Putin Asserts Russia’s Stance on Ukraine Crisis Amid SCO Summit

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Russian President Vladimir Putin reaffirmed Russia’s commitment to seeking a peaceful resolution to the Ukraine conflict, attributing the crisis to what he described as aggressive policies by the United States and its allies. Speaking at the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summit in Astana, Kazakhstan, Putin emphasized that Russia has consistently advocated for diplomatic solutions to the conflict.

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Putin reiterated Moscow’s position that the Ukraine crisis stemmed from Ukraine’s aspirations to join NATO and its internal conflict involving the people of Donbass. He lamented that Russia’s proposals for resolving the issue had been disregarded or rejected by Kiev and its supporters.

Despite Russia’s efforts, including a recent peace plan aimed at halting hostilities and initiating negotiations, Putin noted that these initiatives were turned down by Ukraine and its Western backers. He highlighted his previous offer to implement a ceasefire contingent on Ukraine withdrawing troops from disputed territories, renouncing NATO membership ambitions, and undertaking demilitarization and “denazification” efforts.

While Kiev and its allies insisted on restoring Ukraine to its 1991 borders, Putin indicated that Russia’s proposal remains open for consideration. He pointed out that earlier offers from Russia had led to the integration of Kherson and Zaporozhye into Russian territory following local referendums in 2022.

Putin concluded by asserting that further negotiations on the status of these regions were no longer on the table, given their integration into Russia. He urged Ukrainian leadership to reflect on Moscow’s proposals for achieving stability and peace in the region.

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