Full text of the joint interview of President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy to Agence France-Presse, Reuters and Associated Press. The conversation took place on June 14.
- Good afternoon, Volodymyr Oleksandrovych. The first question from the Associated Press. Biden says three words before his meeting with Putin: "normalization, stabilization and predictability". Please tell your expectations from the Biden - Putin meeting? Maybe three words or some concerns?
- These words of the President of the United States are clear to me. Because he does not want to be very predictable before meeting with the President of the Russian Federation. Such restrained behavior of both the US leader and the Russian leader suggests that they are meeting to try to convey something to each other. We have seen many meetings of many US Presidents with the only President of the Russian Federation in many years. It seems to me that they have a different view of life in general and of Ukraine, a different view of what is happening in the world. I don't remember a very warm relationship between these two geopolitical whales.
Do we as a state expect any results? I think the whole world expects that. I say this openly and I am glad, because when people sit down and talk, even if they come out without results, it is already the result of their meeting.
At the same time, there is the NATO summit, Nord Stream, its completion, and the rhetoric that comes from European countries and, unfortunately, from the United States. And here I would like a more stable, clear position for us. We, Ukraine, would like a clearer position. That is why what we see, what we hear is a diplomatic preparation for this meeting. The biggest problem for me is where are the specifics? In all this case - I apologize, maybe you expected a different answer - I put Nord Stream, the Biden - Putin summit, the NATO summit on the same level, although these are different things in terms of their significance. And I think that there is obviously a lack of specifics in this direction.
As for the position of the West towards Russia and, for example, Russia towards the United States, regarding their summit, I do not see that everyone wants to reach a definite decision. That's what I mean when I talk about specifics.
- Your concerns?
- Concern number one - there will be no specifics. And the situation in Ukraine very much depends on it. Why? I am grateful to all our partners - European countries, the United States, they really help. I spoke with Prime Minister Johnson this morning, he is a very cool man. And he openly supports us. He asks: "What else can I do?". I tell him about specific things and I'm sure he will convey something just like other leaders. However, I feel that everyone is afraid of solving the most difficult issues. I have always linked the final solution to the problems at the level of who is responsible and when. It seems to me that there will be no this specificity. These are my concerns.
At the same time, I understand that at the NATO summit, countries will support us. Us, our aspiration for membership, for the MAP, as well as our Georgian colleagues. I am grateful to them. But it's a "yes, yes, but a little bit no".
- Speaking of concerns, are you worried that, for example, Putin and Biden may agree on Ukraine without Ukraine? Maybe you think your meeting with Biden was necessary before his meeting with Putin?
- As for the classic phrase "Do not decide for Ukraine without Ukraine" - I think it is very fair. But it doesn't work to its full extent. No matter how hard officials in Ukraine, the EU, these or those heads of state try. An urgent issue for Donbas - they will talk about it. I think there is nothing terrible in this. But it is impossible to decide for Ukraine. I'm sure it's unreal. But it is clear that they will speak without us. We are not invited to this meeting, so, I believe, there will be no specific result. Frankly speaking, no one knows Russians better than Ukrainians. Nobody knows Ukraine better than Russians, so we clearly understand that there will be no agreement on Ukraine without Ukraine between Russia and the United States.
You asked if it would be better for us, Ukraine, to be the first (to meet with President Biden - ed.)? Yes. But we recently had a phone conversation with the President of the United States. It was not about geopolitics in general - it was about the specifics. With your permission, it will stay private. I think it was the right thing to have such a conversation. But it's worse than a meeting. The US President would be more powerful in terms of having and understanding the real information, not just the one from the intelligence report. I also receive a lot of intelligence reports on the situation in the world and in Russia, but I believe that this is not 100% in line with reality. The same is about Ukraine. Therefore, if people are not here, they cannot fully understand what is happening here. By the way, I always invite Western leaders - please come and let’s visit Donbas together. They come (to the east of Ukraine - ed.) and ask: seriously? That is, it indicates that the information policy does not coincide with reality. Therefore, our meeting before the summit of the presidents of the Russian Federation and the United States would be preferable. That would be a plus for the position of the President of the United States.
