Russia's foreign minister said Wednesday he was convinced that Moscow would achieve its goals in Ukraine thanks to its "patience" and "perseverance."
"I am convinced that thanks to our perseverance, patience and determination, we will defend the noble goals that are vital for our people and our country," Russia's top diplomat Sergei Lavrov said in an interview broadcast on national television Wednesday.
He reiterated Moscow's stance that for talks to resume Kyiv should recognize the annexation by Russia of four Ukrainian regions.
"Our absolute priority is four new Russian regions," Lavrov said. "They should become free from the threat of Nazification that they have faced for many years."
Russia does not currently control the regions of Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson and Zaporizhzhia in full, and Lavrov confirmed that was Moscow's ultimate goal.
Lavrov said that while Moscow wanted the conflict to be over, Russia would take its time to achieve its goals on the battlefield.
"We are in no hurry," he said.
"We would like to end this war as soon as possible, which the West was preparing and, as a result, unleashed against us through Ukraine," he added.
"We are a patient people. We will protect our compatriots, citizens and lands that have been Russian for centuries."