Moscow hopes for a peace settlement: Vladimir Putin
Russia’s President Vladmir Putin told the UN Chief that Moscow still hopes to negotiate a peaceful settlement with Ukraine, even as the fighting has continued. The talks in Turkey stalled after the discovery of the civilian bodies in an area near the Kyiv previously occupied by the Russian forces.
Vladmir Putin said to Guterres that he was aware of your concern about Russian military operation” in Ukraine and ready to discuss it, but blamed the turmoil in the country on an “anti-state coup” that overturned a pro- Russian president in 2014. The Russian President said to UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, “Despite the fact that the military operation is ongoing, we still hope that we will be able to reach agreements on the diplomatic track, we are negotiating, we don't refuse.”
In Tuesday 's meeting which was held at the Kremlin meeting with the UN secretary General, Antonio Guterres, Putin noted that Russian and Ukrainian negotiators made what he described as a “serious breakthrough” in their conversations last month in Istanbul, Turkey... However, he claimed that the Ukrainian side later walked back on some of the tentative agreements reached in Istanbul.
Meanwhile, Ukrainian President Vladmir Zelensky said on Tuesday that, capture of Chernobyl nuclear power plant in the initial phase of Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine by Russia, and this is the reason which has pushed the world toward the “brink of disaster”. “Once more the world was on the verge of disaster” because Russia considered the Chernobyl zone “as a normal battleground, territory where they didn’t even try to take care about nuclear safety,” propounded by Ukrainian President Zelensky during a press conference with UN atomic chief Rafael Grossi.
During a meeting in Moscow Putin and UN secretary General Antonio Guterres discussed the situation at the huge Azovstal steel plant, where the last defenders of Mariupol are hunkered down after the months of the Russian Siege and bombardment. After the meeting, UN spokesperson, Stephen Dujjaric said that, “Follow-on discussion will be had with the United Nations office for the coordination of Humanitarian Affairs and the Russian defense minister.”
From an earlier meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, Guterres repeated his call for Moscow and Kyiv to work together with the UN to set up aid and evacuation corridors to help the civilians in Ukraine.
During Tuesday’s Kremlin meeting, UN Secretary Guetrres criticized the military actions of Russia in Ukraine as a violation of territorial integrity of its neighbour. He also requested Russia to allow the clearance of civilians trapped at a giant steel mill in Mariupol surrounded by the Russian forces. Putin responded by asserting that the Russian forces have offered humanitarian corridors to civilians holed up at the Azovstal steel plant, charging that the Ukrainian defenders of the plant were wielding civilians as shields and not allowing them to leave. Russian President Vladmir Putin concurred to the UN and international committee 'In principle’ for the Red Cross (ICRC) indulgence in the evacuation of civilians from a besieged steel plant in Ukraine’s Southern city of Mariupol, the United Nation said on Tuesday.
Ukraine also appealed for the involvement of the UN and ICRC for the purpose of evacuation of civilians. UN chief Antonio Guterres is expected to meet the Ukrainian President after the appeal.