We have all recently heard what the President of the Russian Federation said. If possible, I will switch to Russian. “I stand for the meeting with Ukraine, but we must understand the agenda. What to talk about? We have bilateral issues and so on". I believe that this is a signal to people in Russia or the Western world - I’m for the meeting. But you and I understand - to be honest, what kind of agenda? Come out to the streets in Ukraine, I think in Russia as well, and everyone knows exactly what is happening. Everyone clearly understands that there is a war, it is in Donbas. Everyone understands who occupied Crimea, everyone understands who is helping the separatists.
Any person, whatever his position is, among the Russian people will tell you: when will we finally stop fighting? We had a (common - ed.) history, our "grandfathers fought". These are not trivial things, they are straightforward and understandable things. Everyone knows what the agenda is.
The Russian side may have a million different questions regarding bilateral relations. And we can have a million questions. But when people want to end the war, to normalize relations, they say: Forget the agenda, let's meet, come on, let's go. And when people do not want this, but cannot say directly (I don’t know what is the reason for that), they begin to say: we need an agenda, “bilateral relations”. We know how we (Ukrainian and Russians - ed.) used to visit each other and how this is not happening now. We know what our trade turnover was, but now it has decreased several times. We know who is being killed in the east, we know whose flags are hoisted in Crimea. What agenda are you talking about?
- Do you think President Putin does not want to meet with you and makes up a reason to avoid that?
- President Putin said he was ready for the meeting, and I believe that the meeting will take place. Today, I don't know the reasons, they are delaying it. But delaying does not solve the problem. They raise issues of the Russian language, the church, and so on. The media even discuss my stature - it is very "important" in bilateral relations when there is a war… I have a very open position here: if you want respect for the Russian language - respect the Ukrainian language. We want respect for schools.
They say we closed some schools, that it is forbidden to speak Russian in Ukraine. I often speak Russian on purpose to show that our state language is Ukrainian, but people speak as they want. It is not prohibited. By the way, I have not heard the President of Russia speak Ukrainian. Although, it seems to me, it is also not prohibited. They ask me: how to solve the problem with schools, with languages? I say - you just need to respect each other, and everything will be fine. We have many different private schools - English, they want (to open - ed.) Hungarian. Private - you’re welcome. If you want the state support - we support the Ukrainian school, this is logical. If you want a Russian school, let's open a Ukrainian school in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Tyumen, where many Ukrainians live. This is called respect.
But what should happen first when we talk about respect? I have two children. Let's say a baby, a small child is still in a "diaper". Why? Because the baby, unfortunately, does not understand that when, sorry, you want to relieve oneself, you should first take off your pants. Not the other way around. But Russia and Ukraine are adults. We understand what to do and in what order. So when they talk about church or language, I think: we have a war. Let's decide what comes first? There are specifics: let's end the war, we want to normalize relations. Enough! Generations (will suffer - ed.). Whether they want to or not, it will come after. That's what we're talking about.
- During your conversation with Biden, did you receive any guarantees from him? Do you think that Putin's meeting with Biden can somehow speed up your meeting with Putin?
- I believe our meeting with the President of Russia is inevitable. But if he does not want to end anything, there will be no meeting. There are no other reasons, I think. Therefore, we will hope that in the near future we will receive dates, agenda and deadlines, which is important. Can a meeting with the President of the United States speed up our meeting? The meeting takes place when both parties are interested in it. Therefore, I believe that the meeting of the presidents cannot speed up my meeting with Putin. As for my meeting with the President of the United States, I received a very concrete invitation. There is no date yet, but at the end of July we will have a meeting, an official visit to the United States.
- What about the guarantees you received? Did Biden give you guarantees?
- Joe Biden is the President of the United States, he gives guarantees only to his country and his people. As for understanding, support - yes. He said: I will never trade Ukraine, the interests of Ukraine. I am interested in defending democratic aspirations and democracy in Ukraine, Ukrainian interests in a conversation with the President of the Russian Federation. We agreed that in any case we will receive information after the summit on how the meeting took place. I'm interested in that. Basically, I am interested in the positive outcome of their meeting. There is a little skepticism - that's true. As for the guarantees of protection of our sovereignty and territorial integrity, we received such guarantees verbally not only from the President of the United States, but also from the leaders of the G7 and the Alliance (NATO - ed.).
- Was it about getting weapons from the United States? Because we have Javelins, what's next?
