Interview with Leonid Slutskiy, Head of the Russian Duma Committee for CIS Affairs by Ondras Fyoldas
Georgian Colleague: What is your position concerning the referendum? How soon will you discuss the decision of the Crimean people in Russian State Duma?
Russian Politician Let’s wait for the results of the referendum. We don’t know yet what the results will be … Let’s wait for the people of Crimea to freely express their will. If they vote for Russia, we’ll negotiate it as soon as possible in the Duma. As to the procedures, I am not ready to answer this question … I know for certain that it will not take much time … [And] with this, we will restore the historical justice: Crimea was always part of Russia.
Georgian Colleague What will happen if the international community will not recognise your decision?
Russian Politician Remember when we restored constitutional order in the Chechen Republic? Remember how we were defamed by them for recognition of independence of Abkhazia and Southern Ossetia? Georgia still considers these countries to be a part of its territory. We are in a difficult position, but for the sake of the “Russian world,” culture and language, we simply cannot accept a situation and remain indifferent to the fact that our compatriots on the territory of Ukraine are killed, displaced and forbidden to speak Russian.
It is a top of all these dissatisfactions, which appeared during our newest history when somebody was trying to build on a global unipolar world in contrast to multipolar world with a leading role of the UN, which was formed after WWII. And for these powers only a mere vision of Ukraine joining a Customs Union was a nightmare.
Remember the book published in 1997 “The Big Chessboard” by [Zbignew] Brzezinsky? It describes what now is happening now: the building of a new world order with the leading role of USA, against Russia. Russia without Ukraine is not a superstate. The forepost of new world order is Ukraine. Same situation we see now. The Customs Union would undermine Brzezinsky’s unipolar doctrine. The West is afraid of Ukraine’s membership in the Customs Union or any strategic union with Russia because it undermines them.
That is why since November last year, dozens of western high-ranking politicians are flooding Kyiv as if from cornucopia, and trampled all norms of international laws and practices and call to upstage a legitimate government. And then the bandit masses of protesters are uncontrolled by the leaders of the opposition. And there was bloodshed. That is why we have to protect the compatriots in Crimea and Black Sea fleet. And I am sure and you have to understand that it is a geopolitical struggle. The destiny of the unipolar world and the Russian world is at stake. And we, like the 28 Panfilov fighters near Moscow, cannot retreat. Today we cannot give up our people in Ukraine.
German Colleague I’d like to ask you a question for Germans. How will the events in Crimea affect the development of the EU?
Russian Politician You know, it s difficult to predict, with all those aggressive tensions prevailing now in Kyiv. But, let us begin with the fact that we do not need a war with our nation-brother. There will be no war. But we never give up. And we are united it this with the biggest word states, who protect their compatriots. Like Germany. For example, Goethe Institute which unites Germans all over the world. And if there is a threat to Germany or German language I am sure that Germany would protect its people. We have to understand that.
Our Western, as I call them, strategic friends try to separate Russia and Ukraine into different civilisational dimensions, trampling cruelly over Russian language and important international conventions including the UN Convention on Human Rights, the European Charter for Minority Languages.
I am sure that common sense would prevail. Our actions are recognised by many European intellectuals in many countries. It will be hard for us to communicate with many international parliamentary organisations. But we have to stand firm to protect our people and not allow the establishment of the unipolar world order. And I think lots of people in the whole world would support us.
German Colleague Tomorrow we would see the results of the referendum. But I am not sure that Crimean Tatars and Ukrainians will acknowledge it.
Russian Politician Let us wait for the results of referendum. I am sure that the Crimean Tatars and Ukrainians will express their position. In the future Crimea, the language of Russians Crimean tatars and Ukrainians should have the same rights. Future Crimea will be an example of peaceful cohabitation of all nations, all languages and all confessions. And Crimea will be an example for everyone.
German Colleague How will it manage?
Russian Politician I think that Crimeans can do it.
German Colleague Will Russia help them?
Russian Politician In case Crimeans call for it, Russia will help. Furthermore, by that time Crimea will be an autonomous republic within Russia.
German Colleague Aren’t you afraid of some…
Russian Politician No, we are not afraid of international conflicts in Crimea, and we are sure they will not happen.
German Colleague Thank you.
Interview held and translated by Ondrasz Fyoldas from http://index.hu/