German foreign minister worries Russia may open "Pandora's box"

by Reuters
Sunday, 23 March 2014 15:32 GMT

BERLIN, March 23 (Reuters) - Germany's foreign minister said after visiting Ukraine this weekend that he fears Russia may have opened "Pandora's Box" with its attempt to redraw national borders in Europe.

"We can't overlook the fact that Russia, with its action in Crimea, is flouting the central foundations of the peaceful order in Europe," Germany's Frank-Walter Steinmeier told the Welt am Sonntag newspaper in an interview published on Sunday.

"I'm very worried the unlawful attempt to alter recognised borders in our European neighbourhood, 25 years after the end of the Cold War, will open Pandora's Box," he said.

Steinmeier said his impression from visiting Kiev and the city of Donetsk in eastern Ukraine on Saturday was that the situation was "anything but stable".

A planned monitoring mission by the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) could help avoid an escalation of the stand-off, he said. (Reporting by Stephen Brown; Editing by Sonya Hepinstall)

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