- We have a great conversation about the bilateral defense agreement between our countries. So far this is a conversation. I'm pretty sure it will be more than a conversation. We spoke about the increase in quality technical and military assistance, the allocation of funds, and the fact that we have lost many years in relation to the security situation in the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov. I believe that this is a challenge for Ukraine. I say this openly, sometimes the country's military leadership takes offence at me, but they understand that this is the case. Our fleet is weak. I think it must be powerful. And there are some important ideas for this. There is important support from the UK.
We are now talking about appropriate support from the United States and the countries of the Black Sea coast. My desire is to build a powerful Ukrainian fleet.
- What are your expectations from the meeting with Biden? You said about military aid, and what else can Ukraine get?
- I really want specifics for Ukraine from the President of the United States. If we are talking about the NATO MAP, I would very much like to get the specifics about whether it is “yes” or “no”. I understand that this must be a concerted position of the Allies. However, we must get clear dates and the probability of this for Ukraine.
- Are you talking about NATO or the MAP?
- First of all about the MAP. Because without the MAP it is impossible to complete this path. Therefore, we are talking primarily about the MAP - specifics. The same goes for the navy, military support. While we are not in NATO, we want to receive this powerful support. Third, I spoke with the President of the United States about the International Monetary Fund, deepening our relationship in terms of what everyone needs to understand and be more flexible. Understand that we have a war and we are defending democracy in Europe, we are defending our country. That's why you can't just talk to us about reforms, because it all takes time, stability, money. Therefore, if the United States supports us, it must do so economically as well. It's not that we, as beggars, want to take every penny from the United States and do something for that. This is the wrong approach. We make reforms for ourselves - one way or another. When it is needed and when it is appropriate.
And when it comes to economic specifics, the United States has the opportunity to support Ukraine economically. It's not just about money, it's about investment, it's about starting a business. There is a list of these enterprises, there is our desire, there are clear directions, industries. If the United States enters the Ukrainian market, it is an increase in the number of jobs, an increase in money in the Ukrainian economy. I'm talking about such a policy.
And the same goes for energy security for Ukraine. If Russia has a common economic process with some European countries, for us Nord Stream 2 is a weapon against Ukraine. Some European leaders said that Ukraine simply needed guarantees. It's not just about guarantees. For us, it's not about the economy, it is ridiculous. This is definitely a political weapon, and so far Russia is beating everyone in the direction of Nord Stream 2. We need to get security guarantees, I think that's fair. And the most important thing in security guarantees is the return of our territories. If there is a step in support of such a decision, first of all from Russia and from European countries that are interested in Nord Stream 2, and we have, in addition to geopolitical, energy and security guarantees, then yes - I understand. And if this is not the case, then they just hang it up (the situation - ed.) and say: let's give you money. Money does not solve anything. When there was an annexation of Crimea, and then the war in the east of Ukraine began, everyone in the Normandy format began to speak: let's draft a "Minsk", ways and steps how to stop the war - they didn't even say "war", they said “the conflict in the east of Ukraine”, forgetting about Crimea. And now, when there will be Nord Stream 2, it will be possible to block both the situation with gas supplies to Ukraine and transit through Ukraine in one way or another, everyone will talk about this issue and forget about Donbas. Or they will push us to resolve this issue through dialogue, as our Russian colleagues say, with "representatives of Donbas" - "LPR", "DPR". Talk to them, it's them, we have nothing to do with this. In other words, they are already rhetorically deviating from the fact that they are a party and a subject of this war, a party to the conflict.
People, some countries will start to get used to it, as to the situation with Crimea. Crimea is the same story: when will it be returned? "It will never be returned". "Maybe it will be returned". "But let's address the issue in the east". Then there will be "Nord Stream 2", and everyone will say: this is gas, an energy problem, there is nothing to ensure heating for people with, it is cold in winter, and let’s discuss Donbas later... I understand this tactic. That's why Nord Stream 2 is a weapon for me, and I say that openly.
- Question about Nord Stream 2. What compensation does Kyiv want for Nord Stream 2?
- The end of war, peace and stability throughout independent Ukraine. And when we say "stability", it is geopolitical stability, a permanent ceasefire, control over our territories, energy security. It's all about justice. And it's not about Nord Stream 2. It should unconditionally be so. That is why we will fight, in spite of everything, for our statehood and against Nord Stream 2, whether our European partners like it or not.
- Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Dmytro Kuleba says that Ukraine agrees to start talks on compensation due to the launch of Nord Stream 2. What is it about?
- I think that Mr. Kuleba meant exactly what I just said. I do not see that we have an uncoordinated position in this direction.
- But do you expect that, perhaps, the West will somehow put pressure on Russia to return Donbas and Crimea after all?
- Of course, we all understand that we can't solve all the cases I talked about due to one issue. This is a systemic matter.
- What can Ukraine put pressure on to make the West do something?
- First of all, Western countries must realize that the war in Ukraine, on the border or in the temporarily occupied territories is the first signal of where it may be tomorrow and on whose border. This is the war in Europe, but it is Ukrainians who are being killed. And this is unfair. I'm not saying that other people, from European countries or the United States, must go and die, too. But we must speak openly about it: Ukrainians, different people, of different nationalities - citizens of Ukraine are being killed. They perish for all the principles preached and upheld by the leaders of both NATO and the European Union. But we have been defending these principles for many years by concrete steps, not only in words.
Life is more than 10, 20, 30 years. Today there are these empires, and tomorrow there will be different ones. There are historical examples. Many former empires are now small states, democracies. Therefore, everyone must understand that another country may be in our place. And if Ukraine solves this global problem on its own, we will have no choice but to become a very strong army, the most powerful in Europe in terms of technology and troops. And for that we will simply spend everything we have: a lot of human potential, a lot of talented people. Instead of becoming scientists, technologically developing their country, people will think about how to protect their family, their home. There is nothing good in war.
- You said you would like to see a more stable position of the West, the United States in support of Ukraine. It’s not clear with the accession to NATO, Nord Stream 2 is being completed...
- Today Ukraine is closer to receiving the NATO Membership Action Plan than ever before. And I'm not talking about it myself, I'm just stating the facts.
- But still, don't you have a feeling of "betrayal"? Everyone is tired of the war, of Ukrainian problems, everyone wants business as usual.
- It has been like that for the last four or five years. I believe that in the last year the West has strengthened its position in support of Ukraine a bit. But I agree, and this is not even "tiredness", it’s just the fact that everyone has their own interests. When there is a war in Ukraine, everyone supports, everyone (says - ed.) about civilization, about democracy. But as long as the war is not in my country, I can somehow live with it…
Or Ukraine has been talking about its aspiration for the EU for so many years, and the European Union itself, I think, does not know how to close itself so as not to respond directly to Ukraine. Not all countries, we have many friends. The Baltic states and Poland openly say that they are ready to support our accession to the EU even tomorrow.
I understand that the Russian Federation is a big market. We lost it because of the war, and Russia lost our market. And many countries - I do not see that they have lost a lot. Yes, someone has imposed sanctions, someone is already tired of sanctions, someone is under a lot of pressure from domestic business. Everything is clear, the world is cynical, it's all about money. First money - then life.
- Why is Ukraine now closer to the MAP than before?
- We have certain information that in the coming years we can receive the MAP. In particular, this is what our diplomats say. But you see how everything can turn out in one second, as with Nord Stream 2. Everyone imposed sanctions, but the construction continued little by little.
Different countries have walked their path to NATO. I believe that in our case it is a matter of principle. But the positions of the Allies need to be coordinated. The issue is not in Ukraine. Unfortunately, we have a "living" war. This is a proof of whether we are ready to join, a confirmation of certain technical categories, whether our boys and girls are ready as professionals, whether we are members of certain NATO missions.
We prove every day that we are ready to be in the Alliance more than most countries in the European Union. Unfortunately, the reason for this is that we have been at war for seven years.
Therefore, it depends on the Allies. There is another factor, perhaps the most important, - the desire of Ukrainians. Because Ukrainians will have to live with it, and they live with it today. And when the war broke out in the east, we all saw the percentage of Ukrainians who wanted to join NATO rise. Because for people it is security, it is protection for their children. And when you’ve been beating your head against the wall for seven years and get the answer that “we support the desire”… When you only support the desire, you can get reluctance in a few years. People will stop believing. Because help is needed when there is a war.
- What do you think was the reason for the aggravation on the borders with Russia this year?
