August 1st, 2014
06:10 PM ET

Sikorski: New Europe sanctions 'will get President Putin's attention'

Fareed speaks with Polish Foreign Minister Radek Sikorski about the recent downing of Flight MH17 in Ukraine and the European Union’s response. Watch the full interview on "Fareed Zakaria GPS," this Sunday at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. ET on CNN.

Do you feel that there are any signs in the past that even the threat of these sanctions have had the effect presumably that you want, which is that Russia should stop supplying arms and people in eastern Ukraine? My sense is, if anything, is that in the last week or two, those activities have sort of stepped up and the Russians themselves appear to be firing missiles at Ukrainian government planes.

These sanctions, I think, will get President Putin's attention and will show that, despite what he has apparently thought, the West, as a moral community, exists. And it can be united when we see the fundamental norms of international relations are undermined. Hitherto, I think Russian authorities assumed they could always play us off one against the other, and that we are incapable of joint action. This is the first indication that we are.

Do you think it was the airliner changed things? Because my understanding, reports from what was happening within the European Union, was there was significant dissension. I mean, when people would talk about sanctions, non-British countries would argue for financial sanctions, which of course hurt over in London. Britain would argue for the kind of sanctions that would hurt France or Germany. And as a result, there was a standoff. Did the airliner break that logjam?

The airliner and the treatment of the bodies of the victims and the fact that they came from a number of EU countries definitely mobilized politicians in Europe. And crucial was the package put together by the European Commission, which spreads the pain of sanctions on our side fairly. Of course, I expect the Russian side to respond with counter-sanctions, and they'll probably try to divide us again.

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Topics: Europe • GPS Show • Russia • Ukraine

soundoff (11 Responses)
  1. derss

    "Sikorski: New Europe sanctions 'will get President Putin's attention'" - OH YES, THEY DID.

    This is why Poland now pays for trying to be most slavish lackey to USA's insane necons that arranged whole Ukraine crisis into attempt to annex whole Ukraine into NATO against will of majority of people (as per latest reliable polls).

    No they have puppet regime in Ukraine, headed by criminal corrupt oligarch, USA's "insider" (see Wikileaks) Poroshenko, that mass murders civilians in East Ukraine. USA also finance and supply weapons to Israel, which is mass murdering civilians in Gaza.


    August 2, 2014 at 2:59 am |
    • mongol1

      Rather than be a "most slavish lackey to USA", Poland is concerned, rightfully so, that Adolph Putin and his fascist/nationalistic agenda is going to invade, like the Russnazis did to the Ukraine. Did you Russnazis forget that on 1 December, 1991 90% of the Ukrainian people voted to be rid of Russian domination and that you are signators to the Budapest Memorandums guaranteeing Ukrainian borders and sovereignty?

      Since by breaking that memorandum it could be implied that Russia has declared war upon all of Europe and the US. I as an American support the deployment of a US and a UK Division to Poland for "training purposes", and the shipment of the necessary armaments for Poland to defend itself. As part of the training I would support joint exercises with Ukrainian troops, including forward deployment of arms caches in case Adolph P. gets hungry for more of Ukraine/Europe.

      I think they should be given back some nuclear weapons and delivery systems, seeing as how Russia violated the Budapest Memorandums.

      August 2, 2014 at 4:19 pm |
      • RPrior

        Would tend to agree with your comment about Adolph P. Adolph H also used State controlled information to spread misinformation amongst his people as well as bare faced lies to the world.

        August 3, 2014 at 3:19 pm |
    • Joey Isotta-Fraschini©

      @ dress,
      Here love: take your sanctions out personally, on me, by not sending me any more CARE packages at my New York address.
      Thank you for your charity in the past.

      August 2, 2014 at 8:27 pm |
  2. chri§§y

    How nice of you to deflect the blame @ derss!

    August 2, 2014 at 11:14 am |
  3. No sanctions - wright way ...

    ... sanctions – wrong way. President Putin and Russia have great business stakes and interests in Europe, in energy, banks, logistics, transportation, tourism, hotels, various industries. While on the other hand, USA does not have a single bank in Europe. Meaning that Russia is strong – USA weak. Sanctions on Russia are gonna backfire on USA – meaning more unemployment.

    August 3, 2014 at 12:01 pm |
  4. rkka

    Radek is wrong. Putin has long since ceased caring what he thinks, because Radek thinks the Russia-West relationship of the 1990s, when Russia was bankrupt, indebted, and dying off at the rate of a million a year, was the ideal. And you know, no one in the West was particularly upset that deaths in Russia were exceeding births by about a million a year back then. Fact is, the West cared not how, or even whether, Russians lived only that the Russian government submitted, and Yeltsin did so with gratifying frequency.

    Got news for Radek. and Zakaria, for that matter.

    Russia is no longer bankrupt and dying, so that "ideal' relationship is no longer on the table.

    Russia now has to be negotiated with, not dictated to.

    Deal with it.

    August 3, 2014 at 1:53 pm |
  5. tom

    Looking at the pages of there is a report on an effect of sanctions on everyday life of Russians on vacations at Crimea. Apparently number of travel agencies went bankrupt and airplanes leased to airlines were withdrawn stranding hundreds of vacationers in Crimea.

    August 4, 2014 at 6:10 am |
    • Son of Gulag survivor

      If you believe Wyborcza, you have no conscious. Let,s say it is like to believe pathological liar R. Sikorski in his interview with Zaccaria.

      August 7, 2014 at 5:14 pm |
  6. j. von hettlingen

    Radek Sikorski would make himself a good replacement for Catherine Ashton, EU chief for foreign policies, who has to step down soon. Instead we might have Italy's foreign minister, Federica Mogherini to be EU's top diplomat. She is said to be inexperienced and Putin-friendly.

    August 11, 2014 at 9:18 am |
  7. MBT Chaussures Hommes

    Sikorski: New Europe sanctions 'will get President Putin's attention' – Global Public Square – Blogs
    MBT Chaussures Hommes

    April 7, 2019 at 9:10 pm |

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