Ukrainian President Says Talks with Russia Necessary to End War

Ukrainian President Says Talks with Russia Necessary to End War

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Friday called for a meeting with Russian leader Vladimir Putin in an effort to “put an end to the war”.

Zelensky said Ukraine was not eager to talk to Russia's Vladimir Putin but that it has to face the reality that this will likely be necessary to end the war.

"There are things to discuss with the Russian leader. I'm not telling you that to me our people are eager to talk to him, but we have to face the realities of what we are living through," Zelenskiy said in an address to an Indonesian think tank, NDTV reported.

"What do we want from this meeting... We want our lives back... We want to reclaim the life of a sovereign country within its own territory," he said, adding that Russia did not appear to be ready yet for serious peace talks.

The results of negotiations, which could have a variety of subjects “according to the timing of the meeting,” would have to be “fair” for Ukraine, Zelensky stressed.

The president spoke of a document about security guarantees for his nation, saying it would be signed by “friends and partners of Ukraine, without Moscow.” A bilateral discussion would be held with Russia at the same time, he added.

He also recalled Kyiv’s absolute precondition for continuing talks that Russia does not kill Ukrainian troops who defended the Azovstal steelworks in Mariupol.

Zelensky noted Russian troops “offered the possibility, found a way for these people to come out alive,” from Azovstal.

“The most important thing for me is to save the maximum number of people and soldiers.”

According to Moscow 2,439 Ukrainians have surrendered at the plant since May 16, the final 500 on Friday.

On Tuesday, Kyiv’s lead negotiator Mykhaylo Podolyak said talks with Russia were “on hold” after taking place regularly in the earlier stages of the conflict but without substantial results.

The following day Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov accused Kyiv authorities of not wanting to continue talks to end hostilities.

“Talks are indeed not moving forward and we note the complete lack of will of Ukrainian negotiators to continue this process,” he said.

The last talks took place on April 22, according to Russian news agencies.

After failing to take Kyiv following the February 24 invasion of Ukraine, Russian troops are now concentrating on the east of the country, where fierce clashes are ongoing.

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