What is Putin’s plan in Ukraine? Foreign Minister Lavrov met separatists on Friday and voiced old allegations and surprising plans – doubts are warranted.
Update from February 25, 5 p.m: Russia has now officially submitted an offer for negotiations in the Ukraine conflict. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Friday evening, according to the Russian news agency Interfax. There seems to be a dispute about the location of the conversation. Russia wants to speak to the other side in the Belarusian capital of Minsk. Instead, Ukraine suggested Poland’s capital, Warsaw, as the venue for the negotiations. Putin’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov had previously set out the terms of the talks (see first report).
Ukraine conflict: Russia suddenly ready to negotiate – under one tough condition
First report from February 25: Moscow/Brussels – What is the Kremlin’s plan in the Ukraine conflict – and how could things continue after Russia’s military “goals” have been achieved? At least on the first question, Vladimir Putin’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov gave an answer on Friday.
“No one will occupy Ukraine,” Lavrov claimed. “The purpose of the operation was openly stated: demilitarization and denazification.” The Kremlin has claimed for years that in 2014 foreign-controlled “fascists” staged a coup in Kiev. At the time, the Ukrainian population overthrew President Viktor Yanukovych at the “Euro-Maidan” – the aim was to turn towards the EU instead of close cooperation with Russia.
Lavrov assured: “We are interested in the Ukrainian people being independent and having a government that represents their full diversity.” The foreign minister also did not rule out a diplomatic rapprochement: after the restoration of the “democratic order” the situation would be negotiated again to permit.
However, Russia had recently annoyed its negotiating partners with officially announced false announcements – this applied to withdrawal announcements in February, but also to talks at the highest intergovernmental level. Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock (Greens), among others, raised the most serious allegations after Russia invaded Ukraine.
Ukraine and Russia at war: Kremlin spokesman comments on Zelenskyi proposal
At the same time, the Kremlin welcomed a proposal by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. Moscow has accepted the offer of talks on Ukraine’s neutral status as a step in the right direction, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said in Moscow, according to the Interfax agency. The message will be analyzed and Zelenskyy will be recognized as President of Ukraine. “Yes, of course. (…) He is the President of Ukraine.” However, nothing can currently be said about the possibility of contact.
On Friday afternoon, according to Lavrov, Russia agreed to talks – if the Ukrainian army surrenders. “We are always ready to negotiate as soon as the Ukrainian armed forces respond to our request and lay down their arms,” Lavrov said on Friday. Russian troops would want to rid the country of “oppression,” he added.
A little later, apparently, Putin himself expressed himself in a similar way. In a conversation with China’s President Xi Jinping, he said he was ready for “high-level talks” with Ukraine – at least that’s what the Chinese Foreign Ministry said. The Kremlin initially did not comment.
Selenskyj had made an offer to talk to Putin on Thursday night to avert a war. He said: “Ukraine’s security is linked to the security of its neighbors. So today we have to talk about security across Europe. The necessity of the operation will soon become clear to the West, said Peskov. “As the understanding of the inevitability of the operation matures, as the inevitability of these tough and decisive actions on the part of Russia to ensure security becomes clear, a period of normalization will also come,” Peskov said.
Ukraine war: Putin’s foreign minister meets separatists – and renews claims
On Friday, Lavrov also stuck to the Kremlin narrative and in his statement once again denied Ukraine’s democratic legitimacy. “We see no possibility of recognizing as democratic a government that oppresses its own people and uses genocidal methods,” Lavrov said.
The minister also met the leaders of the separatist areas on Friday. The areas would be freed from “oppression,” he explained. The Ukrainians could thus freely determine their future. With the recognition published by Vladimir Putin on Monday, Russia intends to establish diplomatic relations with the self-proclaimed People’s Republics of Luhansk and Donetsk. According to the Interfax agency, Lavrov said the population had been subjected to “fire from the Kiev regime”. He announced that he would submit evidence of the alleged “genocide” in eastern Ukraine to the United Nations.
Russia-Ukraine conflict: Kremlin continues to speak of “denazification”
Moscow had already announced a “denazification” of Ukraine on Thursday. Lavrov is now also confirming this representation. The genocide allegations are clearly branded by the USA, among others, as a constructed pretext for the ongoing invasion.
The allegation of a fascist orientation also caused horror because of the political constellation: In a speech to the Russian population, Selenskyj rhetorically asked how he could be a Nazi – Selenskyj is himself a Jew. Putin himself leads his country according to many observers in authoritarian structures*. (fn/dpa) *fr.de is an offer from IPPEN.MEDIA.
#Ukraine #war #Russia #presents #Ukraine #negotiation #offer