President Zelensky: Putin has one year to strike deal to end war

President Zelensky: Putin has one year to strike deal to end war

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky says he is ready to walk away from Russia talks unless there is progress on the settlement of the situation in Donbas.

“Time is ticking…The government can spend one year on the entire agreement. Then it should be implemented. Any longer is prohibited,” Zelensky told The Guardian in an interview.

Zelensky said his meeting with Putin in Paris in December had “a few emotional parts”. He believes he got through to Putin during the meeting: “I think he listened to me. I had that feeling. I hope it’s not a false feeling.”

Ukraine’s president believes he can negotiate a deal with Vladimir Putin to end the war in Ukraine, but has threatened to walk away from talks after a year if there is no progress with his Russian counterpart.

Zelensky gave a deadline of a year from December’s first summit with Putin to find a breakthrough. “I won’t give my five years, which were given to me by the Ukrainian people, to work on Minsk for five years. I won’t do it,” he said, adding there were “two or three plans” of what to do after walking away from talks, but declining to elaborate.

The President of Ukraine said the peace negotiations were a distraction from his domestic agenda, which has been hampered by political infighting that culminated in his decision this week to oust the prime minister.


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