The US State Department says Washington supports diplomacy, but won’t push Kiev “into concessions”
Washington will back any negotiations to peacefully resolve the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, but it won’t persuade Kiev to surrender to Moscow, US State Department spokesman Ned Price said on Thursday.
“We have told the Ukrainian government in no uncertain terms that we stand ready to support any diplomacy it wishes to pursue. But, as we’ve always said, we will not push them into concessions,”Price was stated at a press conference.
On Thursday, the Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov met his Ukrainian counterpart Dmytro Kunleba in Turkey in the highest-profile meetings between both sides since the beginning of the Russian offensive on February 24th.
Moscow and Kiev also participated in three rounds of discussions in Belarus. However, they have failed to reach any meaningful results.
Russia claims it has intervened to protect Ukraine “demilitarize”And “denazify”Russia, to make sure that those who are responsible for the “The” Moscow called it accountable “genocide”civilians living in the rebel republics of Donetsk or Lugansk.
The Kremlin’s other demands include a neutral status for Ukraine, meaning it won’t be able to join NATO, and the recognition by Kiev that Crimea is part of Russia and the aforementioned republics are independent states.
These terms, Price stated, would be fulfilled “the surrender of Ukraine”That was it! “not something that can be achieved or solved or addressed through diplomacy.”
He expressed the hope that “the pressure it’s encountering on the battlefield [and] the economic dire straits that it’s in back at home”Moscow should be encouraged to enter into negotiations with Ukraine “in a way that actually involves good faith.”
“We haven’t seen that yet, but we will continue to mount pressure on the Kremlin, on President Putin, until we do,” he vowed.
Minsk Russian negotiators slammed the Ukrainian delegation for making forward “absurd and unrealistic” demands in an attempt to derail Moscow’s initiative to open humanitarian corridors so civilians can leave besieged cities in Ukraine. While claiming that Kiev refused most of the proposed routes, it suggested its own. They also claimed that Russia should dispose of mines left behind by Ukrainian forces as well as rebuild the bridge they destroyed by retreating troops.
Lavrov stated that Kiev had merely tried to give the impression it was serious about diplomatic efforts after the talks with Kuleba. His Ukrainian counterpart was criticised for telling the media that the ceasefire hadn’t been reached, despite not having been discussed at the meeting.
Lavrov stated that he would not rule out negotiations between Volodymyr and Vladimir Putin, however, additional preparations are necessary for any such meet-up. It should not be “a meeting for the sake of meeting,”He stated.