Zelensky suggests Putin to hold meeting in Minsk

Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky Ukrainian Presidential Press Office via AP

"And now I wish to turn to Russian President Vladimir Putin. We are suggesting talks", Zelenskiy said.

The annexation led Western powers, including the United States to impose sanctions on Moscow.

Zelensky said on his inauguration in May that ending the war in the east and returning the annexed territory to Ukraine were his priority.

Zelenskiy has been attempting to put his own stamp on diplomacy with Russian Federation since defeating incumbent President Petro Poroshenko in an electoral landslide in April.

Shortly thereafter, Moscow began supporting separatists in eastern Ukraine, a region known as the Donbas, in a conflict in which some 13,000 people have been killed since April 2014.

Speaking about the proposed participants of the meeting, the press service recalled that Lukashenko had earlier noted the need to settle the Ukrainian issue in a three-party framework, namely Belarus, Russia and Ukraine.

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In a July 8 video post, Zelenskiy said he was ready to hold talks with Putin in the Belarusian capital, Minsk.

Russian Federation was hesitant in its response to Zelensky's proposal for the renewed peace talks, with Putin's spokesman declining to respond to the plan.

Zelensky also suggested that the talks should be mediated by U.S. President Donald Trump, UK Prime Minister Theresa May, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron. May is to step down later this month. "We are neither changing anything nor rejecting any diplomatic formats".

"This is a new initiative, and certainly, it will be considered, but now I can not give any response", he said, although he went on to criticize the notion of including President Trump as a mediator because the United States is not a party to the Minsk Accords. "Of course, it will be considered, but so far I can not give any reaction".

"It is clear that the Minsk agreements need more than ever before to be implemented by all sides", Tusk said referring to the peace accords inked in 2014 and 2015 that could have ended the bloodshed but have never been implemented in full.

In Monday's assertion, Zelenskiy additionally criticized a proposal, now deserted, from Ukrainian politician Viktor Medvedchuk, who is thought for his pro-Russian views, for a joint on-line convention with Russian state TV to assist end the battle in eastern Ukraine.

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