Russia and Ukraine to hold talks as troops edge closer to Kyiv
Russia and Ukraine were set for a third round of talks Monday as Moscow’s invading forces maintain their devastating assaults across the former Soviet state.
The discussions come as Russian troops edge closer to Kyiv and keep up their relentless bombardment of the besieged southern port city of Mariupol, where nearly 2,200 people have been killed in the onslaught, according to local officials.
Ukrainian and Russian representatives will meet via videoconference Monday, a Ukrainian presidential adviser and a Kremlin spokesman both said. According to Ukrainian negotiator David Arakhamia, the talks will begin at 0820 GMT.
“And our goal is that in this struggle, in this difficult negotiating work, Ukraine will get the necessary result… for peace and for security,” President Volodymyr Zelensky said early Monday, adding that both sides speak every day.
He said the aim was “to do everything to ensure a meeting of presidents. A meeting that I am sure people are waiting for.” “We see significant progress,” Leonid Slutsky, a senior member of Russia’s
negotiating team, told state-run television network RT Sunday.
Talks between Kyiv and Moscow have yet to yield a ceasefire and Russian forces have shown no sign of easing their onslaught.
In an attack dangerously close to NATO member Poland, Russian air strikes Sunday on a Ukrainian military training ground near the border killed at least 35 people and wounded more than 130.
Zelensky on Monday renewed his call for NATO to impose a no-fly zone following the attack near the western city of Lviv.
“If you do not close our sky, it is only a matter of time before Russian missiles fall on your territory, on NATO territory, on the homes of NATO citizens,” Zelensky said in a video address.