April 23, 2024

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War in Ukraine: Endless first round of talks in the context of fighting

The first talks between Moscow and Kiev took place on Monday. However, the results are not over yet and Russia has not stopped continuing and intensifying the fighting as it continues its offensive in Ukraine.

Negotiations began on the Belarusian border, after which the two sides returned to “consult in their capitals”. According to Russian chief negotiator Vladimir Medinsky, the participants agreed to a new meeting “soon” on the Polish-Belarusian border. The content of the discussions was not made public.

Vladimir Putin, however, recalled his conditions during an exchange with his French representative, the current president of the European Union, Emmanuel Macron. The leader calls for the recognition of Crimea as a Russian territory and for the “neutralization” of Kiev and the “denationalization” of Ukraine, which many observers are struggling to understand and signify a change of political regime.

“A solution is possible only if Russia’s legal security interests are unconditionally taken into account,” the Kremlin reiterated after their talks. Ukraine, for its part, demanded a ceasefire and the withdrawal of Russian troops.

“At the moment, the demands seem unreasonable,” says Magdalena Dempinska, a professor of political science at the University of Montreal.

She suspects that the conflict will be resolved through negotiations, and she finds no solution on the horizon. “I do not know how Ukraine will accept the claims at the negotiating table,” he said. Over the next few days a compromise was reached with Mr. He adds that during the negotiations that led to the signing of the Minsk agreements in 2015, many ceasefires were not respected.

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Guillaume Gregoire-Sauvé, a Russian expert and guest researcher at the Center for International Studies and Research at the University of Montreal (CERIUM), notes that “the general objectives of the Russian process are not very clear.”

He puts forward the hypothesis that the Russian leader is actually asking for more than he expects. “You can not really know what the status of the negotiations is, what the hypocrisy is, because the content of the negotiations is not public,” he said. Negotiations are being held because of the military situation on the ground, he added.

The fight continues

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zhelensky on Monday called on Russian troops to “land”. [leurs] Save the weapons “” [leur] Life “, but this militant rhetorical army did not stop its bombing and its progress.

On Monday evening, a large convoy of Russian armor, about 65 kilometers long, was advancing towards Kiev, according to satellite images. On the ground, the Ukrainian army said it had thwarted several attempts by Russian forces to attack the suburbs of the capital during the day.

The curfew order was lifted Monday morning and Russian forces are eagerly awaiting the mobilization of the population. “We welcome them with Molotov cocktails and bullets on their heads, and that’s how we welcome them,” said bank employee Viktor Rudnishenko.

The landscape of the Ukrainian capital has changed. Trenches were dug, temporary barricades were erected in the streets to stop the advancing Russian tanks, and checkpoints were set up.

The beginning of the talks coincided with intense fighting in Kharkiv, the country’s second-largest city on the Russian border. The regional governor said at least 11 civilians had been killed in Russian shelling of residential areas.

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Militarily, especially in the air, Russian forces have “tremendous mobility freedom” across Ukraine, and satellite images show long rows of vehicles in the open, “they are confident in their own positions.

Sunday’s alert of Vladimir Putin’s nuclear forces was accepted with concern and raised old monsters. However, the United States said Monday that there was no “concrete” change in Russia’s nuclear capability.

Option to join the EU

Russia had to defend its invasion of Ukraine at the UN General Assembly on Monday, during its 193-member emergency special session, which repeatedly called for an end to the war, declaring it “unwise”.

The photo of the Ukrainian president signing his document of joining the European Union (EU) was circulating on social media during the day. “We are in talks with the European Union on the immediate integration of Ukraine through a new special procedure,” Volodymyr Zelensky said in a video. “I’m sure it’s right. I’m sure it’s possible,” he said.

This practice is not like that, and integration into the EU is usually a process that will take many years and require complex negotiations. This requires the unanimous approval of the 27 member states.

The European Parliament will vote on the draft resolution on Tuesday, which will be supported by all organizations except one political group, which will call on Ukraine as a candidate to join the European Union. “It was impossible a month ago, but in the current spirit of unity, it is not impossible for Europeans to open the door to Ukraine,” explains Frédéric Mérand, science director at CERIUM.

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He adds that Hungary is the only country that can put a spokesman on the wheels of Ukraine, as Prime Minister Victor Orban has a special relationship with Vladimir Putin.

The UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) says more than 500,000 people have fled Ukraine since the Russian offensive began on Thursday.

With Agencies France-Press

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