Putin is ready to end the war against Ukraine through negotiations, but has his own conditions – Reuters

Putin at a meeting with Lukashenko in Minsk on May 23, 2024. Kremlin photo

Russian dictator Vladimir Putin is ready to start negotiations to end the war in Ukraine. His condition is that Kyiv recognizes the "borders" along which the front line now runs. According to the dictator, Russia's success in the war is now enough to "sell" the victory to the Russian people.

Reuters writes about this, citing four sources in Russia. According to the agency, Putin is ready to wage war and seize more territory to force Ukraine and the West to negotiate.

Thus, the sources said that the fighting would continue if Moscow's proposal remains unanswered.

Putin is ready to end the war against Ukraine through negotiations, but has his own conditions – Reuters

Three sources familiar with the discussions in Putin's inner circle said he expressed frustration to a small group of close associates that Ukraine refuses to negotiate with Russia on his terms, and that the West is supporting it.

"Putin can fight as long as he needs to, but Putin is also ready for a ceasefire – to freeze the war," said another senior Russian source out of four who has worked with Putin and is aware of the top-level discussions in the Kremlin.

Reuters added that it had spoken to a total of five people who work or have worked with Putin at a high level. The fifth source did not comment on the freezing of the war on the current fronts.

Putin's spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, responding to a request for comment, said that the Kremlin leader has repeatedly made it clear that Russia is "open to dialogue" to achieve its goals and does not want "eternal war."

Ukraine's Foreign and Defense Ministries did not respond to the question, Reuters said.

The agency also notes that the appointment of economist Andrei Belousov as Russian Defense Minister was perceived by some Western military and political analysts as a move to put the Russian economy on permanent war footing in order to win the protracted conflict.

This follows the constant pressure on the battlefield and the aggressor country's territorial gains in recent weeks, the article says.

Nevertheless, the agency's sources said that Putin would like to use the current dynamics of Russia's development to put the war behind him. They did not comment directly on the change of defense minister.

Based on their knowledge of the highest echelons of the Kremlin, two sources said that Putin believes that Russia's success in the war is now enough to "sell" victory to the Russian people.

In addition, three sources said: Putin understands that any new "dramatic" achievements would require another nationwide mobilization, which he would not want, and one source familiar with the dictator said that Putin's popularity has fallen since the first mobilization in September 2022.

The "national conscription" scared part of the Russian population, forcing hundreds of thousands of men of military age to leave the country, Reuters writes. Peskov later said that Russia allegedly does not need mobilization and is instead recruiting contract volunteers into its armed forces.

The prospect of a ceasefire or even peace talks now seems remote, the agency said in its article.

It is also noted that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy rejected the possibility of peace on Putin's terms, promised to return the lost territories, including Crimea, and in 2022 signed a decree officially declaring any negotiations with Putin "impossible."

One source predicted that there would be no deal as long as Zelenskyy was in power unless Russia bypassed him and struck a deal with Washington.

However, U.S. Secretary of State Anthony Blinken, speaking in Kyiv last week, told reporters that he did not believe Putin was interested in serious negotiations.


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