How Poroshenko Distorted the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk

Translated by Ollie Richardson & Angelina Siard


On the 100th anniversary of the conclusion of the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk, President Poroshenko stated that “it is one of the symbolic victories of Ukrainian diplomacy”.

This was stated on the official Facebook page of the President Petro Poroshenko.

“On these days [2018 – ed] it is 100 years since the date of the signing of the Brest peace treaty. It is one of the symbolic victories of Ukrainian diplomacy,” wrote the President.

He added that it is thanks to this document that the Ukrainian People’s Republic was able to gain recognition of its independence by the States of Europe.

This concerns the Brest peace treaty, which was concluded by the UPR on February 9th with the so-called “central powers” – Germany and Austria-Hungary, which back then waged war (World War I) against the coalition of countries of the Entente led by France and Britain. As is known, the Entente won that war.

Some observers were very surprised that this peace treaty was called “a victory of Ukrainian diplomacy” – moreover, “symbolic” – by Poroshenko.

Here what is written by the journalist Andrey Blinov on Facebook:

1. It is “peace for bread”. The UPR took upon itself to deliver to Germany and Austria-Hungary before July 31st, 1918, one million tons of grain, 400 million eggs, up to 50,000 tons of beef, and also fat, sugar, hemp, manganese ore, and others.

2. In exchange, Germany and Austria-Hungary took upon themselves to introduce a contingent to ensure the protection of the UPR.

3. The border with Austria-Hungary was recorded as it was at the end of July, 1914, i.e., the UPR refused to lay a claim to Ternopil, Stanislav, and Lvov.

4. The UPR acquired the right to lay a claim to a part of the Belarusian and Polish territories of the former Russian Empire.

5. The treaty had a separate character. It was directed against the interests of the Entente, which as a result became the winners of World War I.

6. It also wasn’t without a confidential protocol. An agreement concerning Galicia and Bukovina: Austria-Hungary agreed to grant autonomous “edge of the crown” rights to Galicia and Bukovina before July 31st, 1918, but afterwards they didn’t do this because the UPR didn’t give enough reparations (grain).

7. Already one day before the conclusion of the agreement Kiev was already controlled by Bolsheviks.

8. In April, 1918, the UPR was liquidated as a result of supporting the idea of the hetmanate of Skoropadsky by German occupational troops. Skoropadsky guaranteed to Berlin and Vienna grain deliveries in strict accordance with the provisions of the Brest peace treaty.

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