Russia accused Western countries of preventing peace negotiations with Ukraine and thus prolonging the war.
“Now is the moment Western countries are betting on to continue the war,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told Russian state television.
“Under the leadership of the US, the West does not allow Ukrainians to think, talk about, or discuss peace,” Peskov said, referring to statements by Western politicians who said they did not want to pressure Kyiv to enter into negotiations.
Despite this “the moment for negotiations is coming,” he added.
The Kremlin spokesperson noted that Ukraine must, however, for the sake of peace, accept Moscow’s demands, which include recognition of Crimea in the Black Sea as Russian territory and the renunciation of the Donbas and Luhansk region.
Russia and Ukraine had held a series of talks in Belarus and Turkey, but they did not result in any progress, as Moscow adhered to its claims to Crimea and Donbas, while Kyiv refused to give up any part of its territory.