Presidential Adviser Mikhailo Podolyak said that making concessions would negatively affect Ukraine, because Russia would strike harder after any pause in fighting, noting that “Kyiv’s position in the war has become more solid.”
“The war will not stop (after any concessions). It will be suspended for some time,” Podolyak told Reuters in an interview in the heavily guarded presidential office.
He added, “After a while, and with a new intensification, the Russians will strengthen their weapons and manpower, correct their mistakes, improve their performance, and dismiss many generals…and will launch a new, bloodier and broader offensive.”
Podolyak rejected calls in the West for an immediate cease-fire that includes the continued control of Russian forces over the territories in eastern and southern Ukraine, describing these calls as “extremely strange.”
“The (Russian) forces must leave the country and after that it will be possible to resume the peace process,” Podolyak said.
Both sides say peace talks are faltering, and each blames the other for it.
The Russian offensive on February 24 killed thousands of people, displaced millions, and destroyed villages and cities.
Russia says it has taken full control of the southern city of Mariupol in what it calls its “special military operation” in Ukraine, but its offensive has stalled in other areas, while Ukrainian forces have been strengthened by increased arms supplies from its allies.
Podolyak said a ceasefire would be in the Kremlin’s favour.
He added: “They want to achieve some kind of military success. Certainly there will be no military success with the help of our Western partners.”
He continued, “It would be good for the European and American elites to fully understand that Russia cannot be left in the middle of the road because they (develop) a vengeful mood and they will be even more ruthless… They must be defeated painfully, as painfully as possible.”
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