Sophie Wilmès: Diplomatic channels re-activated in search for ceasefire

Sophie Wilmès: Diplomatic channels re-activated in search for ceasefire
Foreign Minister and NATO hopeful Sophie Wilmès told a TV audience diplomatic channels were pursuing 'interesting' Russian ideas towqards a possible 'creasefire'- Credit Sudpresse

Belgian Foreign Minister Sophie Wilmès said on Sunday that diplomatic channels are being "re-activated" amid "interesting" Russian demands that the West could work with towards a "ceasefire".

The former Belgian prime minister, tipped as a leading candidate for the post of NATO Secretary-General, used an interview with RTL broadcasters to claim a "shared will" for dialogue.

"Diplomatic channels are being re-activated," she was quoted as saying after UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson termed the crisis over Russian military movements around Ukraine the worst Europe has seen since the end of World War II in 1945.

'Diplomacy must prevail'

With the West facing a "Russia which is preparing to invade", Wilmès insisted that "diplomacy must prevail."

After a weekend international security conference in Munich, Germany, she spoke of channels of diplomacy that again are open and underlined that there is a "shared will" to use these "to work as quickly as possible towards a ceasefire".

She added that the possibility of Belgium – a NATO member – deploying troops is "to be determined according to the evolution of the situation."

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Some Russian demands are "red lines for NATO Allies," she said, but others are "interesting and must be considered by both parties."

Wilmès meanwhile added that media speculation about her NATO candidacy stemmed from "rumours", underlining that "the question doesn't even arise, I remain fully engaged in the service of Belgian (interests)."

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