Putin Dashes Erdogan’s Hopes Of Peace Talks on Ukraine – Russian President Vladimir Putin reaffirmed his willingness to engage in negotiations with Ukraine during a call with Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan on Thursday, while dashing his hopes of peace negotiations at the same time. The Russian president insisted that while he is open to negotiations, he would first require Kyiv to recognize the annexation of Crimea in 2014 and the four additional annexations that took place in September.
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A statement from the Kremlin said that the Russian president “reaffirmed Russia’s openness to a serious dialogue” during his call with the Turkish president, but that it would require the Ukrainian government to “fulfill the well-known and repeatedly voices requirements and take into account the new territorial realities.”
The Kremlin also confirmed that the Russian president “acknowledged the destructive role of the West” in the conflict, specifically regarding the supply of weapons and ammunition to Ukraine.
Putin’s refusal to make concessions means that meaningful negotiations with Ukraine are unlikely to go ahead, given the West’s collective commitment to supply Ukraine with weapons for as long as it takes to win the war.
It’s also a blow to Erdogan, who has consistently banged the drum for diplomatic negotiations since the outbreak of the war.
Erdogan Wants “Unilateral” Ceasefire in Ukraine
The office of President Erdogan also told reporters on Thursday that he proposed a “unilateral” ceasefire in Ukraine to the Russian president.
“President Erdogan said that calls for peace and negotiations should be sup[ported by a unilateral ceasefire and a vision for a fair solution,” Erdogan’s office said.
On Thursday, the Russian president proposed a cease-fire over the Orthodox Russian Christmas period which was rejected by Ukraine.
Putin proposed a ceasefire that would allow Orthodox soldiers and civilians in Ukraine to attend church services on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, which is celebrated on January 7.
Chinese President Predicts Difficult Road Ahead
In a video conference discussion with the Russian president last Friday, Chinese President Xi Jinping predicted a difficult road ahead for Ukraine-Russia peace talks. During the discussion, the Chinese president said that the road to peace negotiations with Ukraine would not be smooth and that China will maintain an “objective and fair stance” on the matter.
“The Chinese side has noted that the Russian side has said it has never refused to resolve the conflict through diplomatic negotiations, and expressed its appreciation for this,” Xi reportedly said during the call.
Jack Buckby is 19FortyFive’s Breaking News Editor. He is a British author, counter-extremism researcher, and journalist based in New York. Reporting on the U.K., Europe, and the U.S., he works to analyze and understand left-wing and right-wing radicalization, and reports on Western governments’ approaches to the pressing issues of today. His books and research papers explore these themes and propose pragmatic solutions to our increasingly polarized society.