By Alexander Miller, for Eurasia Business News – February 25, 2022

Vladimir Putin is ready to send a delegation to Minsk for talks with Ukraine, said Dmitry Peskov, press secretary of the Russian President. The Ukrainian leader Volodymyr Zelensky announced his readiness to discuss the country’s neutral status.

Initially, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that the purpose of the operation was to help the separatist republics of LNR and DNR, including through the demilitarization and denazification of Ukraine. And this, in fact, is an integral component of the neutral status,” said the Kremlin spokesman to journalists.

According to Dmitry Peskov, Russia can be represented at such negotiations at the level of the ministries of defense and foreign affairs, as well as the presidential administration.

Vladimir Putin spoke by phone today with President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko, who, in turn, assured that he would be ready to create all the necessary conditions for the arrival of delegations, ensuring their safety and integrity and holding the said negotiations,” added the spokesman.

Russia launched a military operation early in the morning of February 24, with the official goal to “demilitarize Ukraine”, remove the Ukrainian government and protect the right of Russian leaving in Eastern Ukraine. In a televised address to the Russians, President Vladimir Putin said that circumstances “require decisive and immediate action from us, the people’s republics of Donbass  have asked for help.” 

After the Russian recognition of the separatist republics of Donetsk and Luhansk on February 21 and the entry of Russian troops in the Ukrainian territory in early morning on February 24, the United States and European countries have imposed massive sanctions against Russian state-owned banks, banned technology exports to Russia, denied access to Russia to the US financial market and imposed individual sanctions on Russian officials and their relatives. The European Union has even taken sanctions against the Russian President Vladimir Putin and the Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sergey Lavrov.

Update to come.

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