National Security Advisers Meet in Davos to Advance Blueprint for Peace in Ukraine

Davos-Klosters, Switzerland, 14 January 2024 – Top Ukrainian officials together with Switzerland’s foreign minister presented the outcomes of the 4th National Security Advisors (NSA) meeting, facilitated by the World Economic Forum and hosted by Switzerland today, where experts discussed steps needed for a lasting peace in Ukraine. Leaders from Ukraine and Switzerland shared highlights of the discussions in two press conferences.

The meeting, which included national security advisers from 83 countries and international organizations, focused on several parts of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s 10-point plan calling for an end to hostilities with Russia. This included talks on the withdrawal of Russian troops and release of all prisoners, food and energy security, nuclear safety, environmental protection and justice for crimes committed.

President Zelenskyy will address participants at the Annual Meeting on 16 January at 14.15 CET

Andriy Yermak, Head of the Office of the President of Ukraine, noted in the evening press conference the substantial number of countries now involved in the peace dialogue and said Ukraine will be holding summits with African and Latin American countries in the near future. He said that the re-establishment of an independent and peaceful Ukraine with its internationally recognized borders is important not just for the sake of upholding principles and rules.

“It’s about our fruitful cooperation in the future,” Yermak said. “We have a great country. We have a great history. And that’s why today we are talking about reconstruction, [and] talking about future cooperation. This is the Ukrainian dream – which, of course, needs to start with our victory.”

Yuliia Svyrydenko, First Deputy Prime Minister of Ukraine, highlighted that food insecurity due to the war has impacted those who can least afford it. “After the invasion, the price [of wheat] jumped to record levels, by over $400 per ton,” she said. “We need to increase the capacity of food aid to the most vulnerable consumers.”

At an earlier press conference, the Swiss Foreign Minister Ignazio Cassis, citing his country’s long tradition of promoting peace, said: “After two years of war, peace is something we urgently need. The principles [we are discussing] should form the basis for the next stages of the peace process. Every minute we wait, hundreds of civilians are killed or injured. We must put an end to this war.”

Cassis stressed that the purpose of the NSA discussions is to prepare and be ready to start a peace process with Russia when the time comes. “A peace plan must move forward even if a dialogue between Kyiv and Moscow cannot yet take place. We must prepare a broad alliance of nations to create international pressure [for a solution]. We must be ready when conditions allow,” he said.

In addition to Switzerland acting as a mediator and host of the 4th NSA meeting, Cassis said Switzerland was providing millions of Swiss francs in humanitarian aid in Ukraine until 2026.

The Forum facilitated the meeting as part of its tradition of providing a space for diplomacy and mobilizing business for peace-building and resilience efforts.

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