Putin Showed The African Leaders The “Pact on The Neutrality of Ukraine”

Russian President Vladimir Putin at the talks with the leaders of African countries on June 17 showed a document he called the “Treaty on the Neutrality of Ukraine.” According to him, the agreement was prepared at the talks between Moscow and Kyiv in Istanbul at the beginning of the war in 2022. He states that the signing of the document was thwarted by Ukraine.

According to Putin, the document was called the “Treaty on Permanent
Neutrality and Security Guarantees for Ukraine” and consisted of 18 articles. The appendix indicates the maximum size of the Ukrainian army.

“We did not refuse negotiations. The Ukrainian side refused,” he said. According to him, this happened after the withdrawal of Russian troops from Kyiv.

The meeting of the Russian and Ukrainian delegations in Istanbul took place in March 2022. Then it was alleged that Kiev handed over to Moscow its draft treaty on the neutral status of Ukraine and international guarantees of its security. It was argued that Russia was supposed to be among the guarantors.

At the end of March, Russian troops retreated from the capital of Ukraine, Kyiv, where they broke through at the beginning of the invasion. A few days later, President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky accused Russia of genocide – in the liberated territories, in particular, in the city of Bucha near Kiev, traces of war crimes were found, including murders and rapes of civilians by the Russian military.

Shortly thereafter, negotiations between Moscow and Kiev were interrupted. In the fall, Russia announced the annexation of four Ukrainian regions. After that, Ukraine officially abandoned the negotiations with Putin and applied for an accelerated entry into NATO.

The African leaders whom Putin met on June 17 in St. Petersburg arrived in Ukraine and then in Russia with a peace mission proposal. As reported by Reuters, they have prepared a confidence-building plan between Moscow and Kiev, designed to pave the way for negotiations between the countries.

On June 16, the plan was rejected by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. He stated that negotiations are impossible until Russia withdraws its troops from the territory of the country. On June 17, Putin said that Moscow was “open to dialogue,” but Ukraine was not ready for it.

The peace plan of Ukraine, which Zelensky presented to the world community, provides for the withdrawal of troops, the payment of reparations and the trial of war criminals. At a conference in May, European Union High Representative for Foreign Affairs Josep Borrell said Kyiv’s proposals were the only ones that could be called a peace plan. This “peace formula” was also supported by representatives of the United States and other Western countries.

On Sunday, the German newspaper Welt am Sonntag published an interview with NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg. He stated that the freezing of the conflict proposed by African leaders is unacceptable, and real peace can only be concluded on Ukraine’s terms, the first of which is the complete withdrawal of Russian troops from the country’s territory.

Source : Радио Свобода

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