- The reasons are different. In particular, the emergence of a new President in the United States and a new administration. The pressure increased. A negotiating position was being prepared. With all due respect to the independence of our country, but there was an external reason - the relationship between Russia and the United States. There was a demonstrative buildup and withdrawal of troops. And there is a probability of escalation. Has it grown? Of course. Because when you have a large number of troops along the borders or the contact line, any provocation can end in conflict.
Remember when we withdrew (troops - ed.) in Zolote, etc. People said: this is some kind of treason. Now we see that in the areas where the troops were withdrawn, in principle, there are no gunshots. We understood that.
The same is with this situation. In any case, if the number of troops near your borders increases significantly, it could end in a serious conflict, a serious war, a very serious provocation.
Going back to Russia, they say, “What are we here for? You talk to these comrades from "DPR/LPR". Then the question is: West-2021 (joint military exercises of Russia and Belarus - ed.), the exercises that you conduct - it is not "DPR/LPR", not ORDLO, it's you (Russia - ed.). Then tell me, why - according to the information we receive - options of possible seizure of Kyiv, Odesa, Kharkiv are worked out there? I just wonder how they can say one thing and do another one.
- Now the situation is more or less calm, as we see from here. Do you expect any escalation in the near future? And when?
- Unfortunately, we must expect complications and be prepared for them every day. But I don't think it will happen. Provocations are possible, in particular, in mid-September, when there will be West 2021.
And yet I believe that the Russian Federation is not interested in a full-scale war.
- How would you comment on Putin's last interview about the "Russian world"?
- Ask specifically.
- He again, as in 2014, said that Ukraine is part of the "Russian world". You say that there will be no escalation…
- I did not say that there will be no escalation. I said that there is a probability of escalation every day. I believe that there will be no full-scale war. I really believe in this, because I think that it is World War III. I'm sure of it, because we will not give up, we will go to the end. Russia also understands this.
As for the "Russian world" - what exactly? ..
- He again in the same context as in 2014…
- It is ridiculous when they give an example of some Nazi sentiments. I perceive it as a Comedy Club when they talk about it. This whole "Jewish fascist" story is a bit like Quentin Tarantino, this stunning movie "Inglourious Basterds," remember? Here's a little phantasmagoria. And I do not understand how people in Russia believe in it at all. They do know us well! We have been together for so many years, one cinematography, one culture, one theater, one literature. Incredible Ukrainian literature that was popular there. Russian literature, which is popular in Ukraine. I can't understand at all how he can speak about some kind of "fascism"! I can't take it seriously. In general, there is a desire to respond in a manly way to the media that promote this. Because what other arguments do you need? How can you say that? How can you say that to me?
My family was executed by the Nazis during the 100% occupation of Ukraine. One cannot say the same about Russia. Of course, Russia was at war. Of course, it was the army of the Soviet Union. There was the country - the Soviet Union. Everyone was at war, but some parts were completely occupied. We were killed, shot, burned… Babyn Yar - it was here. I am simply surprised, firstly, by the superficial knowledge of some Russian media, and secondly, by the superficial knowledge of the entourage or assistants of the first person. How do they even prepare this for him? Ridiculous. People say it, propagandize it. It seems that they were at war with Nazism, and we were Nazis… Who are we anyway? This is the main split - the information war, the information wiping of their feet on our country. Taking away all the victories Ukraine had. Taking away culture, faith, literature, victory over Nazism is political kleptomania, there is no other definition.
- President Biden answered in the affirmative to the question of whether he considers Putin a murderer. Do you consider Putin a murderer?
- I was once asked this question. I said it was very incorrect. Because there are questions from the answers to which people may die, an escalation may begin. You can now deprive (us - ed.) of at least a small chance to resolve the situation. That's why I don't think you can ask such questions or answer them, even when you really want to. You can say anything on the street, at home, to anyone. But you are not God, you did not give a person life and you have no right to do something that can take it away.
- The IMF, judging by what they say, is not very happy with the course of reforms in Ukraine. Do you think Ukraine can get the next tranche? If so, when? And if not, how will Ukraine live on?
- Recently, by the way, I heard a public appeal from the IMF, which is satisfied with the course of reforms in Ukraine. Different media provide different information. And yet. Honestly, the most important thing for me is whether we are satisfied. There are "beacons" that the IMF expects from Ukraine, including judicial reform, and many other issues. Today, the tranche is tied to such "beacons". I will repeat once again: I think it is unfair when we have a war, when we are fighting the oligarchs, when we are fighting corruption and we are really doing it. However, this is their right.
