Peskov on Russian-Ukrainian talks: ‘We cannot yet talk about progress and we will not’

“The fact it was decided to continue the offline talks is of course important”

The Russian president’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov has answered other hot-button questions that concern everybody now: how the special military operation in Ukraine is going and what to expect from the talks between Moscow and Kyiv. Read in Realnoe Vremya’s report what the Kremlin says.

“We cannot yet talk about progress and we will not”

Peskov as usual evasively answers the questions about Russian-Ukrainian talks. He doesn’t make any forecasts — the Kremlin still sticks with “a narrative of not disclosing any details” fearing that it can harm the negotiating process. At the same time, he has noted that the sides aren’t discussing a prisoner swap.

“We cannot yet talk about progress and we will not. The fact it was decided to continue the offline talks is of course important,” Peskov has briefly answered journalists’ questions.

As for the meeting of Presidents of Russia and Ukraine Vladimir Putin and Volodymyr Zelensky, there is still no progress in this regard.

The talks between Russia and Ukraine will be offline again this week after three-week breaks for online communication. A neutral site — Turkey — was chosen for the talks that repeatedly offered to become an intermediary.

“It is necessary to go by our militaries’ statements”

Peskov is laconic when answering questions about the course of the special military operation in Ukraine. He redirects them to the Russian Ministry of Defence that is reporting on the situation several times a day.

“We are daily hearing the statements of our defence ministry representatives. So it is necessary to go by our militaries’ statements,” the Kremlin representative indicated to the journalists.

As for the discussion of the details of the special military operation in TV shows, the Kremlin is fine with it. Everything that is said there is considered as personal opinions that don’t influence the course of the special operation, writes TASS.

Biden’s statements raise concerns in the Kremlin

The Kremlin is cautious about US President Joe Biden’s sharp and offensive statements addressed to Russian President Vladimir Putin. Peskov has noted that these words “are concerning, of course.”

“We will continue following the US president’s statements very carefully, we are scrupulously documenting them and we will keep doing this,” has claimed the president’s spokesman.

Meanwhile, the US goes on justifying itself after Biden’s words about Putin. Washington is diligently trying to prove the American leader’s speech didn’t contain any extremist elements — he didn’t call on changing Russia’s administration, American functionaries claim.

It should be reminded that Biden distinguished himself after he claimed when delivering a speech in Poland that Ukraine would never become a victory for Russia and Vladimir Putin couldn’t stay in power. He even had the time to call his colleague a “butcher” whereas earlier he didn’t hesitate to say that the Russian president was a “war criminal.” The Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs then warned that such statements put Russian-American relations closer to a breaking point.

“It is a sovereign state, and it is necessary to ask it for an explanation”

Peskov hasn’t commented on the high-profile statements of the head of the Luhansk People’s Republic Russia recognised on 21 February Leonid Pasechnik about the plans for holding a referendum to make the LPR a part of Russia. Later, he specified that there wasn’t any preparation for the popular voting.

He has forwarded all questions about the statements on the referendum on joining the LPR to Russia to Pasechnik.

“In any case, we are talking about a state whose independence and sovereignty was recognised by the Russian Federation. Therefore it is necessary to ask this sovereign state for an explanation,” has indicated Peskov.

No “law on non-returnees” in sight

The Kremlin has also denied the rumours that the Russian authorities are creating a “law on non-returnees”, people who left Russia after the beginning of the special military operation and the further imposition of a barrage of Western sanctions.

“This is rubbish, fabrication. There is no such thing and there can’t be,” Peskov has assured the journalists.

Tatiana Dyomina