A new round of talks between the Russian and Ukrainian delegations could start in Turkey as early as Tuesday, the Kremlin said, adding that the talks had yielded few breakthroughs.
David Arakhamia, a member of the Ukrainian delegation, confirmed that the talks were to resume in Istanbul on Tuesday morning.
“Although we cannot and do not want to talk about progress during the talks, the fact that they continue to take place in person is of course important,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.
Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan agreed on Sunday that Istanbul would host peace talks this week.
Putin’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told reporters on Monday that the Russian and Ukrainian delegations could potentially reach an agreement in the talks because Moscow believed NATO had heard some of its security concerns. reported the Tass news agency.
“So I still see that there is a chance of reaching an agreement, because there is an understanding of the gross mistakes of our Western partners of many years, it is present now, although for understandable reasons they will hardly say out loud,” Lavrov said. .
“We have an interest in seeing these talks succeed, an outcome that will meet our main objectives,” Lavrov said.
However, he also listed issues Moscow plans to raise, such as the demilitarization and “denazification” of Ukraine, which have previously thwarted progress.
“When we negotiate with the Ukrainian side now. . . we are obligated to make sure that Ukraine stops settling militarily with the West and with NATO,” Lavrov said. “Let Ukraine stop being a constantly militarized country.”
Putin could meet his Ukrainian counterpart Volodymyr Zelensky in the future, Lavrov added, but only after progress has been made on Russia’s key goals, because a meeting simply to exchange views now would be ‘counterproductive’. .
Zelensky said before the peace talks that Ukraine was ready to declare neutrality, abandon its bid to join NATO and agree not to develop nuclear weapons if Russia withdraws its troops and kyiv receives security guarantees.