Only Ukraine will decide under what conditions it’s willing to sit down for talks with Russia.
The UK pushed back against a French call for Ukraine to restart peace negotiations with Russia, warning that Putin may simply be seeking a pause in hostilities after suffering a series of military setbacks. “It’s always been clear that Russia would only meaningfully enter into negotiations when it felt pressured to do so,” said UK Foreign Secretary James Cleverly. “Russia is now on the back foot, but we must continue to support the Ukrainians as they continue to defend themselves.” Speaking on the sidelines of the IISS security conference in Bahrain, Cleverly said all wars “ultimately end in negotiations” but insisted that it’s up to Ukraine to decide under what conditions it’s willing to sit down for talks and what any settlement may look like. A few days earlier, French President Emmanuel Macron said that he hoped Volodymyr Zelenskyy would agree to resume peace talks that have been suspended since April.