Zelensky: Ukraine does not want the war to last for years

Zelensky says peace plan should be on the table within months

Ukraine does not want to "prolong the war”; the settlement plan, developed jointly with Ukrainian allies, should "be on the table” within a few months, President Volodymyr Zelensky said at a press conference in Brussels.

"We don't have much time because a lot of people are dying. Therefore, we do not want the war to continue for many years. We want to prepare this [peace] plan as soon as possible,” Zelensky said (quoted by Interfax Ukraine).

Zelensky also said that the peace plan was being developed for the second “peace summit.” The first took place in Switzerland in mid-June. The Ukrainian president did not specify where exactly the second summit was going to take place.

Zelensky last reported the losses of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in February of this year. According to him, by that time Ukraine had lost 31,000 soldiers killed. Sergei Shoigu, who held the post of the Russian Defense Minister at that time, reported that same month that the losses of the Armed Forces of Ukraine amounted to over 444,000 people. Moscow last reported Russian military losses in September 2022 — 5,937.

Russia and Ukraine peace demands

The final declaration of the “peace summit” in Bürgenstock contained the following demands:

  • Zaporizhzhia (spelled the Russian way as Zaporozhye) nuclear power plant should be returned under Ukraine's control;
  • the threat of the use of nuclear weapons should be excluded;
  • full and to safe access should be provided to Ukrainian ports in Black and Azov Seas, as well as to Ukrainian agricultural products;
  • Ukrainian children should be returned home. 

Eighty-two countries signed the communiqué of the Swiss summit for Ukraine. 

Russia was not invited to the conference, but Zelensky promised to transfer the results of the summit to Moscow in order to record the end of the military conflict at the second summit. 

Moscow excludes negotiations with Kyiv based on the “peace formula” and calls for taking into account “realities on the ground.”

President Vladimir Putin called the summit in Switzerland a trick the purpose of which was to “distract everyone’s attention and reverse the cause and effect of the Ukrainian crisis.” On June 14, Putin presented Moscow's conditions for negotiations to resolve the conflict:

  • The Armed Forces of Ukraine must be completely withdrawn from Donetsk and Luhansk People's Republics, as well as from the Zaporizhzhia (Zaporozhye) and Kherson regions (incorporated into Russia in September 2022), including the territories that Kyiv keeps under control (with Kherson and Zaporozhye being among them);
  • The Ukrainian authorities must also formally notify Russia of abandoning plans to join NATO;
  • The status of Crimea, Sevastopol, DPR, LPR, Kherson and Zaporozhye regions should be enshrined in international treaties as Russian regions;
  • Western sanctions against Russia must be lifted.

When Kyiv takes real steps towards fulfilling these conditions, Russia will order to cease fire and start the talks. If the conflict continues, the realities on the ground will be changing and “the conditions for negotiations will be different,” Putin also noted.

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Author`s name Andrey Mihayloff
Editor Dmitry Sudakov