LONDON (Reuters) – The Kremlin said on Thursday that Moscow was still waiting for Ukraine’s response to Russia’s latest written proposal in peace talks between the two sides, and questioned why Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky was not aware of the document.
On Wednesday, Zelensky said he had neither seen nor heard of the text that the Kremlin said it had sent.
“I repeat once again, as I said yesterday, that our formula, in fact the last version, was handed over to our opponents, to the Ukrainian negotiating delegation,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters.
Peskov said the Kremlin was aware of Zelensky’s comment, “which also raises certain questions about why no one has informed President Zelensky about our copies of the text.”
The comments issued by the two sides seemed to shed light on the Gulf in their positions and the poor state of communication between them, eight weeks after Russia sent its forces and tanks to Ukraine and more than three weeks after the last face-to-face talks. On March 29th.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said on April 12 that the talks had reached a dead end. Ukraine’s chief negotiator said on Tuesday it was difficult to predict when they would appeal due to Russia’s blockade of Mariupol and what he said was Moscow’s desire to bolster its position with a new military offensive.
Russia says it was forced to launch its “special military operation” to disarm and “discredit” Ukraine, and protect Russian speakers there from “genocide” – arguments Kyiv and the West have denounced as unfounded excuses for war.
Moscow wants Kyiv to accept the loss of Crimea, which it captured from Ukraine in 2014, and the eastern Donbass region that is now the focus of the Russian offensive. Ukraine says it will not give up its sovereignty and territorial integrity.
(This story corrects a typo in Zelensky’s first name in the first paragraph)
(Writing by Mark Trevelyan, Editing by Angus McSwan)
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