Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko said on Sunday that Kiev is making a “mistake” by setting conditions for starting negotiations with Russia. According to Lukashenko, it is precisely the imposition of conditions that makes the initiation of such negotiations impossible.
“The mistake of Ukrainians, (Ukrainian President) Volodymyr Zelensky, is that they violate the typical principles of the negotiation process. Especially when talking to huge Russia. Well, you can’t set conditions in advance,” Lukashenko said in an interview with Russian state television, quoted by CNN. “Sit down at the negotiating table and present all the conditions (until) there. And the second typical principle (of negotiations) – compromises,” the Belarusian president added.
Belarus is a close ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin. During the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Moscow already provided its territory for sending Russian soldiers or launching missiles at Ukraine. At the same time, in October, Minsk accused Kyiv of a planned attack and announced the deployment of a joint Belarusian-Russian combat group on its western borders.
At the beginning of October, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyi signed a decree ruling out the possibility of any negotiations with Putin. “We are ready for dialogue with Russia, but with another Russian president,” he said.
CNN reminds that the leading US officials have been urging Ukraine in recent weeks to signal that it is still open to talks with Russia. However, sources familiar with the situation claim that the US will not push Ukraine to the negotiating table, especially because Russia itself has so far clearly shown no willingness to negotiate.