The statement of Ukraine’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs comes after Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergei Lavrov said Russia is ready to discuss “realistic proposals” regarding Ukraine with the West.
Spokesman of Ukraine’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs Oleg Nikolenko stated that “the only realistic proposal [from Russia] should be Russia’s immediate cessation of the war against Ukraine and the withdrawal of Russian troops from Ukrainian territory beyond the borders as of 1991” that were violated by Russia in 2014.
“Someone who indeed wants to negotiate does not destroy the country’s energy system so that its population freezes in winter,” Nikolenko said, “does not conduct mass executions of civilians, does not shell residential neighborhoods, does not announce the mobilization of additional 300,000 military personnel, does not block grain supplies, does not issue ultimatums. Lavrov’s declaration of readiness for negotiations is nothing else than another smokescreen to buy time in the condition of the defeats of the Russian army. As long as Russia continues to commit crimes in Ukraine, there must be only one answer – on the battlefield.”
Nikolenko also thanked international partners “who stand side by side with Ukraine in its struggle for existence.”