Russia not ready for Ukraine's negotiating position – Podolyak

Russia not ready for Ukraine's negotiating position – Podolyak

Mykhailo Podolyak, an adviser to the head of the Ukrainian President's Office, has said that Russia is currently not ready for Ukraine's negotiating position, which is "absolutely normal."

He said this live on Radio NV, according to an Ukrinform correspondent.

According to Podolyak, in the context of specific terms, when it is possible to sit down at the negotiating table, the consensus that exists in society should be clearly stated.

"There is a clear understanding in society that the war must end properly - on Ukraine's terms and without any 'Minsk Protocols.' That is, there cannot be any line of contact, criminal enclaves cannot remain on Ukrainian territory, Russia cannot remain on Ukrainian territory, because it will be a constant provocation from the point of view of continuing to sort out relations. [...] That's why such a consensus exists," the official said.

He added that after large-scale war crimes committed by Russia, "something else was added to this consensus - that we should take a large amount of debt from Russia."

"I don't mean the amount in money. They must pay for all these crimes concretely or in long legal terms, or a certain number of people must end their existence on the battlefield. This consensus exists," Podolyak said.

He said that President Volodymyr Zelensky had repeatedly voiced Ukraine's negotiating positions.

"We formulate them as follows: please leave our entire territory, withdraw all troops not to the conditional borders as of February 23, but completely to the borders internationally recognized in 1991, including the Crimean peninsula, destroy all your illegally constructed objects, including the so-called Kerch Bridge. After that, we will sit down at the negotiating table," Podolyak said.

According to him, the Ukrainian side is ready to talk about three things: "The first is reparations from the point of view of all the losses that Ukraine has suffered. The second is how we exist, coexist, since you [Russia] are neighbors, from the point of view of security for of Ukraine. And the third thing is a certain legal responsibility that must be borne by a number of people, including those with Russian citizenship, who committed crimes in Ukraine," he said.

At the same time, Podolyak said that "today, Russia is not yet ready for an absolutely normal negotiating position of Ukraine."

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