Cover Osteuropa 10-12/2021

In Osteuropa, 10-12/2021

Russia’s Hostage
Military Encirclement of Ukraine and International Law

Otto Luchterhandt

Deutsche Fassung


Russia has concentrated over 130,000 soldiers around Ukraine. They are equipped with the most modern materiel equipment. This is an integrated inva-sion army ready for war. Since the end of the Second World War, such a de-ployment has been unprecedented in Europe. The military encirclement of Ukraine presents a threat of force within the meaning of Article 2(4) of the UN Charter and with that a serious breach of international law. The purpose of threatening violence is to induce the United States and NATO to conclude trea-ties that would allow Russia to assert its power and security interests in the post-Soviet space. By threatening to wage war against Ukraine if the West does not conclude the proposed treaties, Russia has taken Ukraine hostage. At the same time, the military encirclement is striving to achieve Moscow’s hegemony over Kyiv as an intermediate step towards restoring a Russian empire.

(Osteuropa, 10-12/2021, pp. 5–34)