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Ukraine-Russia negotiations begin in Belarus as war rages across Ukraine


The Jerusalem Post

Ukraine-Russia negotiations begin in Belarus as war rages across Ukraine


Talks between Russia and Ukraine began in Belarus on Monday morning, as fighting continued on the fifth day of Russia's invasion of its southwestern neighbor.

Negotiations ended early in the evening, and the delegants returned to their respective countries for deliberations before another round of negotiations.

In a phone conversation with France's President Emmanuel Macron, Putin set three conditions for the end of the war: Ukrainian recognition of Russian sovereignty over Crimea, solving problems of "demilitarization and denazification of the Ukrainian state" and ensuring Ukraine's "neutral status", according to Pravda.

The Belarusian Foreign Ministry shared a photo of the room where negotiations were taking place, tweeting that they were just waiting for delegations to arrive. The Ukrainian delegation arrived on Monday morning.

The head of the Russian delegation, Vladimir Medinsky, stated that Russia is interested in reaching agreements with Ukraine "as soon as possible." According to Ukrainian state media, Ukraine is demanding an immediate ceasefire and the withdrawal of Russian troops from the country.

Zelensky signed an official application to join the EU after announcing that he would request to do so in a special process.

There will be a debate about making Ukraine a member of the European Union, the bloc's chairman Charles Michel told French TV station BFM on Monday.

"This is a debate which, in any case, will be held," he said, adding that the bloc already had a "very powerful" association agreement with Ukraine which could be reinforced.

Meanwhile, the Vatican is ready to "facilitate dialog" between Russia and Ukraine to end the war, its top diplomat said on Monday.

Full story https://www.jpost.com/international/article-698856

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