Kiev announces real progress in negotiations with Moscow

Ukraine’s chief negotiator in peace talks with Russia says Moscow has “verbally” accepted his country’s key proposals. There is even mention of a meeting between Presidents Zelensky and Putin in Turkey.

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Ukraine’s chief negotiator in peace talks with Russia said on Saturday (April 2) that Moscow had accepted “oral” the main Ukrainian proposals. During a televised broadcast, David Arakhamia hinted that talks aimed at ending hostilities had made significant progress.

“The Russian Federation has issued an official response to all positions” [ukrainiennes]namely, that it accepts them, except with regard to the matter of Crimea”, annexed by Moscow in 2014, the person concerned assured. He added that if there was “no official written confirmation”the russian side has accepted it “oral”.

The negotiator also said that if a meeting between Ukrainian presidents Volodymyr Zelensky and Russian presidents Vladimir Putin finally takes place, it will go ahead. “very likely” in Turkey. Turkish head of state Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who this week hosted the Russian and Ukrainian delegations in his country, “called us and Vladimir Putin” On Friday, he said he would organize such a meeting. “We don’t know the date or the place, but we think the place will most likely be Ankara or Istanbul”noted David arakhamia.

Since the beginning of the invasion of Ukraine on February 24, Volodymyr Zelensky has repeatedly called for face-to-face talks with Vladimir Putin. The Ukrainian negotiator pointed out that during the talks Moscow had agreed to hold a referendum on Ukraine’s neutrality “the only way out of this situation”. If the Ukrainians do not agree to such a status, “We will either return to a state of war, perhaps, or to new negotiations.” The Kremlin urged Ukraine to give up its accession to NATO and opt for neutrality.