Russian Press Secretary Dmitry Peskov stated that Russia is more than ready to stop its invasion of Ukraine if Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and the rest of its government agree on its new conditions.
Moscow, which has been suffering severe military losses amidst its war with Ukraine, demanded the following in an attempt to stop the war in its favor through an interview with Reuters.
First, Russia, through Peskov, demanded that Ukraine halt all military actions and stop engaging the Russian Armed Forces.
Second, change and amend its constitution to emphasize neutrality as a country and disarm itself.
Third, acknowledge that Crimea (which was annexed in 2014) is now a part of Russian territory,
Fourth, recognize the so-called Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics as independent states.
Claiming that they had been finishing the demilitarization of Ukraine, he explained that “they will finish it” and demanded that “Ukraine ceases its military action. They should stop their military action, and then no one will shoot.”
“We have also spoken about how they should recognize that Crimea is Russian territory and that they need to recognize that Donetsk and Luhansk are independent states. And that’s it. It will stop in a moment,” he said.
This set of demands, if accepted by Zelensky, would effectively give up its aspirations to join NATO and the European Union, which would be highly unlikely as Zelensky had already passed their application for membership to the EU, which the European Parliament later endorsed. The country would also be considered neutral but would leave it disarmed and without allies to resist Russian influence and its aims of territorial expansion. Some question remains as to whether Russia would ever keep to its end of the bargain as Putin has previously claimed that Ukraine is historically non-existent as a country.
Kremlin spokesman Peskov stated, however, that Russia did not have any further territorial claims other than those previously mentioned and that reports that it was wholly going to take the country were largely false. He further added that the Kremlin just wanted to demilitarize Ukraine and honor the so-called Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics’ wishes to be recognized as independent.
“This is not us seizing Luhansk and Donetsk from Ukraine. Donetsk and Luhansk don’t want to be part of Ukraine. But it doesn’t mean they should be destroyed as a result,” he said. “For the rest. Ukraine is an independent state that will live as it wants, but under conditions of neutrality,” he continued. This would leave the degree and nature of Ukrainian neutrality entirely up to Russia.
He stated that the Kremlin had been acting in defense of the population in Donbas, where over 3 million Russian-speaking Ukrainian citizens live. Peskov claimed that the Ukrainian government had been threatening and attacking these populations prior to the invasion with over 100,000 soldiers, which Ukraine denied and western observers could find no evidence of. Peskov also claimed that Ukraine was the security threat to Russia due to its ambitions to join NATO and align itself with Western Europe.
“Since then, the situation has worsened for us. In 2014, they began supplying weapons to Ukraine and preparing the army for NATO, bringing it in line with NATO standards,” the spokesperson stated.
Peskov: Sanctions Won’t Affect Us
This report comes after Peskov was quoted last March 5, stating that the West had been behaving like a bandit that was collectively engaging in “economic banditry” and claimed that there would be a “corresponding response” to it. However, these actions were not specified. He further claimed that Russia was far too big to be isolated from the world and claimed that many countries were still on their side of the fence.
Ironically, it can be remembered that the United Nations General Assembly voted overwhelmingly in Ukraine’s favor, demanding that Russia withdraw its troops from Ukrainian soil and that it deplored its inhumane invasion of Ukraine. It’s important to note that Canada and the US sanctioned Peskov himself as he is part of Putin’s close circle.
A confident Peskov claimed that the foreign companies who pulled out in support of Ukraine would soon be replaced with other companies as Russia was a so-called ‘attractive’ country for investment and that its economy would eventually recover from all the sanctions.
“A time of surging economic growth will replace this time. And a time when these same companies will again return to the market and will be more than interested in catching up on what they’ve missed out on and restoring their positions.”
3rd Round Of Peace Talks Yield No Significant Breakthroughs
These aforementioned demands were reportedly given and received by the Ukrainian delegation during the second round of peace talks held last week, which yielded no significant outcomes or breakthroughs.
Currently, the third round of peace talks has just ended without any breakthroughs as expected, leaving the public at the hands of continued Russian bombardments that have claimed hundreds of civilian lives. Positive subductions in improving humanitarian corridors and cease-fires were discussed. It is safe to say that the Ukrainian delegation did not accept this offer from Peskov and will likely not entertain such one-sided proposals.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba are also due to meet this Thursday in Turkey, which marks the first time the top representatives meet in person after the Russian invasion commenced on February 24.
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