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5 Jun, 2023 09:23

Russia reacts to Indonesian peace plan

Any effort to resolve the conflict in Ukraine is welcome, a senior diplomat said of the proposal
Russia reacts to Indonesian peace plan

Moscow appreciates any initiatives by other nations to achieve peace, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Andrey Rudenko has said, reacting to an Indonesian proposal for a ceasefire in Ukraine. Kiev has rejected the plan, branding it as beneficial to Russia.

“We welcome the efforts by all nations that are aimed at the peaceful resolution of this conflict,” the senior Russian diplomat told TASS on Monday, when asked about the Indonesian idea. He added that his department had not received any formal proposals from its Indonesian counterpart, but had read media reports about it.

Indonesian Defense Minister Prabowo Subianto outlined the peace initiative last Saturday during the Shangri-La Dialogue security conference in Singapore. It involves stopping active hostilities, deploying a UN peacekeeping force to separate Russian and Ukrainian troops, and organizing new referendums in some of the contested territories to allow people living there self-determination.

Kiev rejected the Indonesian roadmap and reiterated its demand that Russian troops withdraw from all territories that it claims to be under its sovereignty. Last year, when four formerly Ukrainian regions voted to split from the country and join Russia, the Ukrainian government dismissed the referendums as a “sham.”

“A ceasefire without the withdrawal of Russian troops from Ukraine will allow Russia to win time, regroup, fortify the occupied territories and accumulate forces for a new wave of aggression,” Ukrainian Foreign Ministry spokesman Oleg Nikolenko said.

Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky has insisted that the only acceptable way forward would be the one he set forth in his so-called “peace plan,” which boils down to Moscow conceding defeat and paying reparations, with the international community offering Ukraine a generous assistance program. Kiev has banned any talks with Russia as long as Vladimir Putin remains its president.

The US and its allies, which are bankrolling the Ukrainian government as it confronts Russia, have claimed that the time for peace talks may come only after their client state acquires a “stronger position” by achieving battlefield successes using Western-provided weapons.