Russia says it doesn’t want war

Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday he wanted to “continue to work together” with Westerners on European security to defuse the crisis over Ukraine.

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“We are ready to continue working together. We are ready to go down the path of negotiations,” he declared in Moscow during a press conference with German Chancellor Olaf Schulz.

However, he once again lamented the Westerners’ rejection of his main demands, regretting that he had not received a “unfortunately constructive response” to them.

These demands mark the end of the alliance’s expansion policy, a commitment not to deploy offensive weapons near Russian territory, and the withdrawal of NATO infrastructure from the 1997 borders, before the organization no longer hosts former members of the Soviet bloc.

The Russian president also stressed that he does not give up on these demands and that these demands will be part of the “node” of the Russian-Western talks.

Do we want (war) or not? of course not. That is why we put forward our proposals for the negotiation process.

Mr. Putin also confirmed a “partial withdrawal of the army” from the border with Ukraine, but declined to comment on that.

He also said that he “cannot close his eyes to the way in which the United States and NATO deal with the principle of indivisibility of security,” considering that the West is trying to strengthen its security at the expense of Russia’s.

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Among the advanced topics on which Western proposals agree with those of the Russians, there is the topic of controlling short and medium-range weapons.

Regarding the conflict between Ukrainian forces and pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine, where the peace process has stalled for more than two years while Franco-German mediators are trying to revive it, M. Schulz and Putin once again insisted on their commitment to the 2015 Minsk agreements.

But the Russian president again accused the Ukrainian government of committing a “genocide” of the population of the separatist regions, without specifying these accusations, which were already made last year.

Russia and Ukraine accuse each other of obstructing the peace process.

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About the Author: Hermínio Guimarães

"Introvertido premiado. Viciado em mídia social sutilmente charmoso. Praticante de zumbis. Aficionado por música irritantemente humilde."

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