Support The Moscow Times!

Russia Claims Progress in Talks With Kyiv on a Neutral Ukraine

Medinsky said Friday that negotiators were "half-way" towards an agreement on the "demilitarisation" of Ukraine. TASS / EPA

Russia's top negotiator at talks with Ukraine said Friday that Moscow and Kyiv had brought their positions "as close as possible" on a proposal for Ukraine to become a neutral state.

The Kremlin on Wednesday said that a neutral Ukraine along the lines of Sweden or Austria was being discussed at talks with Kyiv to end three weeks of a Russian military operation there.

But Ukraine rejected the proposal, and said it wanted its security to be guaranteed by international forces.

"The topic of neutral status and Ukraine's non-accession to NATO is one of the key points of the talks, this is the point on which the parties brought their positions as close as possible," Russia's lead negotiator Vladimir Medinsky said on Friday, cited by Russian news agencies.

But he added that there were "nuances" when it came to "security guarantees" requested by Ukraine.

Russia, which has been conducting a military operation in Ukraine since February 24, has requested that its neighbour never join the Western NATO military alliance, as well as demanding its "demilitarisation" and "denazification."

Medinsky said Friday that negotiators were "half-way" towards an agreement on the "demilitarisation" of Ukraine.

Mikhailo Podolyak, an advisor to Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelensky taking part in the negotiations, however said his country's position had not budged.

"Negotiation status. The statements of the Russian side are only their requesting positions," he wrote on Twitter.

"All statements are intended, inter alia, to provoke tension in the media. Our positions are unchanged. Ceasefire, withdrawal of troops & strong security guarantees with concrete formulas."

… we have a small favor to ask. As you may have heard, The Moscow Times, an independent news source for over 30 years, has been unjustly branded as a "foreign agent" by the Russian government. This blatant attempt to silence our voice is a direct assault on the integrity of journalism and the values we hold dear.

We, the journalists of The Moscow Times, refuse to be silenced. Our commitment to providing accurate and unbiased reporting on Russia remains unshaken. But we need your help to continue our critical mission.

Your support, no matter how small, makes a world of difference. If you can, please support us monthly starting from just $2. It's quick to set up, and you can be confident that you're making a significant impact every month by supporting open, independent journalism. Thank you.

Once
Monthly
Annual
Continue
paiment methods
Not ready to support today?
Remind me later.

Read more