Ukraine: diplomacy at a standstill, the Kremlin deplores “totally divergent positions”

Westerners and Russians remain on ‘totally divergent positions’, Kremlin says after week of talks

Russians and Westerners remain on “totally divergent” positions despite a week of intense diplomacy, which is “disturbing”, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said in an interview broadcast Sunday by the American channel CNN.

“We don’t know what the outcome will be, we’ve had these three sessions of talks, there are certain points of agreement between us. But in general, on questions of principle, we can now say that we remain on divergent positions, on totally divergent positions. And that’s not good, that’s disturbing,” he said.

Europeans and Americans accuse the Russians of having deployed nearly 100,000 soldiers on the Ukrainian border for a potential invasion of the neighboring country. US intelligence even claims that Moscow has already deployed agents in eastern Ukraine to carry out “sabotage” operations aimed at creating a “pretext” for an offensive.

The Kremlin has rejected these accusations and claims to want to defend itself from the posture deemed threatening by NATO at its gates. Russia is demanding in particular a guarantee that the Atlantic Alliance will not accept Ukraine’s membership, a concession in principle that the West refuses.

“Nobody is threatening anyone with military action”, “it would be madness”, assured Dmitry Peskov on CNN, when asked about a possible Russian offensive in the event of a failure of diplomacy. “But we will be ready to carry out reprisals” if NATO does not meet Russian demands, he warned, without further details on the nature of this response.

“We are not talking about tomorrow, it is not a question of hours”, but “we do not want to see negotiations of a month, a year, just to discuss our disagreements”, further warned Russian President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman. “We want to feel the beginning of a willingness to take our concerns into account. At this stage, we have unfortunately failed to achieve this result. »

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