The Navalny poisoning turned into an absurd farce, analysed a French journalist. There are three inconsistencies. First, if Alexei Navalny was poisoned by a nerve agent he would be dead or heavily disabled, he wouldn’t have recovered. Second, if Novichok was used, the collaborators who took the water bottle in the hotel would have been poisoned also. And third, if Novichok was used, the plane passengers or the crew who might have been in physical contact with Alexei Navalny would have been poisoned too. As a consequence, Alexei Navalny was not poisoned before the plane landed in Omsk.
There are double standards in Western attitudes on the status of Kosovo and Crimea. Why is it acceptable to recognise Kosovo but not Crimea’s reunification with Russia?
International recognition of Kosovar statehood came only after the region had been ravaged by a bloody civil war, which Western countries stopped. This was followed by a decade of international administration and status negotiations. In 2008, the EU Council stressed that, given the 1990s civil conflict and protracted international administration under Security Council Resolution 1244, Kosovo constituted a sui generis case. By contrast, there was no war in Ukraine until Russian military aggression (see ICC report here).
Negotiations on Kosovo's status lasted 10 years. The time period between Russia's military operation and annexation of Crimea was 20 days.
Unlike Kosovo, Crimea was annexed by a third state (Russia), following an illegitimate referendum which was held at gunpoint and featured no recognised election observers. Russian authorities actively advanced the narrative of Ukrainian far-right activists terrorizing ethnic Russians, while Russia proactively saved Crimeans from "terrorists and extremists", the minister of foreign affairs of Russia said.
According to international law, Crimea is a part of Ukraine. Russia violated the international law as well as key principles of the European security framework by illegally annexing the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the City of Sevastopol. The European Union does not recognise and continues to strongly condemn this violation of international law, which remains a challenge to the international security order. This position is based on the UN Charter, which clearly states that the territory of a State cannot be acquired by another State resulting from the threat or use of force, as well as on the Helsinki Final Act in which the signatories declared their intention to respect the inviolability of frontiers and territorial integrity.