Kyiv should rebuild its nuclear arsenal, says former minister


Western countries that supported Ukraine’s 1994 nuclear disarmament agreement should provide more effective help against Russia, or Kyiv will re-start building up a nuclear arsenal, said Vladimir Ogryzko, a former Ukrainian foreign minister.

The only measure that could ensure Ukraine’s security is to abandon the Treaty of Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (TNPNW), said Ogryzko, who served as foreign minister in the government of Yulia Tymoshenko in 2007-2009.

Ukraine renounced its nuclear arsenal in 1994, when it signed the Treaty for the Nonproliferation of Nuclear Weapons (TNPNW) with Russia, the USA and the UK, relinquishing weapons inherited from the former USSR.

Through the so-called Budapest Memorandum, these countries, which later included China and France, gave national security assurances to Ukraine, and also Belarus and Kazakhstan, where Soviet weapons were stationed. The Joint Declaration by the Russian Federation and the United States of America of 4 December 2009 confirmed their commitment.

As a result, between 1994 and 1996, Ukraine gave up the world’s third largest nuclear arsenal in return for those “security assurances”.

According to the Budapest memorandum, the Russian Federation, Great Britain and the United States reaffirmed their commitment to respect Ukraine's independence and sovereignty within its existing borders.

But the Budapest Memorandum has proved of little use in the context of the ongoing crisis in Crimea. Russia has been unimpressed by warnings that its actions in Crimea violate this international treaty.

Ogryzko said that if the West doesn’t get serious about helping Ukraine following the Crimea annexation, he would advise the country’s leadership to exit the TNPNW and start the production of nuclear weapons.

The former foreign minister said this would be “the only measure which could secure [Ukraine’s] security”.

“This is not a joke, this is a serious thing… And if we keep acting as we did in the previous few weeks, the next landing of Russian paratroopers will be in Kyiv,” Ogryzko said.

It can be assumed that Ukraine has the know-how for building nuclear weapons, Ukrainian experts told EurActiv, But this is a long process, that takes time and money. During the Cold War, nuclear weapons served as a deterrent for conventional military attacks between Western nations, the Soviet Union and the Warsaw Pact countries.

  • 17 March: EU ministers meet in Brussels to decide sanctions on Russia;
  • 20-21 March: EU leaders hold regular Spring Summit in Brussels, Ukraine may sign political chapters of EU Association Agreement. 
  • 20 March: Russian parliament expected to ratify Crimea’s annexation.
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Vincente's picture

Is this trying to trigger WW3 by blackmailing the EU?

Very intelligent! Well, if you are a lunatic, if you live in the Ukraine and have done nothing in your life whatsoever. Why not join Vladimir Ogryzko's party? There might be room for you!

Gerry's picture

And how many people thought these 'freedom fighters' wanted to establish a democracy? If this is the way they want to go then please, let the Russians invade them now!

exquisiteur's picture

Another type of ukrainian politician gang in Kiev want to become oligarchs (with the blessing of the EU?.

So blackmail is the best way to obtain comfortable lifes and despise the common people of Ukrainia

Give me money or I 'll kill you. This is democracy catered by Kiev? Will EU taxpayer have to be contributing to this gang survival.?

Why the EU would not set up a monitoring of this gang and how fast they are to become very rich in a short time ?

an european's picture

Well MR Former your question
"Kyiv should rebuild its nuclear arsenal, says former minister"

Chernobyl xploded in 1986 ! Don't think it's a good idea !
We know already the test rudness of Sowjet feelings which strenghtens radioaktivity outside!
No nuclear arsenic anymore!
You've fight for an EU trade but now we say NO to nuke build up!

You cannot have all!