A top Ukrainian official stated Monday that the government is planning a peace conference by the February end, preferably at the United Nations, with Secretary-General Antonio Guterres acting as a mediator. It would take place around the anniversary of the war with Russia. However, Russia’s Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba recently indicated that such a summit would only be possible if the country had been tried for war crimes.
Also, Kuleba expressed his satisfaction with President Zelensky’s visit to the United States last week and indicated that the U.S. government had developed a special plan to deploy the Patriot missile battery within less than six months after it arrived in the country. Usually, the training process takes a year to complete. During an interview at the Foreign Ministry, the Ukrainian foreign minister stated that Ukraine would do everything in its power to win the war in 2023.
The ministry added that diplomacy plays a significant role in achieving this goal. The end of every war occurs diplomatically, it said. Further, it explained that the result of actions taken on the battleground and at the talks table determines how the war ends. Kuleba stated that the Ukrainian government hoped to organize a peace summit by the February end. Considering that this is not about granting favors to a specific country, the United Nations could provide the best venue for this summit,” he said. Bringing everyone on board is the key to success.
Ukrainian Peace Formula
A statement by Zelensky on December 12 indicated that Ukraine was planning to meet in 2023 to implement the Ukrainian peace formula. Zelensky presented a 10-point peace formula to the G-20 summit in Bali in November that included restoring Ukraine’s territorial integrity, withdrawing Russian troops, releasing all prisoners, setting up a tribunal to investigate the aggression, and ensuring Ukraine’s security.
A question was raised regarding the possibility of inviting Russia to the summit; however, he stated that Russia must first be prosecuted for war crimes at an international tribunal before extending the invitation. Kuleba indicated that this is the only means of inviting them to this step. Guterres and Kuleba have demonstrated impressive results as mediators and negotiators, but most importantly, as men of principle and integrity. Therefore, we look forward to his active participation.
$1.8 Billion Military Aid Package for Ukraine
Foreign Minister underplayed comments by Russian officials indicating they are willing to engage in dialogue. “Frequently, they claim to be open to negotiation, but everything they have done on the battlefield proves that this is not true,” he added. A Russian state television report Sunday quoted Putin as saying that his country was ready for peace talks to end the prolonged war in Ukraine. However, he stated the Ukrainians resist such talks.
Putin’s comments have not changed the situation, as Moscow has continued to attack Ukraine, indicating that a peaceful resolution is not likely. However, he made his first foreign trip since the war began on February 24 when he traveled to the United States. The visit’s significance was underlined by Kuleba, who praised Washington’s efforts. “I believe we see the United States as a very important partner for Ukraine, as well as the United States seeing Ukraine as a very important partner for the United States,” stated Kuleba, a member of the delegation to the United States.
With the assistance of the U.S., Ukraine received a new military aid package worth $1.8 billion, which included a Patriot missile battery. Kuleba believes this move “opens up the possibility for other nations to do the same.” He explained that the U.S. government developed a training program for the missile batteries, enabling them to complete their training faster than usual. Moreover, it would be done “without affecting the quality of the weapon’s use on the battlefield.”
Ukraine Call on U.N. to Deprive Russia of its Status
Kuleba did not specify a specific time frame, only that the training would take place “far from Ukraine.” He also added that it would take place outside of the country. When Russia began its ground and air warfare in Ukraine in 2014, Kuleba was second only to Zelensky in communicating the needs and message of Ukraine to an international audience via Twitter posts or meetings with friendly foreign officials. On Monday, the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry called on U.N. member states to strip Russia of its permanent membership and expel it from the world body.
Throughout the past few years, Kuleba has been preparing for this step to uncover fraud and deprive Russia of its diplomatic status. In its statement, the Foreign Ministry claims that Russia never completed the legal process for gaining membership and took its place after the collapse of the Soviet Union at the U.N. Security Council. “Our battle is still in its early stages, but we will persist, as nothing is impossible,” he told the Associated Press.
Indian Modi Voices Support for Peace Efforts
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi endorsed peace efforts in Ukraine during a telephone conversation with Ukrainian President Zelensky, during which the Ukrainian leader requested Indian assistance in reaching a peaceful solution. Zelensky wrote on Twitter Monday that he spoke with Modi by phone and wished him a successful presidency of the G-20. The peace formula was announced on this platform, and now I am counting on the participation of India in its implementation.
I had a phone call with @PMOIndia Narendra Modi and wished a successful #G20 presidency. It was on this platform that I announced the peace formula and now I count on India’s participation in its implementation. I also thanked for humanitarian aid and support in the UN.
— Володимир Зеленський (@ZelenskyyUa) December 26, 2022
During the year beginning December 1, India will assume the rotating presidency of the Group of 20 major economies. Last month, Zelensky addressed a virtual meeting of the G-20 summit in Indonesia, calling for the adoption of Ukraine’s 10-point peace formula, which calls for the withdrawal of Russian forces from Ukraine and the restoration of the country’s territorial integrity. In his remarks, he said, “the time has come for the war to end.”