Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov sees hope for a compromise in negotiations with Ukraine. It appears that these will be held online daily this week and should also continue on Wednesday.
According to Russian media, Lavrov bases this on his delegation, which states that the negotiations are, of course difficult, but that there is a chance for a compromise on the horizon.
Some members of the Ukrainian delegation feel the same way, according to Lavrov. He pointed out that Ukrainian President Volodimir Zelensky has recently made interesting statements. Zelensky, for example, said he believes the parties’ positions have now become more realistic.
The delegations’ first round of talks was held on 28 February in southeastern Belarus, a few days after the start of the Russian attack on Ukraine. At the time, the parties mainly exchanged demands and ultimatums. On Tuesday, Zelensky said Ukrainians should realize that their country will not join NATO.
According to a Russian negotiator, Vladimir Medinsky, talks are moving very slowly, and Russia sincerely wants peace as soon as possible. Russia needs “a peaceful, free, independent and neutral Ukraine, which is therefore not a member of any military alliance, not a NATO member”.
Ukraine’s previous push to join the Western alliance has been a thorn in the side of Russian President Vladimir Putin. He does not want any more former Soviet republics to become NATO members. He sees this as a hostile attitude from the West and a threat to Russia’s security.