| 16 July 2024, Tuesday |

Lavrov says Russia is ‘interested’ in ending Ukraine conflict ‘as soon as possible’

During a news conference with Brazilian Foreign Minister Mauro Vieira in Brasilia, Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Monday, that Moscow is “interested” to end the ongoing war with Ukraine “as soon as possible.”
Lavrov met with President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and thanked Brazil for its efforts to resolve the conflict. The meeting took place amid the West criticising Lula’s recent remarks on the defence support for Ukraine from the United States.
During his China visit, Lula had said that the US needs to stop “encouraging” the war and start talking about peace. He also called on the European Union needs to start talking about peace.
Lavrov praised Lula’s efforts in attempting to end the war by urging to promote of diplomatic channels to de-escalate the conflict. Before starting his visit, Lula had proposed creating a group of countries to mediate in the war. He had even said that he would discuss it with Beijing, but there was no update on the same.
While mentioning the interest to end the war and the conflict, Lavrov reiterated Russia’s stance that any diplomatic solution must acknowledge the realities of its unilateral annexation of four Ukrainian provinces.
Lavrov said, “We are interested in the Ukrainian conflict ending as soon as possible. We have already announced in detail the reasons for what is happening and the very goals that we are pursuing in this regard.”
“They consist primarily in guaranteeing the absence of any threats to the military security of the Russian Federation on the territory of Ukraine, and the West has been implementing such plans for many years. And the second task, of course, is to protect the lives and legal rights of the Russian-speaking population of the east and south of Ukraine,” he added.
Meanwhile, Ukraine has often said that for it, the true meaning of peace would include Kyiv taking back Crimea and Russia giving up the occupied regions.
Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said last week: “Real peace means restoring the internationally recognized borders of Ukraine. Real peace means a safe homeland for the targeted people in the Ukrainian Crimea.”

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