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16th Mar 2022

Zelensky says peace talks “sound more realistic” as negotiations continue

Dave Hanratty

Zelensky peace talks Russia Ukraine

Russian forces “have already begun to understand that they will not achieve anything by war”, said President Zelensky.

Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky has suggested that peace negotiations with Russian officials are progressing, noting that the latest round of talks featured “more realistic” dialogue.

Speaking in his latest address on Tuesday night, Zelensky said that the talks between Ukrainian and Russian officials were “pretty good” overall.

“The meetings continue, and, I am told the positions during the negotiations already sound more realistic,” Zelensky said.

“However, more time is still needed for decisions to be in the interests of Ukraine.”

Both sides will convene once again on Wednesday.

According to President Zelensky, his Russian counterparts “have already begun to understand that they will not achieve anything by war” as the conflict enters its 21st day.

Zelensky has also stated that the “door is closed” with regards to the potential of Ukraine joining Nato.

The Ukrainian capital Kyiv has enacted a 35-hour curfew as an overall assault on the city continues.

A fresh round of explosions have been reported in the capital as of Wednesday morning.

According to the United Nations, over three million people have fled Ukraine since the Russian invasion commenced in February.

Presidential aide Mykhailo Podolyak, who is part of the Ukrainian negotiation delegation, spoke of a “very difficult” process but also hinted at cause for optimism.

“There are fundamental contradictions but there is certainly room for compromise,” he said.

Speaking on RTÉ’s Six One News on Tuesday evening, Taoiseach Micheál Martin noted that the world is “anxious not to provoke a third World War” when discussing the current crisis.

“What we’re up against here is a leader who seems to work in a 19th-century sort of context who believes he has the right to attack people, to annex a country because of some historic view he has of the world,” he said.

“It’s immoral and in my view, the behaviour is irrational from a human perspective.”

The Taoiseach was then asked if the world was doing enough to stop what is happening in Ukraine.

“The world is doing everything it possibly can, the free world is,” he responded.

“Those who oppose authoritarianism and despotic regimes are doing everything they possibly can within the limits of being very anxious not to provoke a third World War, for example.

“There are real limits to the degree of intervention that the US and others can undertake here but up to those limits, everything possible has been done.”

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