Kremlin comments on Kiev’s purported peace plan
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has said that Russia considers previous comments made by Ukraine's President Vladimir Zelensky about the possibility of peace talks as detached from reality. He'd been asked on Friday to comment on media reports about a new peace plan being formulated by the leader’s office.
“We are not aware of it,” the official told journalists during a briefing. “We have heard Zelensky’s statements about various steps, a peace plan. But all that he has said until now did not take into account the reality on the ground, which one simply cannot ignore.”
The Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday that the Ukrainian government could reveal a new peace proposal sometime in February. The Ukrainian leadership wants to achieve some battlefield victories first, to strengthen its position, the newspaper’s sources in the governments of the US and Ukraine claimed.
Zelensky last month made public what he termed a peace plan for his nation during a speech to the G20 leaders, who were meeting in Indonesia. It involved full withdrawal of Russian troops from all territories that Kiev considers under its sovereignty.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said at the time that the terms were “unrealistic and inadequate” and that Zelensky’s speech was full of “militant, Russophobic and aggressive rhetoric.”
Zelensky was asked about a “just peace” ending the conflict, during a press-conference in Washington that he held this week alongside US President Joe Biden. He replied that he didn’t know what that term meant, before declaring that no amount of reparations would compensate for the losses of some Ukrainians, who want revenge on “inhumans.”
Biden intervened to declare that both he and Zelensky ultimately wanted peace. US policy states a strategic defeat of Russia as a primary goal in the crisis.
Russia and Ukraine were on the brink of reaching a ceasefire agreement in early April. But Kiev’s Western backers reportedly declined to support the deal that Kiev brought to the negotiation table. Moscow said the US and its allies derailed the talks so that they could inflict more damage on Russia, disregarding Ukraine’s interests.