Putin outlines terms for peace talks with Ukraine

RT, March 13, 2024 —

Negotiations should be based on reality rather than some “wants,” the Russian president has said.

Russia is ready for peace talks to end the Ukraine conflict, but Moscow is looking for meaningful dialogue that would provide security guarantees for the country and wants to be sure that negotiations will not serve as a break to rearm Kiev, President Vladimir Putin has said.

He was answering a question about Russia’s readiness to resume negotiations in an interview with journalist Dmitry Kiselyov on Wednesday. Putin said Moscow was open to talks. However, these should not be centered around “some ‘wants’ after the use of psychotropic drugs but based on realities that have developed on Earth.”  

It would be “ridiculous” to negotiate now “just because they [Ukraine] is running out of ammunition,” Putin noted, apparently referring to waning support from the US, Kiev’s main backer, as a $60 billion American aid package to Ukraine has stalled in the US Congress.

We are, however, ready for a serious conversation, and we want to resolve all conflicts, especially this conflict, through peaceful means. But we must clearly understand that this is not a pause that the enemy wants to take for rearmament, but this is a serious conversation with security guarantees for the Russian Federation.

In a conversation with American journalist Tucker Carlson last month, Putin reiterated that Russia remained ready for talks with Ukraine, but in order for them to take place, President Vladimir Zelensky must revoke his decree that forbids him from negotiating with Moscow.

Meaningful peace talks between Russia and Ukraine broke down in March 2022, with both sides accusing each other of making unrealistic demands.

Russian President Vladimir Putin subsequently said the Ukrainian delegation had initially agreed with some of Russia’s terms during the talks in Türkiye, but then abruptly reneged on the deal.

According to revelations by David Arakhamia, Ukraine’s top negotiator in Istanbul, then-UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson played a pivotal role in orchestrating the failure of the talks. As Arakhamia put it, Johnson at the time simply told the Ukrainians “Let’s just continue fighting,” and urged them not to sign anything with Russia. Johnson has denied having any role in derailing the peace talks.

Even since talks between Moscow and Kiev broke down, Russia has repeatedly stressed that it remains open to meaningful peace negotiations and has blamed the lack of a diplomatic breakthrough on the Ukrainian authorities.

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