Topline

As Ukraine negotiates to end Russia’s invasion, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said Sunday he’s willing to discuss remaining a neutral country if Ukraine is given security guarantees from other states, in an interview between Zelensky and Russian reporters that the Russian government attempted to stop news outlets from releasing.

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Zelensky said Ukraine is ready to consider “security guarantees and neutrality, non-nuclear status of our state,” according to to Reuters’ translation of the interview, which was conducted in Zelensky native language of Russian.

Any proposals on neutrality would need to be put to a vote and agreed upon by the Ukrainian people, Zelensky added.

Zelensky said he will not discuss Russian President Vladimir Putin’s demand that Ukraine demilitarize, which was one of Russia’s justifications for launching an invasion over a month ago.

Despite recent reports that Ukraine has gone on the offensive against struggling Russian forces in some areas, Zelensky said Ukraine doesn’t plan on attempting to recapture all Russian-occupied land using military force and hopes to reach a “compromise” on the status of two pro-Russian breakaway states in eastern Ukraine, according to Reuters.

Zelensky pointed to what he deemed a “humanitarian catastrophe” in the besieged city of Mariupol, telling reporters it was “impossible” to get food, water and medicine to civilians as Russian forces have blocked all entries and exits to the city.