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Ukraine And Russia Making Significant Progress In Peace Talks

Jess Hardiman

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| Last updated 

Ukraine And Russia Making Significant Progress In Peace Talks

Ukraine and Russia have made significant progress on a tentative 15-point peace plan, according to the Financial Times, with the outlet citing 'three people' involved in the negotiations.

The proposed neutrality plan to end the war not only includes a ceasefire, but also Russian withdrawal – on the condition that Kyiv declares neutrality and accepts limits on its armed forces.

Mykhailo Podolyak, a senior adviser to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, told the Financial Times that any deal would involve 'the troops of the Russian Federation [...] leaving' the areas of Ukraine that have been captured since Russia invaded last month – specifically southern regions along the Azov and Black Seas, along with territory to the east and north of Kyiv.

He also explained in a tweet this afternoon (Wednesday 16 March): "Our position at the negotiations is quite specific – legally verified security guarantees; ceasefire; withdrawal of Russian troops. This is possible only with a direct dialogue between the heads of Ukraine and the Russian Federation."

Credit: Alamy
Credit: Alamy

According to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s press secretary Dmitry Peskov, neutrality for Ukraine based on the status of Austria or Sweden is a possibility.

Speaking to reporters today, Peskov said: “This option is really being discussed now, and is one that can be considered neutral."

Sergei Lavrov, Russia’s foreign minister, also said that 'absolutely specific wordings' in the negotiations were 'close to being agreed'.

Earlier today, Lavrov said neutral status was 'being serious discussed' along with 'security guarantees'.

"The negotiations are not easy for obvious reasons," he told the RBC news channel on Wednesday. "But nevertheless, there is some hope of reaching a compromise."

Credit: Alamy
Credit: Alamy

In a virtual address to members of US Congress today, President Zelenskyy urged Americans to remember the attack on Pearl Harbor and 9/11 as he appealed for the country to do more to help Ukraine.

In a live-streamed message, he said: “Remember Pearl Harbor? Remember September 11? Our countries experience the same every day right now.”

Zelenskyy showed a graphic video of the destruction his country has suffered in the past few weeks, along with footage of civilian casualties.

"We need you right now," he said, adding: “I call on you to do more.”

The leader said peace was 'more important than income', asking the US to enforce a no-fly zone or to provide means such as fighter jets to help defend defend Russia's attack, and to introduce stricter sanctions on Moscow.

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Ukraine

Jess Hardiman
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