“Ready for negotiations” with Putin

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said on Sunday that he is ready for negotiations with Russian President Vladimir Putin, but repeated a warning that failure could mean “a third world war.”

Driving the news: Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine has stretched on for more than three weeks, with experts now saying the war has reached a stalemate that could prove even more devastating.

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What they’re saying: “I am ready for negotiations with him. I was ready over the last two years and I think that…without negotiations we cannot end this war,” Zelensky told CNN’s “Fareed Zakaria GPS.”

  • “If there is just 1% chance for us to stop this war, I think that we need to take this chance,” he added.

  • “We are losing people on a daily basis, innocent people on the ground. Russian forces have come to exterminate us, to kill us.”

  • “There are compromises for which we cannot be ready as an independent state,” Zelensky said, adding that these include “any compromises related to our territorial integrity and our sovereignty.”

The bottom line: “We have to use any format, any chance in order to have a possibility of negotiating, possibility of talking to Putin. But if these attempts fail, that would mean that this is a third World War.”

  • This is not the first time the Ukrainian president has mentioned the Russian invasion’s global implications. World War III “may have already started” is what Zelensky said last week in an interview with NBC News.

  • “Nobody knows whether it may have already started. And what is the possibility of this war if Ukraine will fall, in case Ukraine will? It’s very hard to say,” Zelensky said at the time.

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