As long as Vladimir Putin is in charge of Russia, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky will not engage in peace talks. On Friday, he stated this in a post on his official Telegram channel.
Zelensky blamed Russia for the breakdown of discussions, claiming that he had “always offered Russia cohabitation on equal, honest, respectful and fair conditions.” He insisted that it was “clear this is impossible with current Russian president.”
We are prepared to have a conversation with Russia, but with a different Russian president, he wrote. The majority of his Telegram postings include an English translation, but this one was written entirely in Ukrainian.
Zelensky has repeatedly rejected Moscow’s peace offers, most recently rejecting Putin’s invitation to continue talks on Friday. Because Putin refuses to give up the territories that this week chose to join Russia, Kiev rejected the offer.
Zelensky stated in his speech that the only way to bring about peace was by fortifying Ukraine and driving the occupiers out of our whole territory.
Zelensky said that Ukraine has submitted an expedited application to join NATO on Friday, something he had previously acknowledged was unlikely to occur. The Ukrainian president said that since Sweden and Finland were permitted to join on an expedited basis without a Membership Action Plan, it was only “fair” that Ukraine should do the same. The decision, according to Western media, was “more symbolic than practical.”
In another Telegram message, he stated that “de facto, we have already finished our route to NATO.” “De facto, we have already shown compatibility with the standards of the Alliance… We are able to rely on, support, and safeguard one another.
Zelensky has acknowledged in the past that Ukraine may find it difficult to win the support of all 30 NATO members. As a result, he has advocated for the so-called Kiev Security Compact, which would require NATO’s core members to defend Ukraine “in case of aggression” while codifying the provision of limitless military and financial aid as a stopgap measure.
Admitting Ukraine would trigger NATO’s obligation under Article 5’s mutual defense clause to engage Russia right away. Jake Sullivan, the national security advisor to Vice President Joe Biden, stated on Friday that while the US is dedicated to the “open door” policy when it comes to NATO, the moment is not right to examine Ukraine’s membership application.
As Putin has made clear even before the military campaign started in February that Ukraine must remain a neutral country at all times, the move would also make peace with Moscow impossible.
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