Russia ready for Ukraine peace deal – Kremlin
Ukraine can end the ongoing conflict at any time by conceding to Russia’s conditions, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Wednesday.
“Russia is ready [for a peace deal], the Ukrainian side is well-aware of our terms. One way or another, they will be fulfilled,” the official told journalists.
Peskov went on to explain that back in late March the two countries were close to settling their differences in a way that was acceptable to Russia, but the draft agreement prepared during a meeting in Istanbul was torpedoed by the Ukrainian side.
Kiev broke off talks with Moscow after accusing Russia of committing war crimes, an allegation that Russia said was based on fabricated evidence. The Ukrainian leadership has since insisted that negotiations can only be resumed after Russia is defeated on the battlefield with the help of Western weapons.
Dmitry Peskov also commented on the recent visit to Moscow by former German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, who, the Kremlin spokesman confirmed, met with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Despite media speculation that the former German leader could serve as a mediator in the Ukraine conflict, the 78-year-old “expressed no desire” to do so, Peskov said.
Russia sent troops into Ukraine on February 24, citing Kiev’s failure to implement the Minsk agreements, designed to give the regions of Donetsk and Lugansk special status within the Ukrainian state. The protocols, brokered by Germany and France, were first signed in 2014. Former Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has since admitted that Kiev’s main goal was to use the ceasefire to buy time and “create powerful armed forces.”
In February 2022, the Kremlin recognized the Donbass republics as independent states and demanded that Ukraine officially declare itself a neutral country that will never join any Western military bloc. Kiev insists the Russian offensive was completely unprovoked.