| 29 November 2023, Wednesday |

Kremlin says it needs to understand aims of Ukraine talks reportedly planned in Saudi Arabia

The Kremlin declared that it was necessary to learn the objective of impending meetings that would allegedly be held about the conflict in Ukraine in Saudi Arabia.

On Saturday, The Wall Street Journal claimed that Saudi Arabia would invite Western nations, Ukraine, and significant emerging nations to the negotiations. According to the newspaper, Kiev and Western nations believed that the discussions, which would exclude Russia, would result in international support for peace conditions that would benefit Ukraine.

Asked about the WSJ report, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said: “Of course, Russia will follow this meeting. We need to understand what goals are set and what will be discussed. Any attempt to promote a peaceful settlement deserves a positive evaluation.”

However, Peskov also restated Moscow’s position that it currently saw no grounds for peace talks with Kyiv.

“The Kyiv regime does not want and cannot want peace, as long as it is used exclusively as a tool in the war of the collective West with Russia,” he said on a call with reporters.

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has previously expressed a readiness to mediate in the conflict.

President Vladimir Putin said on Saturday that an African initiative – which envisages confidence-building measures followed by a cessation of hostilities – could be a basis for peace in Ukraine but that Ukrainian attacks on Russia made this very hard to realise.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has rejected the idea of a ceasefire now that would leave Russia in control of nearly a fifth of his country and give its forces time to regroup after 17 grinding months of war.

  • Reuters