Zelensky repeats demands to G7 leaders
A settlement to the conflict with Moscow could be achieved if Kiev and its Western backers take three steps, Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky told the G7 on Monday. He listed respectively more arms deliveries, measures to strengthen Ukraine’s economic resilience and diplomatic efforts.
The same formula was presented by the Ukrainian president at the G20 summit in November, and includes references to the restoration of Ukraine’s territorial integrity, the “withdrawal of Russian troops, and cessation of hostilities.” The proposal was rejected out of hand by Moscow.
In a virtual address, Zelensky told the Group of Seven (G7) that to “accelerate the coming of peace,” Ukraine needs “a new force,” which would require shipments of modern tanks, artillery, and long-range missiles.
“We must maintain financial, energy, and social stability next year,” he added, urging G7 members to increase their economic assistance to Ukraine on energy and reconstruction.
The third step is “a new diplomacy,” he continued. “I propose to convene a special summit – Global Peace Formula Summit – to determine how and when we can implement the points of the Ukrainian Peace Formula.” Earlier, Zelensky expressed this idea in a conversation with US President Joe Biden.
Back in November, Zelensky stated that Ukraine had no intention of signing a new Minsk agreement, arguing that Russia would “violate [it] immediately after the signing.” The now-defunct Minsk-1 and Minsk-2 accords were signed in 2014 and 2015 with the mediation of Germany, France, and Russia.
The agreements sought to pave the way for peace by granting the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics special status within the Ukrainian state.
On Monday, Kremlin Press Secretary Dmitry Peskov noted that Moscow “had not heard anything about President Zelensky’s peace-building efforts,” referring to the proposal for a global peace summit.
Earlier, the spokesman said the rejection of the Minsk format by the Ukrainian president “absolutely confirms” the unwillingness of Kiev to negotiate with Moscow.
Nevertheless, Moscow has maintained that it is open to talks with Kiev if it sees genuine “political will” on Ukraine’s part to engage in dialogue.