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Kremlin denies report that Putin reached out to the US about talks on ending the war in Ukraine

Putin
Russian President Vladimir Putin.MIKHAIL METZEL/POOL/AFP via Getty Images
  • The Kremlin denied Putin reached out to the US about talks on ending the war in Ukraine.

  • A Bloomberg report said Putin was "testing the waters" over the US's willingness to engage in talks.

  • Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said the report "absolutely does not correspond to reality."

A Kremlin spokesperson has denied a report that Russian President Vladimir Putin reached out to the US about talks on ending the war in Ukraine, Reuters reported.

Bloomberg reported earlier this week that Putin had "put out feelers to the US via indirect channels," suggesting that he was prepared to engage in talks over ending the conflict.

The report, cites two people with close links to the Kremlin and says that senior US officials were made aware of the signals in December via an unnamed intermediary.

The sources reportedly said that Putin could be willing to end his demands over Ukraine's neutrality and, eventually, his opposition to the country joining NATO.

But it noted that US officials had said they were unaware of any such proposals and that they had no sign that the Russian president was serious about looking to bring his forces' invasion of Ukraine to a close.

"We are unaware of the shifts in Russia's position described," US National Security Council spokeswoman Adrienne Watson said, per Bloomberg.

"It will be up to Ukraine to decide whether, when, and how to negotiate with Russia."

In response to questions about the report — and specifically if Putin would be willing to give up his demands over Ukraine's neutrality and NATO, Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said it was "a wrong report."

"It absolutely does not correspond to reality," he added.

But Peskov told Bloomberg News, "President Putin has stated numerous times that Russia was, is and will continue to be open for negotiations on Ukraine."

"We are determined to reach our goals. And would prefer to complete it by diplomatic means. If not, the military operation will be continued till we reach our goals," he added.

In November, Putin told G20 leaders that the war in Ukraine was a "tragedy" and that we must think about how to stop it, Reuters reported.

Read the original article on Business Insider