The adviser to the head of Zelensky’s office, Mikhail Podolyak, commented on the words of the deputy head of the presidential administration of the Russian Federation Dmitry Kozak that Russia offered Germany and France to hold talks in Donbass with the participation of the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics (DPR and LPR). According to Podolyak, this could blur the very idea of negotiations.
“We regard Dmitry Kozak’s proposal to hold a kind of ‘mixed’ negotiations in Donbass with the participation of representatives of France, Germany, Ukraine, Russia and non-legal entities from CADLO as something that can blur the very idea of negotiations. To ensure constructiveness, Dmitry Kozak’s proposal can be considered and tried to be implemented at the level of a trilateral contact group, “RBC-Ukraine quotes Podolyak.
On April 23, Kozak said that Russia had proposed to Germany and France to discuss until April 27 the issues of a truce in eastern Ukraine and the implementation of the Minsk agreements. He noted that it was proposed to hold negotiations “directly in the conflict zone with the participation of representatives of Ukraine and certain areas of Donetsk and Luhansk regions.”
He noted that Kiev is aimed not at establishing peace in Donbass, but at avoiding dialogue with Donetsk and Lugansk.
On April 20, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy offered to meet with Russian leader Vladimir Putin “anywhere” in Donbass. According to him, the different views of Kiev and Moscow on the past and the future can be viewed not as a problem, but as an opportunity.
The Russian President responded to the proposal of the Ukrainian leader, noting that if Kiev wants to restore relations, Moscow will only welcome this. According to Putin, in order to develop bilateral relations, the Russian Federation will receive Zelensky in Moscow at any time convenient for him. The Russian leader stressed that the Ukrainian authorities have taken a lot of steps destroying relations between the two countries.
Also, according to Putin, Zelensky needs to negotiate the situation in the region with the leaders of the DPR and LPR and only then discuss this issue with third countries.
The head of the LPR, Leonid Pasechnik, has already announced his readiness to meet with the President of Ukraine at any point on the contact line in Donbass.