Laying out certain conditions, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said that he is ready to have “genuine peace talks” with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin.
His shift in stance comes after the West nudged the Ukrainian leader to initiate discussions with Putin to achieve a long-lasting solution to the conflict.
Among the conditions set out by Zelensky on Monday include returning Ukrainian control over its territories, ensure reparations for destruction and bringing to justice perpetrators of war crimes.
However, it is believed that Russia would not agree to the preconditions listed out by the Ukrainian leader and hence would not lead to any talks.
Kyiv has been making significant advances in the battlefield in recent months, thanks to the military aid provided by the West.
Russia, too, has intensified its attacks following the Crimean bridge attack, which is claimed to have been done by the Ukrainian forces.
US officials have been urging Zelensky to hold talks with Putin over fears that public support for the country’s war effort could dwindle with no end to the conflict in sight.
Recently, US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan extended “unwavering and unflinching” support during his visit to Kyiv.
“We fully intend to ensure that the resources are there as necessary and that we’ll get votes from both sides of the aisle to make that happen,” Sullivan told reporters during a briefing at the Ukrainian presidential administration.
There have been demands amongst some Republicans to scale back military aid to Kyiv even as experts and opinion polls tip the Grand Old Party to take control of the US Congress.