Putin Ready for Diplomatic Solution to Conflict Over Ukraine
President Vladimir Putin is ready to look for “diplomatic solutions” in the conflict over Ukraine.
Russia is “always open to direct and honest dialogue and to seeking diplomatic solutions to the most complex problems,” he said. But Russia’s interests, such as the security of its citizens, are non-negotiable, according to Putin.
Putin spoke in a video message on the occasion of a national holiday, the Day of Defense of the Fatherland.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has cancelled a planned meeting with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov. The two were due to meet in Geneva on Thursday. According to him, Russia has clearly rejected all diplomacy.
Russia has announced it will send troops to eastern Ukraine and recognize the separatist regions of Donetsk and Luhansk. Moscow says the Ukrainian government has torpedoed the 2015 Minsk accords. They were intended to avert the civil war in the pro-Russian region of Donbas.