Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba appeared in a wide-ranging interview with the New Delhi TV channel (NDTV) on Thursday, during his first visit to India. The interview covered a host of subjects, including improvements in the India-Ukraine relationship, India’s aspirations to secure a seat on the UN Security Council, the planned Swiss-hosted peace summit, and Kyiv’s preparedness to enter negotiations with Russia on the basis of President Zelensky’s 10-point peace plan.

Kuleba said Ukraine feels India could be an important player in securing peace in the war in Ukraine because of its relationship with Russia and its leadership role in the region.

“India can play a very important role in bringing together more nations from the Global South... If India sits at the table of the peace formula, the initiative put forward by Ukraine to find a diplomatic solution to the war, then many other nations will feel much safer and comfortable sitting next to India and they will come and join this effort,” he said.

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President Zelensky asked Swiss President Viola Amherd to host a peace summit during his January visit, to which she agreed in principle.

Kuleba said India’s presence at the conference would be critical to its success.

Asked about the possibility of Russian participation, Kuleba said that Ukraine can begin peace negotiations with Russia within the framework of the Zelensky “peace formula” after the Swiss meeting. He said that Kyiv is ready to launch a diplomatic process to begin negotiations, the details of which would be agreed with participants in Berne.

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Zelensky drew parallels to the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979, which led to years of conflict and eventual US involvement.

“We said that at the first summit we will bring together all the states that share these principles [of the Zelensky peace plan], they will choose the menu items they want to work on… then, between the first and second summits, communication with Russia can take place in accordance with the rules approved by the participants.”

This echoed comments made by Andriy Yermak, the head of the Ukrainian President’s Office, at the end of February when he suggested that Kyiv would consider inviting Russia to a future peace summit.

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Asked to comment on Kuleba’s comments, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told Izvestia daily news broadcast that Moscow was ready to guarantee “the legitimate interests of other participants during a negotiation process on Ukraine.”

But Lavrov said such “negotiations cannot be based on the ‘peace formula’ proposed by President Vladimir Zelensky and promoted by Europe and the United States.”

He said that the basic demand in Zelensky’s “formula,” which called for Russia to allow the restoration of the 1991 borders by ceding Crimea, Donbas and Novorossiya [the occupied regions of southern Ukraine] remained unacceptable to the Kremlin.

Talks would need to be “on the basis of a serious analysis of the existing security problems, recognition of realities on the ground and guarantees of the Russian Federation’s legitimate security interests.”

He believed that a more realistic basis for peace talks was China’s February 2023 plan:

“This should serve as a basis for negotiations aimed at ensuring – this was the key provision – equal security to all participants in this process. This is our stance, [putting those] principles into practice can be found only at the negotiating table.”

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While Russia and Ukraine continue to disagree about the steps needed to secure peace, the fact that both sides are starting to talk about it openly may lay the groundwork for future negotiations.

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Comments (4)

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Tump
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The ukrainian FM looks very intelligent but his talks seems as blunt as their joker who had tabled a junk PEACE FORMULA demanding Putin to allow himself to be hanged. Idiots.

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John
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Hey who invited Lavrov to a peace summit?

If anyone in putins inner circle did understand what the word peace meant, it no longer concerns them. They lost their peace negotiation rights back in February 2022.

Just tape the terms of the orc force's surrender (that comes out of this Ukraine led meeting), to the end of a missile special delivered to the Kremlin. It's the peace language they better understand.

Trw
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@John, Why would the winning force surrender? The nazis will be made to surrender again, sorry mein Führer. History repeats itself, the nazi terrorists always lose, despite supposedly being "superior" to the "orcs" 😂

John
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@Trw, Winning? Is that what you call being an globally isolated, International condemned (143 nations), most sanctioned in history, economically about to crumble nation; from whence ~1 million skilled . affluent people have already voluntarily left its oppression, and having its youngest demographic (+440k) dead or badly wounded.

Ukraine has done all this with old stock weapon donations from its 75 allies. The good stuff and probably supporting allied boots on the ground area about to arrive. They are fighting to save their loved one's from your murderous, indicted war criminal leader. They are fighting to regain / protect their legally recognized borders.

All this because your madman leader tried to steal yet another country. Russia is clearly both legally and morally in the wrong. All crimes now timelessly documented. You think the world will forget this?

Russian's are going to have a hard time getting out of the pit of despair their tyrant has put them in. Meanwhile you still help him dig that pit deeper.

Wow.....you are really going to be despised by your country folk once putin is disposed and they begin clean-up of his supporters.

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Michael
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Neither the United States nor any European country is threatening Russia with invasion, nor have they for the entire post-Soviet period since 1991. If anything, the US and the EU bent over backwards from 1991 to Feb 24, 2022 to make concessions to Russia at the expense of Russia's near neighbours, Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia. Any claim by Moscow that they were 'forced' to invade Ukraine in order to achieve legitimate security for their state from foreign attack is a pure lie. The only country in Europe which has actually attacked another European sovereign country this 21st century has been Russia. It is Russia which is the threat to the security of other European nations, not the other way around. Everyone should simply dismiss out of hand Moscow's demands for territorial conquest and command over neighbouring countries' foreign and defence policies, dressed up though they are in a costume of 'security guarantees'.

John
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@Michael, Good post! Concisely stated and every point accurate.

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ron
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@Michael, US Strategy has alwats about containment of USSR and Russia and maintaining global hegemony. US has fought proxy wars and on the opposite side in many occasions including Ukraine and Syria. However, as it is said, the best way to avoid war is to open up free trade. A rising number of sanctions on both sides is not a peace strategy.

John
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@ron,

I suspect most Ukraine supporters here are probably not even American. I'm Canadian. Others span the globe with justifiably large portion being from EU nations or the UK.

As I recall ~143 nations in the UN voted that russia's invasion of Ukraine was illegal. Only 5 equally despot led nations supported their criminal buddy putin. The remaining ~20--30 weak knee'd led nations claimed "neutrality' (what a pile of crap).

So American targeted "Wha wha whataboutism" is meaningless to most of us, as far as MRGA diversion tactics go. You will have to try better Ron.

I support more sanctions against not only russia, but any nation supporting them, or while claiming 'neutrality' is criminally busting russian sanctions. Choose your side. There is no middle ground.

The crimes putin's regime is perpetrating in Ukraine cannot be ignored and they must be punished to such severe extent that they can never be instigated again

I also support NATO or other allied boots on the ground in Ukraine to actively support them. Putins threats?....meaningless....without teeth....I don't care.

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litterly everybody else
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the only socalled security issues rasshist have is that democracy makes an end to the kleptocracy of the mobster thugs in the fascist satanic terrorist gay nazi kriminals in the kriminalin in the sunken moskva
nato is a seldefence organisation and has absolute no intention to attack rasshit

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