A 5-Point Peace Proposal Based on Immediate Ceasefire and Relief to People of Ukraine

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While the most visible devastation of the Ukraine war can be seen in the enormous sufferings of the people of Ukraine, the implications of this war turning sooner or later into a much wider war, perhaps even a nuclear war and the third world war, are simply too horrible to contemplate. Hence immediate peace is needed, creating conditions also for essential relief to reach people of Ukraine.

A 5-point proposal is therefore suggested here-

*Immediate ceasefire, on the basis of existing territorial control, should be introduced while all territorial disputes and other big differences like NATO membership of Ukraine are resolved later with the help of the UNO and some neutral countries. Any and all prisoners on both sides should be returned to each other safely, and with dignity.

*All further weapon aid and weapon exports to Ukraine should stop while peace negotiations are conducted and the funds meant for this should be added to the relief effort in Ukraine.

*All the related sanctions should be lifted, with the result, among other benefits, that food supplies to some countries badly affected by food scarcity can be assured and better fuel supplies can reach several countries (including those in Europe) which need them, particularly in the winter days ahead.

*All developed countries should make a substantial contribution to the relief and reconstruction work in Ukraine, while the emerging economies must also make at least some contribution. All relief and reconstruction help to Ukraine should be given as grant and not as loan. The relief and reconstruction work should be implemented by people’s committees formed for this purpose in a highly democratic and consultative way. Ensuring food and shelter for all people affected by conflict should be the immediate priority, followed by restoration of public utilities and return of all those displaced persons who want to return soon (while no one should be forced to return immediately).

*UN and neutral peace and disarmament organizations should initiate a program to monitor and ensure that the very high inflow of sophisticated and high destruction capability arms from western countries into Ukraine remains firmly within the control of the Ukraine government, and does not fall into the hands of non-state actors, extremist groups or arms traffickers. To the extent that this has already happened, efforts with international co-operation should be initiated to minimize the damage. Similarly, as conflict situations have generally been misused by those criminals who traffic in human beings (particularly women and children) reputed anti-trafficking organizations should be mobilized to minimize this possibility too and to the extent that some harm has already occurred, rescue and rehabilitation efforts must be initiated.

The beginning of a new year, generally regarded as a time of hope, would ideally be the right time for such a peace effort and agreement. This proposal, or somewhat similar peace efforts based on immediate ceasefire as a central point, should get very high priority.

Bharat Dogra is Honorary Convener, Campaign to Save Earth Now. His recent books include Planet in Peril, Protecting Earth for Children, Earth without Borders and A Day in 2071.


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