The Normandy process began to falter in the fall of 2015, immediately after Russia carried out a large-scale military intervention in Syria.
“It became clear – at least for me personally – that the Normandy process began to stall, in the autumn of 2015, right after Russia carried out a large-scale military intervention in Syria. It was then that Lavrov, right at the “Norman table” of talks, boasted that he had just received a call from US Secretary of State Kerry saying that Russia was “back in the game.” It is from the moment when Russia launched the Syrian military campaign that the great Russian-American strategic bargain began” – the ambassador said.
Melnyk believes that since then, all subsequent events in the “Normandy” format have become increasingly formal.
“The feeling that Russia is really interested in implementing the Minsk agreements has disappeared. I don’t think that the mediators in the “Quartet of Normandy” themselves did not notice that all the positive dynamics changed at one point. I well remember all these numerous meetings and talks in Berlin during 2015, almost every two weeks, the atmosphere that prevailed when Russia was literally trapped in a corner, forced to maneuver, offer something, negotiate. Really full-fledged negotiations were going on. After the invasion of Syria, the process itself formally remained, but the moment was lost” – he said.
Earlier, Volodymyr Zelenskyy said at a meeting with advisers to the leaders of France and Germany that it was time to agree on an end to the conflict.