- Whose side is unfair?
- The IMF - it is unfair to tie these or those "beacons" to certain tranches. Because reforms are for us. You can't trade reforms for money. That's what we're talking about.
"Beacons" on judicial reform - they are about the High Council of Justice, HQCJ and NABU. These are the bills that are currently envisaged by the IMF. All three were approved in the first reading. I expect further steps from the Verkhovna Rada. Everything is agreed. But there may be surprises - this is what happens in our parliament. As was the case with the NACP: I had to veto it (the law - ed.), because someone added something. Unfortunately, deputies of many parties feel no responsibility. I don't even know why they do it - just, sorry, to the detriment of the country. As they say "Baba Yaga is against". This complicates the situation. However, all other things in terms of budget transparency, its predictability - the government is doing all this today.
But, I think, it is impossible to compare the strategy and tactics of the IMF's behavior towards Ukraine with many countries. You just can't put it on a par with others. Because we have a complication, because there is a war. Because money is spent not on priorities from the point of view of the economy, but on priorities from the point of view of security. First the military, first medicine, then everything else.
Please note: Europe and the world set a priority. Vaccines are firstly provided to the European Union, the United States, Israel. We see it - the priority countries, and then everyone else. There is a priority here. That is why I believe that Ukraine is a priority. Every country, every leader, including the United States, Great Britain, Israel and other countries, asks me: how else can we help? Okay, the situation has not been agreed with NATO yet, but what can we do to help? You tell them: “We want to be among all the priority countries so that we don't secretly agree with someone about vaccines - India, Europe, something in Canada, a little bit in Lithuania. Why? Because there is a war. Because Russia offers "Sputnik". Earlier, through Medvedchuk's channels, they said: please take as much as you need. They (Russians - ed.) will not have enough for their population, but for them it is not a priority: "You take first". It is also a weapon. And do you think that no one sees or understands this? Everyone sees. Everyone understands.
- Still, let's return to the IMF. Can Ukraine get a tranche?
- It is important for us. This is important above all for our economic stability and investment climate. Because other programs and investor attitudes are always tied to the IMF program. That is, it is not just a question of money, it is more about attitude, investment climate and so on. So we will definitely do what we promised. I think there will be a tranche in autumn. The terms are dealt with by the government.
- And without this tranche…
- We will live. We have everything, seriously. We have increased customs revenues, and the tax service is working much better. We will bring all businesses from unprofitable to profitable. Today we already understand these steps. Therefore, I do not see this as a global problem. In any case, we need to learn to live independently. And it seems to me that this is right in every sense.
- Returning to international negotiations, to the position of Berlin and Paris - tell me, please, is the support for Ukraine from France and Germany sufficient?
- It will never be sufficient.
- What is your assessment of the position of these countries?
- I think that it is also difficult for them for various reasons: both economic challenges and challenges of their society as regards support for the leaders of these countries, elections and so on. There are many different things, and it is not easy for them. They supported us - here, as they say, we should be thankful for what we have. Do we want more? Yes. Can they do more? It sounds brazen, but I think so. But I just know - I'm sure of it: they themselves must realize that this is not only good for Ukraine - it is security and good for their countries.
We feel instability. We see movement, partnership, triangles. In geopolitics today, I feel - especially after the UK left the European Union - that the model is quite fragile. And Ukraine is a very powerful country in terms of strengthening both the EU and NATO. I think so. Maybe I'm wrong and think very well of us…
- It seems to me that in your words there is a certain resentment towards the West: no priority vaccine, NATO does not want you, problems with Nord Stream 2. Is that true or not? Have you changed your attitude towards the West, compared to the time two years ago when you became President?
- I think what you just said is a feeling not from my words. In general, people have this feeling. And especially people in the West. Ordinary people. Journalists. Journalists from Europe, from the United States - look at what they insist on and what they focus on. They themselves see that their countries can and must do more to strengthen world peace. And they see that they are not doing everything. They see that the priority is not always in a person's life. Therefore, they emphasize this.
That is not my impression. I see it. I feel it because we have a war. But the most important thing is that all this is felt by society and the media. They all see it. This is the moment when we can say that journalists are a real effective power on a global scale. I think they simply will not allow (Western leaders - ed.) to completely weaken their positions.