alive,’ she said.
Ukraine is expected to use the conference to plead for continued military and financial support to win its fight-back against Russia’s invasion