Top Ukraine updates: Volodymyr Zelenskiy calls for direct talks with Russian president
March 3, 2022 0 Comments
Here are the top developments of the day on the Russia-Ukraine crisis:
- Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy on Thursday called for direct talks with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin and military aid from the Western nations, reported The Guardian. Referring to Putin’s long table at which he meets various leaders, Zelenskiy said, “Sit down with me. Just not 30 metres away like with [French President Emmanuel Macron].” Putin had met Macron earlier in the day. Zelenskiy underlined that Ukraine had no plans to attack Russia. “What do you want from us?” he asked. “Leave our land.” Zelenskiy also warned that if Ukraine could not be defended, the former Soviet nations of Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia “will be next”.
- Putin told Macron that Russia would achieve its goals in Ukraine, Reuters reported. After the two leaders spoke, the Kremlin said that Russia’s goals for the “demilitarisation” and “neutrality” of Ukraine were made clear. The Kremlin also said that operation in Ukraine was proceeding “according to plan”. The French president, after the meeting, said he feared the “worst is to come”, reported AFP, citing a senior aide.
- At the 49th Human Rights Council Session in Geneva, India on Thursday voiced concern over the escalating humanitarian crisis in Ukraine and called for an immediate end to hostilities, PTI reported. India’s remarks come a day after the country abstained from voting against Russian aggression at the United Nations General Assembly, which later adopted the resolution passed by 141 member-nations. At Geneva, India advocated dialogue and diplomacy as the “only solution” to resolve disputes.
- After the second round of talks, Ukraine and Russia reached an understanding on a humanitarian corridor to safely evacuate Ukrainians in besieged towns and cities, The Guardian reported. Both sides have agreed to hold a third round of talks as well. Before the talks on Thursday, Ukraine said it would demand an immediate ceasefire and humanitarian corridors to safely evacuate citizens from towns and cities under attack, reported Reuters.
- Thirty-three people were killed in Russian air strikes in the northern Ukrainian city of Chernihiv, close to the border with Belarus, reported AFP. The Russian forces attacked two schools as well as homes, the city’s deputy mayor Regina Gusak said.