Zelenskyy warns against believing Putin's claims of negotiation readiness

Volodymyr Zelenskyy
Volodymyr Zelenskyy

During a briefing with Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez on May 27, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy cautioned the global community against accepting Russian President Vladimir Putin's assertions of readiness for peace talks.

"Putin talks a lot about negotiations," Zelenskyy noted. He added, "But different nations have already dealt with similar dictators who do not lie only when they are silent."

Zelenskyy emphasized the importance of judging Russia by its actions rather than the words of its leader.

Read also: Don't let Russia influence you - Zelenskyy to Central Asian leaders on Global Peace Summit attendance

Prospects for Peace Talks with Russia At the "Ukraine. Year 2024" forum on February 25, President Zelenskyy mentioned that Ukraine would provide a platform for Putin to acknowledge his defeat in the ongoing conflict. In a March 28 interview with CBS, Zelenskyy expressed that Putin might be open to dialogue only after losing the territories he has occupied since 2022.

Following Zelenskyy's remarks, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov referred to the "accession" of the occupied Ukrainian territories to Russia as a counterpoint.

Amid these political maneuvers, misinformation has also surfaced. Russian media cited former Fox News anchor Tucker Carlson, who claimed, after an interview with Putin, that the Russian leader was prepared to "make a serious compromise on Ukraine." However, this statement was promptly refuted by Ukraine’s Center for Strategic Communications and Information Security as another disinformation attempt.

Read also: Bulgarian President Radev calls for peace talks, says Ukraine cannot defeat Russia

Insights from Ukrainian Intelligence Vadym Skibitskyi, deputy head of Ukraine’s Defense Intelligence, shared in a May 3 interview with The Economist his view that Ukraine cannot solely rely on military means to win the war, suggesting that a peace treaty will likely be the solution.

Recent public opinion in Ukraine also leans towards diplomacy, with a Kyiv International Institute of Sociology survey showing that 72% of Ukrainians favor seeking a diplomatic resolution to the conflict.

Reports from Europe 1 on May 17 indicated that Western nations are encouraging President Zelenskyy to enter negotiations to end the Russian aggression.

Looking ahead, Switzerland is set to host a major peace conference in mid-June 2024, focusing on Ukraine's Peace Formula. The conference, expected to attract 80 to 100 countries, will notably proceed without Russian participation.

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